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Hockensmith wins by a nose

January 14, 2006|By BOB PARASILITI

bobp@herald-mail.com

At times, the action at the Hub Cup Invitational wrestling tournament made the filming of "The Fast and The Furious" look like a kiddy car ride.

That combination of competitive intensity and athletic agility in Friday's first night of action was anything but a drag.

Need examples? Well, Helen Marcoulis of Magruder proved to be fast while Greencastle's Conrad Myers was furious. And South Hagerstown's Jake Hockensmith, he was fast, then furious, then furiously fast and fastly furious all in two bouts.

Hockensmith, the second seed in the 145-pound division, seemed to have it in cruise control after his 22-second pin of Linganore's Kyler Leither in the first round.

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But the senior found out he was far from a free ride to tonight's finals in the championship quarterfinals.

Hockensmith was in early control of Westminster's Russel Powers with a 3-0 lead in the second period until an accidental clash of heads with 1:28 remaining in the period changed the complexion of the match - and Hockensmith - dramatically.

"Basically, he was ahead 8-0 but wasn't able to breathe," South coach Ralph Stottlemyer said. "His nose was broken and we weren't able to stop the bleeding. He was ahead and almost lost by default."

Blood flowed from Hockensmith's nose on contact. He left a trail while getting back to his corner for treatment as the blood dripped from his hands and down his arms.

Injury time - a five-minute allotment - ticked away as South's coaching staff worked to get Hockensmith back into the match. The bout was stopped two more times to control the bleeding, changing the style the South wrestler used each time to get the win and advance to today's semifinals.

"I told him to go out there and get a pin. ... Don't be fooling around," Stottlemyer said. "He had him on his back twice."

Hockensmith came out of the first injury stoppage and tried to take down Powers immediately. He got the near pin and moved to an 8-0 lead after two periods.

Hockensmith took to the third period, trying to wrestle while Powers applied holds around the bloodied nose, looking for a default victory. The bout was stopped again at 1:06 remaining, turning Hockensmith defensive.

The third stoppage came with :51 remaining. With the injury time down to 48 seconds, South assistant coach Larry Moore took athletic tape and applied it over Hockensmith's nose to get him through the bout.

Hockensmith immediately tried to put Powers on his back, just to save contact on his sore nose. He rode Powers down in the final 10 seconds to get a near fall and the 11-1 victory.

He immediately left the mat with ice on the bridge of his nose, headed to the lobby and was on his way to Washington County Hospital for treatment.

"When he goes and gets it popped into place, he could still wrestle (today)," Stottlemyer said. "We could put a mask on him to protect him. ... It's a matter of if he wants to wrestle. He's our best shot for a title.

Meanwhile, Myers showed why he was the top seed at 152 by quickly hanging an 18-2 pasting on Rockville's Justin Yin in just 3:02 of work. He furiously took a 12-2 lead after the first period after advancing to the quarterfinals via a first-round bye.

Maroulis played her part in the most entertaining and widely watched bout of the evening in her 11-9 overtime victory over Williamsport's Earl Neville.

As the only female in the tournament, Maroulis presented an interesting set of problems for Neville. Maroulis' flexibility enabled her to get out of a number of Neville's holds and earn points for escapes and reversals.

"She is insanely flexible," said Williamsport coach Mike Rechtorovic. "She has been wrestling for a long time and there were times that she looked bigger than (Neville) out there. Her victory wasn't an upset. She was the third seed in the bracket ... had (Neville) won, that would have been the upset."

Damascus led the 18-team tournament with 88 points after the championship quarterfinal round. Magruder was second with 71 1/2, followed by Northwest with 71. North Hagerstown was the top local team in seventh place with 49 points, followed closely by Greencastle with 47 1/2.

North and Greencastle placed four wrestlers in the semifinals. The Hubs are represented by Delon Agee (103), Jim Eichelberger (125), Derek McCarty (171) and Joey Lamp (189), while Greencastle has Zach Whitmer (103), Myers, Dale Nichols (160) and Matt Copenhaver (171) still vying for titles. Hockensmith and Williamsport's Todd Judd (130) are the only other locals in the semifinals.

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