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Lions go for upset - again

February 11, 2002

Lions go for upset - again



By AL DITZEL
alfredd@herald-mail.com


1A/2A State Duals

Semifinals at Noon, Lansdowne H.S.

Kent County

(Lineup from East Final) 103: Nick Redman; 112: Artie Kaehler; 119: Jeremy Yerkie; 125: Brian Fox; 130: Bobby Bramble; 135: forfeit; 140: Ronnie Bramble; 145: Russell Conrad; 152: Trey Kohl; 160: Ben Shaw; 171: Allen Conrad; 189: Joey Kirwan; 275: Willie Leonard.

Walkersvile (13-2-1)

103: Josh Work (9-8); 112: Jake Evey (10-17); 119: Chad Cotterman (26-5); 125: Dan Caywood (29-0); 130: Ed Asbil (26-8); 135: Danny Crum (23-10); 140: Michael Smith (8-8); 145: Tim Mulford (19-7); 152: Zach McLain (16-13); 160: Ryan King (12-11); 171: Jimmy Francis (18-7); 189: Billy Burke (19-11); 275: Jason Stambaugh (24-8).



Could you imagine what would have happened this Sunday if the New England Patriots needed to play another Super Bowl?

That's the situation for the Walkersville wrestling team today as it takes the mat for the Class 1A/2A Duals semifinals at Lansdowne High School.

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"The kids are rocking," Walkersville coach Bryan Biehl said Thursday. "We're all hyped up. This is like the Super Bowl again."

His Lions, who won their first "Super Bowl" Wednesday by defeating top-seeded Beall and Williamsport to win the West regional, do not have a Pro Bowl-type game at noon. Instead, Walkersville faces an uphill climb in its first state appearance when the Lions take on defending 1A/2A state champion Kent County.

Hammond and Owings Mills will meet in the other semifinal, also at noon. The two winners will meet at 6 p.m.

Kent County, which has won five straight 1A/2A East regional titles, is also the defending state 1A/2A individual tournament champs.

Biehl doesn't seem too worried about that.

"Hey, at this level, it's all about who wants it more," he said. "It's all mental and conditioning."

Of course, some good matchups would help Walkersville's cause. The Lions (13-2-1) do not move wrestlers around. That may change today because Kent County forfeited the 135-pound class in its East Region tournament.

"We're probably going to weigh in two people at every weight for this one," Biehl said. "We'll be ready. The kids are focused. They know what they need to do."

Biehl, like every other big match, said he will stress pins.

"We have to pin and not get pinned," he said. "Our aces have to cash in."

Biehl's "aces" include Dan Caywood (29-0), who finished second in the state individual tournament at 112, Chad Cotterman (26-5), Ed Asbil (26-8), Danny Crum (23-10), Tim Mulford (19-7), Jimmy Francis (18-7), Billy Burke (19-11) and Jason Stambaugh (24-8).

But Kent County's lineup is full of state placers, too, including Brian Fox (125), the state champ at 119 last year, Willie Leonard (275), Joey Kirwan (189) and Artie Kaehler (112), all state third-plane winners last year, and Bobby Bramble (130) and Trey Kohl (152), who qualified for the state individual tournament last year.

That's right - if all goes as expected, Kent County's state champion, Fox, will meet Walkersville's state runner-up, Caywood, at 125.

"I believe that wrestling, like other sports, is motivational," Biehl said. "Early wins get the momentum going. That's important to us, big time. The guys get fired up anyway.

"They're just going to keep on rocking," Biehl said of his Lions. "They're a team."

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