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Hockensmith keeps his cool to lift Rebels

December 22, 2005|by CHRIS CARTER /Staff Correspondent

While most wrestlers don't sweat until they get inside the circle, it's understandable that when the match is on the line, some might start to perspire before the opening whistle.

Understandable for some. Not for South Hagerstown freshman Jake Hockensmith.

With the Rebels trailing 39-36 Wednesday night, Hockensmith held the match in his hands and made quick work of James Buchanan's James Poole, scoring a pin in just 43 seconds to give South the 42-39 victory.

"I wasn't sweating it. I take it in stride," said Hockensmith. "I knew what I had to do. The plan was to come out and get (Poole) with a bear hug."

Using that approach Hockensmith scored a takedown within 15 seconds and controlled the bout until getting the pin 28 seconds later.

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"That's what we want to do. Go out and get it done. Don't make the match longer than it has to be," said Rebels coach Ralph Stottlemyer. "You can't let anyone hang around because if you get tired they're going to make you pay."

Stottlemyer was witness to that in the 135-pound bout between his Dustin Hines and JB's Warren Keener. Hines got out to a quick 4-0 lead in the first period, but allowed Keener to gradually pick away at the lead. A takedown by Keener in the third period gave him a 7-6 lead, which he held onto for the decision to cut the South lead to 36-27. The Rebels (3-7) had led by 18.

It was an otherwise short night for both teams. Only two bouts went beyond the first period and only one weight class went to a decision. Eleven bouts ended in pins inside the first period.

JB's Derek Straley opened the match with a pin of Ben Benner at 160. The teams exchanged the next three falls for a 12-12 tie. The pin of Gavin Armstrong by South's Jeremy Gross in the fourth bout at 215 proved to be costly, Rockets coach Bill Mitchell said.

"I figured we would be able to win at 215," said Mitchell. "It was an upset. That's a match that we should win."

A 16-second pin by Keith King (275) and a 50-second pin by Derick Boerstler (112) sandwiched a forfeit victory by Dane Devin (103) to give South a 30-12 lead.

"I would have liked to have had an opponent for (Dane) at 103 because he's a good wrestler," said Stottlemyer.

"It hurts to give up a forfeit every time out," Mitchell said. "Sometimes it can be big and it was tonight."

The Rockets (1-7) scored three pins and a decision in the next five bouts to finally take the lead at 39-36 and a chance for back-to-back wins after an 0-6 start, but Hockensmith doomed those hopes with his match-ending pin.

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