While Chesapeake's Brian Eveleth just did what comes naturally for awrestler with his reputation, Glen Burnie's Ron Mear was the surprise of the tournament.

In late May, the two locals captured individual titles in the Freestyle National Qualifying Tournament at Baltimore's Friends School and earned the right to compete in the United States Freestyle Wrestling Federation national tournament.

Slated for July 29 through Aug. 4 at the University of Missouri, the tournament is the largest of its kind for high school wrestlers.

While Eveleth, a 125-pound state champion, easily swept through his 132-pound class, Mear had the more impressive effort, capturing the150-pound crown over the tournament's toughest field.

Among Mear's six victims were Northeast Regional freestyle champion Rob Lord, Mount St. Joseph's Maryland Scholastic Association champion Chad Votta and Northeast Regional Greco-Roman champ Danny DeVivo.

In the championship bout, Mear edged South River's former county champion Brian Hunt by a point. Lord and Votta both were pinned -- Votta lasted justa minute and 40 seconds -- while Mear defeated DeVivo by six points.

Not bad for a guy who missed his entire senior season at Glen Burnie High this past winter due to ineligibility.

"Brian and Ron arealways working out together, and they were both looking forward to (the tournament)," said Brian Eveleth Sr. "Ron beat a lot of good guys."

Neither Eveleth, who is vacationing in Ocean City, nor Mear, who is in South Dakota at a wrestling camp, could be reached about their performances.

But each is expected to return in time for Sunday's Maryland State Cup Championships at Potomac's Bullis Prep School inMontgomery County.

"Both of them were outstanding, but Mear was awesome. He had about three or four state champions in his weight class and did them all in," said Cornell Bass, the director of sports information for the Maryland State Wrestling Association.

"Eveleth looked very good. I think people heard his name and just ran away from his weight class."

Eveleth's fifth-place finish in the postseason senior national wrestling tournament qualified him as an All-American. The honor student compiled a 34-1 record and became The Anne Arundel County Sun's Fall Guys champion.

Eveleth is headed for the University of Pennsylvania on a wrestling scholarship.

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