Washington County meet at Boonsboro, Saturday, 1:30 p.m.
With bragging rights at stake, unless senior pride asserts itself, some dark horses may triumph. North should prevail, but Williamsport traditionally fires up for this one, while Smithsburg plays spoiler better than everyone.
At 135, South junior Shane Williams could upset Wildcat senior Chris Allen, but Leopard junior Brian Weiblinger could topple both of them. If North senior Jason Houser is still injured, there's an opportunity for someone at 140. The 152-pound match between Hub state champion Seth Staley and Williamsport's Josh Miller, both juniors, may be equalized by their recent illnesses. Hub senior Thomas Horton can't compete for religious reasons, leaving 160 open to the wrestler who wants it. North junior Jeff Seidman (189) has already beaten Smithsburg senior Steve Myers once. And how will 200-pound North junior E.B. Wallech, who has developed into a real six-minute heavyweight, fare against 230-ish Wildcat sophomore Ryan McDonald?
Barring disaster, you can phone in the rest: Ashby (103), Nichols (112), Kuczynski (119), Stone (125), Boward (130), Dempsher (145), (Jared) Myers (171).
Making the grade
Congratulations to the following wrestlers who were named to the 1998-99 West Virginia Mat Academic All-State Team by maintaining a GPA of 3.7 or better, proving they can succeed at life as well as at sports:
Berkeley Springs: seniors Jason Seville (145) and Tommy Widmyer (160); Hedgesville: sophomore Andrew Everhart (171); freshman Phil Files (189); Jefferson: juniors Jeff Wratchford (160) and Scott Mercer (130); Martinsburg: seniors Josh Staubs (125), David Henry (135) and Scott Gusic (171); junior Brad Davis (140); freshmen Matt Roach (135).
There is a three-way tie for area's quickest pin: along with South's Heth Troncatti, mentioned last week, Williamsport's Brad Barr (189) and T.J.'s Jay LeBlanc (130) also have :11 pins.
Middletown's Zane Harshman received honorable mention as one of Wrestling USA magazine's 1999 Outstanding High School Seniors. Harshman, defending 1A-2A state champion, is 19-0, one of the few undefeated wrestlers in the area.
Martinsburg coach Steve Britner broke the 30-win mark at the Jefferson quad meet last Friday, setting a new school record for team victories. More important, in keeping with Bulldog tradition, he will receive 30 doughnuts. Must be nice not to have to cut weight, coach. Scott Gusic logged his 40th season win, also breaking a school record and also getting his 100th career win.
At the same quad, Jefferson's Jeff Wratchford (17-12) didn't let exercise-induced asthma keep him from decisioning state placer Widmyer, 6-3.
Widmyer proceeded to a tournament in Ohio, where he defeated the defending 152-pound West Virginia state champion, and was named Outstanding Wrestler. (And people think this isn't a mental sport.)
Robert Steele, 24-1 and a junior at Maryland School for the Deaf, claimed the 130-pound championship at the Eastern Schools for the Deaf Athletic Association tournament in New York City, helping MSD earn an unprecedented sixth straight team championship, and breaking the record set in 1976 by Penn School for the Deaf. The ESDAA tournament, originally a five-school event, was made an open this year, drawing teams from Texas, California, Florida and Ohio.
Jeff White, MSD coach for the past seven years, has guided the Orioles to four National Deaf Prep Championships.
Friday, Pa. AAA Sectionals at Mechanicsburg, 6 p.m.; AA Sectionals at Delone Catholic, 6.
Friday, Md. and Pa. Independent Schools State Tournament.