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Baltimore County Sports

Catonsville wrestling squad returns three state qualifiers as season unfolds

Catonsville's Toby Eveleth, top, defeated Pikesville's Zi'Yon Bradley in the 120-pound wrestling match in a dual meet last season. Eveleth returns after finishing 30-4 and qualifying for states.

Although host Sparrows Point had already clinched the victory over Catonsville in the opener of a wrestling tri-meet on Dec. 6, fans were still juiced up for the last bout of the evening.

It featured No. 9 ranked Comet junior Toby Eveleth against No. 12 sophomore Christian Manley, and the 126-pounders didn’t let them down.

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Eveleth got a takedown in the final seconds to secure a 3-2 win for the Comets, who lost the match 60-21.

“That was the featured match, the place was on fire, it was great,” Catonsville coach George Dunn said.

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Dunn’s Comets bounced back to defeat Western Tech, 39-27 in the tri-meet finale and the second-year coach was pleased how the evening unfolded.

“The big guns did what they were supposed to do and we had some big wins,” he said. “It was awesome, I felt pretty good about it for the first match. It was a good test. Once we get our weights settled over the next couple of weeks we will be even better.”

The Comets don’t have 106 or 113-pounders currently and they forfeited those weights, along with the 132-pound bout.

Eveleth, who was 2-0 on opening day, is one of four Comets who qualified for the state tournament last year and three of them return this season. He went 30-4 last season and split four matches in the states, after winning the regional title and finishing second at the Baltimore County tournament.

“He’s feeling good after having shoulder surgery (torn labrum) right after the season,” Dunn said. “He looks great, he’s been working out hard and been cleared to wrestle 100 percent.’

Junior Drew Ritter (138) and older brother Mason Ritter (170) are the other returning state qualifiers and both went 2-0 against Sparrows Point and Western Tech.

Mason was 26-9 last year with one win at states and Drew was 21- 11 overall.

The rest of the squad lacks postseason success, but Dunn is hoping the top trio can help bring them along.

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“We’ve got three state returners coming back which is a real good nucleus for the young kids to build around,” he said.

Junior Corson Durst (182) had an impressive opening night with a pair of pins.

“He wrestled up and he still looked really, really good,” Dunn said.

Sophomore Marquis Gary (195) won his only match and junior heavyweight Isaiah Briscoe, filling in for senior Shawn Traynham (illness) went 1-1.

Gary, Briscoe, Traynham, Zayd Favors and Peyton Lilly are all football players who bring depth to the upper weights.

“‘All our heavyweights played football, coach [John] Youngberg, on our staff, brings a lot of the football guys out,” Dunn said. “They are big strong kids and they love it. They were all here last year.”

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Youngberg is the offensive coordinator for the Catonsville football squad.

Among the other Comets hoping to make an impact this season are juniors Ben Macis (113, 120) and Jaden Cudzillo (132), sophomore Adonis Jovenal (132), senior Brendan Ryan (145), juniors Shilome Robinson (152) and Colin Drohan (160) and senior Sean McFadden (170).

In Dunn’s first season last year, after transferring from Lansdowne, the Comets lost only four dual meets and qualified for the dual meet regionals, where they defeated Dundalk and lost to Montgomery Blair.

Renovations to the wrestling room also has the coach excited.

“We got brand new mats, we’ve got the walls all padded and we’ve got stuff hanging on the walls to help motivate and keep them focused,” Dunn said.

The Comets will get plenty of action this weekend when they travel to Winters Mill for the Grindstone Duals.

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“We will get a lot of matches, that’s where we get guys in shape and see what we are dealing with,” Dunn said.


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