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Missing piece

Wildcats' Baker still in running for elusive West title

February 25, 2011|By ANDREW MASON | andrewm@herald-mail.com
  • North Hagerstown's Brendon Colbert, rear, defeated Liberty's Ryan Craig by technical fall in the 112-pound quarterfinals of the Maryland Class 2A-1A West region tournament Friday at North.
By Joe Crocetta/Staff Photographer

HAGERSTOWN — Kemper Baker has seemingly done it all in his high school wrestling career.

Among the Williamsport senior’s school-record 126 career victories are a state title, four straight county crowns and several other tournament championships.

The one title missing from his résumé he can add this weekend at the 32nd annual Maryland Class 2A-1A West region tournament at North Hagerstown.

“This is like the one thing I still haven’t done,” Baker said. “I definitely want to win it.”

Not only has he never won a region title, he surprisingly has never even advanced to the finals. He finished fifth in the region at 112 pounds as a freshman, third at 119 as a sophomore and fourth at 125 last year.

As the No. 1 seed at 140 this year, Baker opened with a first-period pin against North Carroll’s Jake Seipp in Friday’s quarterfinals.

If he gets past Winters Mill’s Cody Sharkey in this morning’s semifinals, he’ll face either Century’s Kurt Buckingham or Northern Garrett’s Matt Thomas in the finals this afternoon.

Baker is hoping for a rematch with Thomas, who beat him 4-2 earlier this year.

“I’d like to see him in the finals, definitely,” Baker said. “He beat me in the regular season, so it’d be nice to get it back now that it really counts.”

The West is no easy region. Of the 26 Washington County wrestlers who qualified for the tournament, only five emerged as quarterfinal winners Friday.

Joining Baker in the semis are teammates Bryan Davis (103 pounds) and Zach Shoemaker (145) and North Hagerstown’s Brendon Colbert (112) and Kenneth Burrs (160).

Shoemaker, the county’s other No. 1 seed, also won by fall in the quarterfinals. He was the region runner-up at 145 last year.

“It’s definitely the toughest tournament of the year so far, and I came here to win it,” he said. “I definitely don’t want to settle for second this year.”

Colbert, a freshman, teched out Liberty’s Ryan Craig 18-3 in the quarterfinals to up his county-best season record to 30-1.

Colbert is seeded second in the weight class to Catoctin senior Jon Sweeney. They’re 1-1 against each other this season.

“I’m kind of hoping I do get to face him again,” Colbert said. “I’ll just go out and do my best. We’re 1-1 against each other. I’d like to have that extra win against him going into states.”

Davis won by major decision in the quarterfinals, while Burrs scored a takedown with 10 seconds left to edge North Carroll’s Greg Dell 7-6.

After falling in the quarterfinals, six county wrestlers prevailed in first-round consolation bouts to advance to today’s action. The consolation winners were North Hagerstown’s Mike Tobery (103) and Duncan Yeisley (119); Boonsboro’s Joe Minoglio (140), Jon Best (160) and Bucky Miller (189); and Williamsport’s Reggie Russ (160).

The top four finishers in each weight class advance to next weekend’s state tournament.

Md. 2A-1A West Tournament
at North Hagerstown

Team scores (through the quarterfinals): 1. Winters Mill 49.5; 2. Southern Garrett 38; 3. South Carroll 34; 4. Century 33.5; 5. Northern Garrett 31; 6. Fort Hill 24; 7. (tie) Williamsport, Catoctin, Liberty 20; 10. Middletown 17; 11. Mountain Ridge 14; 12. North Hagerstown 11.5; 13. North Carroll 11; 14. Walkersville 6.5; 15. (tie) Manchester Valley, Brunswick, FSK 5; 18. (tie) Smithsburg, Boonsboro, Oakdale, Allegany 0.
Quarterfinals
103 — Ozias (SG) p. Donoghue (Ce) :38; Davis (Wi) m.d. Thomas (MR) 15-5; McAleer (MV) d. Tobery (NH) 5-2; Valdez (WM) p. Parlon (Mi) 1:51.
112 — Sweeney (Ca) p. Roberts (Mi) :33; Smolly (Ce) fft; Shaffer (SG) m.d. Johnson (Wa) 10-1; Colbert (NH) t.f. Craig (Li) 18-3, 3:06.
119 — Kuegler (Li) dflt. Janowitz (MV); Atwell (SC) d. Yeisley (NH) 8-4; Osselburn (NG) d. Stewart (SG) 3-2; Thompson (FH) p. Roberts (Sm) 4:50.
125 — Wampler (SC) p. Murphy (SG) 2:48; Cullison (WM) p. Baker (Wi) 4:42; Finzel (NG) d. Foster (Br) 3-1; Haas (NC) m.d. Clearwood (Mi) 12-1.
130 — Capobianco (Mi) d. Shea (Li) 2-1; Cook (WM) d. Fritz (NC) 2-0; Chandler (FH) p. Guilday (Ca) :46; Tye (Ce) t.f. Harbaugh (Sm) 5:51.
135 — Stavish (SC) d. Markosky (Li) 7-4; Darr (FH) d. Wilson (Ce) 8-6; Bartholomew (Br) d. Wilkes (Mi) 4-2; Steine (WM) t.f. Ardinger (Wi) 15-0.
140 — Baker (Wi) p. Seipp (NC) 1:19; Sharkey (WM) d. Patterson (MR) 8-1; Buckingham (Ce) p. Minoglio (Bo) 3:41; Thomas (NG) p. Candler (FH) 1:21.
145 — Shoemaker (Wi) p. Kamp (NG) 4:45; Skipper (SG) d. Ryder (Ce) 3-2; Gaunt (SC) p. Michael (NC) 1:35; Schildt (Ca) p. McKoy (NH) 2:35.
152 — Ozias (SG) m.d. Harvantine (Ce) 11-2; Francis (Ca) m.d. Davis (Wi) 12-1; Ziegler (FSK) d. Scott (Sm) 5-3; Cullison (WM) p. Kamp (NG) 1:28.
160 — Reiter (SC) d. Best (Bo) 8-2; Burrs (NH) d. Dell (NC) 7-6; Bender (FH) d. Marple (SG) 2-0; Greene (Li) m.d. Russ (Wi) 13-3.
171 — Scheffel (SG) p. Craig (Li) 2:55; Fung (SC) d. McHose (NH) 7-3; Chang (WM) d. Farley (NC) 9-5; Hermann (Mi) p. Sellers (Ce) 1:44.
189 — Wright (MR) p. Knox (FSK) :53; Opel (NG) p. Miller (Bo) :53; Schuster (NC) d. Schmitz (SC) 4-3; Ziegler (Mi) d. Cavey (Ca) 4-2.
215 — Antrobus (Ce) p. Baylor (Wi) 1:40; Cervi (NG) p. Peters (FSK) 3:00; Belle (Li) fft.; Winters (MR) p. Simonica (Oa) :42.
285 — Kozera (WM) p. Bassani (Li) :35; Miller (SG) p. Kerr (Mi) 3:18; Kruger (Ce) dflt. Cody (Wi); Tucker (Wa) t.f. Fisher (Br) 17-2.

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