Westminster grabs county title

Owls edge South Carroll by 0.5

Cavaliers produce five individual champs

Wrestling

February 20, 2000|By Edward Lee | Edward Lee,SUN STAFF

In the end, South Carroll had the stars, but Westminster had the depth.

Despite the seventh-ranked Cavaliers' five individual champions, the Owls received titles from senior 145-pounder Kevin Henry and junior 152-pounder Jon Burger to edge South Carroll by the slightest of margins -- 164.5-164.0 -- at the Carroll County wrestling championships at Francis Scott Key yesterday.

After Ryan Dell of North Carroll nipped Westminster's Randy Green, 3-1 in overtime in their 189-pound bout, the Cavaliers needed a win from sophomore heavyweight Jake Creech to gain its second straight tournament crown.

But Francis Scott Key senior Greg Frech decked Creech at the 2: 24 mark to earn his second straight county championship, and the Owls emerged with their fourth tournament title in five years.

What made the outcome even more remarkable was that South Carroll had soundly beaten Westminster, 43-19, in a dual meet on Feb. 4 and dashed any hopes of the Owls competing in the dual-meet regionals.

Westminster coach Henry Mohlhenrich said his team used the time to prepare for yesterday's tournament.

"We had two weeks with nothing to do," said Mohlhenrich. "We had two weeks of solid and intense practices. The guys were in great shape. They kept on coming and they never gave up."

The Owls got third-place finishes from Dan Warner (112), Jason Brown (130), Mark Lanham (171), and Pat Zimmerman (heavyweight).

Henry defeated Liberty senior Chris Risko for the third time this season with a 15-0 technical fall. Burger slipped past Mohlhenrich's nephew, Cavaliers junior Travis Mohlhenrich, 4-1.

Burger's victory put Westminster up for good -- a result that Burger said he was well aware of before he even wrestled Travis Mohlhenrich.

"Coach Mohlhenrich told me that a win from me sealed the title," Burger said. "After South Carroll beat us in that dual meet, that was our goal. It definitely made my night."

Despite the disappointing loss, the Cavaliers had five county champs for the first time in school history.

Junior Kellen Weber outpointed Owls junior Ryan Miller, 14-7, at 125, and junior Dan Patterson earned his second straight county title by pinning Liberty's Justin Muhl at the 2: 56 mark of their 130-pound bout.

Juniors Josh Wampler (135) and Bryan Hamper (140) decked the Westminster duo of junior Scott Wittbecker and senior Gabe Wilson, respectively, to secure their first county championships.

And senior Chris Currence became a two-time county titlist by tilting Francis Scott Key's Dan Holler at the 3: 22 mark of their 171-pound match.

Besides Dell, North Carroll had another county champion in sophomore 103-pounder Tyler Graham, who beat the Owls' J. R. Landsman, 15-0.

Liberty also had two county titlists. Senior Rich Skelly won his second straight crown at 160 with a 4-1 decision over Westminster sophomore Nick Burger; 112-pounder Paul Hartman defeated South Carroll's Ron Lewis, 4-2.

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