WESTMINSTER -- North Carroll High had three individual champions and six others placed second, as the Panthers won the Region I 3A-4A wrestling tournament at Westminster High yesterday.
North Carroll, the defending champion, finished with 210 points and will take 10 wrestlers to the state tournament next weekend. Eastern Vo Tech was second with 104 and Perry Hall third with 92.
The Panthers breezed through the first two rounds of the tournament before struggling in the championship round. By then, it was too late for the rest of the competition.
"We came into the match confident and feeling that we could win, but we also knew that if we were overconfident, we could easily lose," said Dave Foster, the Panthers' 152-pounder. "We're a team that has a few good individuals, an overall solid squad and an outstanding coach."
The three champions for North Carroll yesterday were Foster, Tom Dell (119) and Jason Myers (140). Foster and Dell easily defeated their opponents: Dell over Bel Air's Scott Birth, 10-2, and Foster over Dundalk's Bobby Gorsuch, 10-1.
Myers jumped out to a 5-0 lead in the first 48 seconds of his match, and held on to decision Woodlawn's Reggie Scott, 7-6. Scott scored a takedown in the last 15 seconds of the match to pull within one point.
But North Carroll, which had nine wrestlers in the finals, was on the opposite end of several other close matches. The Panthers' Jeremy Myers (103) lost to Elkton's Mike Greene, 5-3; Chad Miller (112) was beaten by Randallstown's Aaron Grollman, 7-6; Justin Deibel (125) fell to EVT's Jay Gerst, 9-7; and heavyweight Jim Dill lost to Woodlawn's Ivan Brown, 3-1.
In each of those matches, the score was determined in the last 1 minute, 15 seconds. The closest call went to Brown, who took Dill down for two points with nine seconds left. Greene won his match with a takedown with 1:11 remaining, while Miller got four points in the last 16 seconds of his match. Gerst managed to slip out of a head lock and gain control for a takedown with 45 seconds left.
Other champions were EVT's John Sieracki (130), Westminster's Justin Ott (135) and Boomer Warfield (189), Kenwood's Brian Persinger (145), Perry Hall's Steve Amenta (160) and Randallstown's Mike Jensen (171).
Persinger, Amenta and Jensen each did not allow a point in their final matches. There were no pins in the championship round.