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Walkersville sweeps tri-match

December 22, 2003|by ANDREW MASON

andrewm@herald-mail.com

SMITHSBURG - Walkersville wrestling coach Scott McIntosh said his team, competing for only the second time this season and with eight newcomers to the varsity lineup, was "still just getting the kinks out" Saturday afternoon.

Most teams probably wouldn't mind having the Lions' early-season kinks in March.

Walkersville, The Herald-Mail's top-ranked squad and the defending 2A-1A West tourney champ, beat No. 6 South Hagerstown 62-16 and host Smithsburg 54-15 in a scrambled, two-mat tri-meet. The Leopards topped the Rebels, 48-26.

"The new guys stepped it up today and handled themselves well," McIntosh said. "They know the moves and now they're learning how to put them together."

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Senior Igor Chudinov (4-0) is off to a hot start in his first varsity campaign. The Lions' 189-pounder beat a pair of previously unbeatens in South's Eric McPherson and Smithsburg's Scott White, who began the day a combined 11-0.

Junior Mike Smith (140), sophomore Derek Hubbard (275) and freshman Luke Milyard (112) - none of whom scored varsity points last season - also were double-winners for the Lions (4-0), who have had limited competition due to weather cancellations and postponements.

"We're sick of beating each other up in practice," said Walkersville senior and defending 140 West champ Dan Caywood, who recorded two pins at 145. "We wanted to beat up on some other guys.

"We're younger than last year, but we have a lot of practice-room heroes, guys who were behind the scenes last year who want to show what they have."

All things considered, Smithsburg coach Joe Dietrich was pleased with the Leopards' effort.

"Walkersville's tough," Dietrich said. "We're relatively young and, at this point in the season, getting the split is a pretty good deal."

Saturday's action was divided into three rounds, with the Leopards (1-2) and Rebels (3-3) going head to head in half of the first two.

South's lighter half led Smithsburg's 22-15 after Round One, before the Leopards' upperweights took over in Round Two. Smithsburg's Justin Hovermale (145), Dylan Miss (152) and James Whitt (275) recorded pins to lead the comeback.

"The upperweights knew what they needed to do," Dietrich said. "They knew we needed pins out there so we could pull this thing out, and we got on a roll."

After McPherson topped White 12-4 at 189, Mike Rinebolt picked things right back up for Smithsburg at 215, topping South's previously undefeated Brandon Carbaugh, 7-0.

"I didn't know much about (Carbaugh) other than he was 4-0," said Rinebolt (7-2), who pinned Walkersville's Ryan Joyce in his other match. "I just went after him like he was the best wrestler in the state. That's how you have to approach every match.

"I practice with Scott White every day, and he gets me ready. He pushes me every day. We just all try to make each other better. (Beating South) is a real boost for our team."

Saturday's double-winners also included: Walkersville's Gleason Sweeney (103), Josh Work (119), Chad Cotterman (135), Ben Gould (152) and Jimmy Francis (171); South's Jake Hockensmith (135); and Smithsburg's Wes McKenen (125) and Jeff Sprecher (160).

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