Montgomery judge sets hearing on adding a 215-pound class

Ficker's suit to be argued for 4 days, starting Jan. 10

November 18, 1999|By Lem Satterfield

A Montgomery County Circuit Court judge denied yesterday the Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association's move to block a lawsuit seeking another upper-weight class for public high school wrestling.

Attorney Robin Ficker, who sued in September, said Judge James Chapin also scheduled four days beginning Jan. 10 to hear arguments, after which he will rule on whether a 215-pound weight class should be created. The state's heaviest classifications are 189 pounds and unlimited (a maximum of 275 pounds).

Ficker sued on behalf of himself, his son Flynn, an upper-weight wrester at DeMatha in Hyattsville, and several parents.

Ficker's son, a private-school student, was eliminated from the suit, but the lawyer said the judge "refused to grant the motion to dismiss for the rest of the lawsuit, which affects the public schools.

"How are they [state association] ever going to find medical testimony," Ficker said, "to say that there are no safety factors inherent in this [unlimited] weight class, where you can have a 190-pound, 14-year-old wrestling a 19-year-old, 275-pounder?"

A phone call to MPSSAA lawyer Dana H. Murray for comment was not returned.

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