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Hewitt's mental game must be on - state wrestling preview

February 26, 2002|By AL DITZEL

Watching Williamsport matches this year, it's easy to notice how coach Chuck Martin will move his wrestlers around.

He asks a lot of his wrestlers and most all of them respond positively.

A prime example is Devin Hewitt. He is a sophomore and is making his first state appearance this weekend at Western Maryland College.

"Devin has wrestled a long time and has a lot of skill," Martin said of Hewitt. "He can go toe to toe with the best wrestlers out there when he is mentally prepared."

A pime example was this past weekend in the Maryland Class 1A/2A West Region. Hewitt faced former state champion, Northern Garrett's Petey Stein in the semifinals, and fell 2-0. He allowed only a reversal. Later, Stein would dominate Walkersville's Dan Caywood, 3-0. Hewitt hung with Caywood, a state runnerup last season, in the Hub Cup finals losing an 5-2 decision.

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"He is also one of the hardest workers in the room and always has a good attitude," Martin said.

Attitude is important to Martin. He has bumped Hewitt from his normal 125-pound class to 130 several times this season. Hewitt (26-5) has responded well.

"He has his goals set high and has done what it takes to reach them," Martin said. "The milliondollar question for him is ... will he have it mentally? If he does, like I think he will, I look for him to do well this coming weekend."

Along with teammates seniors Travis Brown and Matt Allen, juniors Brian Forsythe, Cory Kuczynski and Corey Leggett, fellow sophomore Ryan Bowers and freshman Mike McGill, Williamsport could make a major splash this weekend in the team standings.

Here's a brief look at the area wrestlers in the Maryland Class 1A/2A tournament. Five weight classes will be featured today, beginning with 103 pounds, and Wednesday and three weight classes, as well as 3A/4A 275, will be featured Thursday.

103

Area participants: Mike McGill (Williamsport), Dan Drury (South Hagerstown).

McGill (31-2), a freshman, has won the Hub Cup, Washington County and 1A/2A West Region tournaments. Will meet Hereford's D.J. Scarponi (22-12), a freshman who finished fourth in the North Region.

Drury (2-12), a freshman, finished fourth in West, will meet North champ Eastern Technical freshman Chris Clark (25-3).

Weight class: Altholton senior Doug Ramsey (28-1) finished fourth last year and sixth in 2000. Parkside's unbeaten senior Dustin Elliott was 0-2 in '01.

112

Area participants: Mike Wagner (North Hagerstown), Brian Forsythe (Williamsport).

Wagner (28-4), a junior, has won WCT and West, defeating Forsythe in each final. This is his first appearance in the state tournament. He will meet East fourth-place winner, sophomore Joe Scarlavai (10-4).

Forsythe (27-5), a junior, has won Hub Cup will meet East third-place winner, junior Zach Dawson (28-6). Forsythe has career 0-1 record in states.

Weight class: Eastern Tech senior Trent Dixon (27-2) won 103 in 3A/4A in '01 and could meet Wagner in the quarterfinals. Kent County's Artie Kaehler (33-1), a two-time state placer, is also on Wagner's side of the bracket. Lackey's Joe McKeever (27-6), sixth at 103 in '01, is on the other side.

119

Area participants: Chris Joliet (North), Chad Cotterman (Walkersville), Stephen Copeland (South Hagerstown), Cory Kuczynski (Williamsport).

Joliet (29-2), a senior, has won Francis Scott Key, Hub Cup, WCT and West Region tourneys. Has career 0-0 record in states. Will meet South fourth-place winner, Centennial sophomore Dominic Ventura (26-11).

Cotterman (30-5), a freshman, won the Frederick County Tournament and finished runner-up to Joliet in the Hub Cup and West Region. He will meet Poolesville senior Travis Pittenger (29-6), who finished third in South. If Cotterman wins, likely he'll see Kent County's returning state champ at 119, Brian Fox (28-4), who also placed fourth in 2000.

Copeland (24-11), a junior, is making his first state appearance and drew Oakland Mills' sophomore Jeff Plasse (27-5), a state runnerup at 103 in '01.

Kuczynski (26-8), a junior, is making his state debut and is in the same bracket as Joliet. Kuczynski drew Wheaton senior Francis Jeffry-Idun (28-3) in the first round.

Weight class: Fox is the favorite and Rising Sun junior Greg Benham (22-7), Joliet's likely opponent in the quarters, is rated very high.

125

Area participants: Dan Caywood (Walkersville), Devin Hewitt (Williamsport).

Caywood (31-1), a sophomore, was a state finalist last year. He has Damascus Holiday, Hub Cup and FCT titles. He will meet Harford Tehcnical's Brad Dreyer (26-6).

Hewitt (26-5), a sophomore, is making his first state appearance. He will meet Lansdowne's Ryan Brown (29-5).

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