Old Mill shakes off Chesapeake for Arundel title

Arundel's Woody is first female to make regionals

Hammond takes Howard


High Schools

February 20, 2005

There was some of the same and also something new at yesterday's Anne Arundel County wrestling tournament at Annapolis High.

With titles coming from Greg Saumenig (103), Chris Volker (152) and Adam Chisholm (171) combined with a typical solid team performance, defending champ Old Mill captured its 14th county crown by a 209.5 to 191 margin over runner-up Chesapeake.

As for firsts, Arundel freshman Nicole Woody finished third in the 103-pound weight class to automatically qualify for next weekend's Class 4A-3A East region tournament, becoming the first female wrestler in Maryland to ever qualify for the regional tournament.

Chisholm's 6-5 decision over Chesapeake's Jake Couch, a defending county champ, best depicts the Patriots' continued excellence.

"The tradition at Old Mill is one of the biggest things. It keeps everyone going year after year," said Chisholm, a senior captain who rebounded from two regular-season losses to Couch. "We preach it to the new kids and they buy into it and that's why we're so successful."

Woody, who replaced starter John Kotsis, opened with a major decision over Broadneck's Josh Tabor, dropped a 6-3 decision to Chesapeake's eventual runner-up Vincent Scardina before coming back to get a decision over South River's Matt Tomitz and an 8-0 major decision over John Graham from Annapolis in the consolation final.

"It's great [to qualify]," said Woody, who is now 6-1 on the season. "Next weekend at regions is going to be a lot tougher, so I'm going to have to keep my head into it. I really want to make it to states."

- Glenn P. Graham

Howard County

Stephen Sessa had a bad shoulder and a nasty cut on his right eyebrow, but the Hammond junior refused to quit during the 189-pound final of the Howard County championships at Reservoir.

"Never," Sessa said. "I've been taught never to quit ... I just kept going."

With a bandage wrapped around his forehead and blood streaming down his cheek, Sessa held off River Hill's Ryan Deiter, 9-5, to become the fifth Hammond wrestler to win an individual county title.

Sessa's victory, along with triumphs by Ethan Cohen (119), Vince Taweel (130), Joe Maldonado (135) and A.J. Smith (152), helped Hammond gain 214 points to capture its first team county championship since 1999. River Hill, which had won the previous five county titles, placed second with 199.5 points.

"It's incredible," Sessa said. The county title "has been with [River Hill] for so long, we just had to get it back."

Hammond continued its drastic turnaround this season. Last year, the Bears placed fourth in the county and went 9-9 in dual meets. This year, they went 10-0 in county dual meets and placed eight wrestlers in the county championship finals.

Hammond coach Pedro Barbosa, in his fifth season, credited the Bears' success in part to the maturation of wrestlers like Smith, Cohen (the tournament's Outstanding Wrestler) and Sessa.

"Everybody's banged up at this point," Barbosa said. "The big point is getting through it."

- Ryan Basen

Baltimore County

Won Jin Cha (112), Eric Vinores (140), Mike Kessler (152) and Ben McCree (160) won titles as Owings Mills (206.5 points) won its fourth straight Baltimore County title and its ninth overall.

Kessler (27-0) dethroned Kenwood's state champ Mason Krumholtz (30-1), 7-2, ending a 65-match winning streak that included two wins over Kessler.

"He got eight takedowns combined on me in the two times we've wrestled; tonight, he got none," said Kessler, a state runner-up who won a rematch of last year's county final. "All summer, everyone I wrestled I imagined was him. I wanted him more than I've wanted anyone in my career."

For runner-up Hereford (169 points), senior D.J. Scarponi (119) pinned Owings Mills' Tony Mack in 2:28 for his first title. For Dulaney, state champ James Knox (125) won his third county title; Scott Carroll (103), his second; and Matt Jacobs (130), his first.

Kenwood crowned No. 4 Eric Robinson (135, 31-0), who overcame deficits to win his semifinal, 15-10, over Hereford's No. 6 Josh Asper, and his title bout, 3-2, over Owings Mills' No. 2 Ryan Nash. Lansdowne's Josh Nutty (275) scored a 49-second fall.

Catonsville's No. 1 Alex Broadwater (145) downed Lansdowne's Jerry Lipscomb, 7-2; Parkville's Razzaq Muhammad (171) avenged an earlier loss, 11-4, against Pikesville's Asa Kurland; and Milford Mill's Tim Parks (215) upset Sparrows Point's No. 5 Evan Pritchett, 9-7, in overtime as all three became their school's first champions since 2000.

- Lem Satterfield

Baltimore City

Douglass crowned Jerrelle Armstrong (125), Troy McNeil (145) and Parrish Hargrove (171), compared to City's Robert Douglass (130) and Don Scales (140). The teams were tied with 167 points, but City won for having the most wins in the tournament.

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