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ANNAPOLIS PANTHERS

THE BALTIMORE SUN

Head coach: Dave Gehrdes (12th season)

Assistant coaches: Sam Salamy and Ray Ward

1990-1991 record: 13-1, tied Old Mill and Broadneck for 4A leaguetitle, third in county tournament

Returnees: Seniors Chip Cochran(145), Tom Sfakiyanudas (135), Ford Baumgardener (140), Demond Galloway (hvy.), Ira Robbins (130), Seth Robbins (125) and Ray Henson (171); juniors Kevin Owen (103), Brandon Tinker (189); sophomore Mike Zambernardi (103).

Newcomers: Seniors Nick Samaras (130) and Dan Flynn (160).

Coach's outlook: "We've got 10 varsity starters back, so we've got a pretty balanced team. But as always, everything's going to come down to matchups. I know Broadneck and Old Mill have got a lotback and Chesapeake isn't looking bad either."

Anne Arundel County Sun outlook: Coming off a year when the Panthers won the Arundel High Invitational Tournament and also a share of the county dual-meet title -- each for the first time in Gehrdes' tenure -- the head coach feels like he may be on a roll. Meetings with the Bruins and the Patriots are just four days apart. And with four state qualifiers back and a host of solid wrestlers spread throughout a balanced lineup, thiscould be the year the Panthers win the county crown outright. It's going to take consistency throughout the season, however.

ANNAPOLIS CHRISTIAN

Head coach: Dick Bitzer (third season)

Assistant coach:Dan Clabbers

1990-1991 record: 5-3 as an independent

Returnees: Seniors Todd Painter (130) and Pete Stone (152); juniors Aaron Fagan (125) and Chris Barber (171); sophomores Seth Adema (119), Brad Harrison (135) and Dave Sloat (140).

Newcomers: Junior Steve Burr (145); sophomores Matt McClellan (112) and Sean Brown (189); freshman Matt Einstein (hvy.).

Coach's outlook: "We had a real big turnover with our squad, so we're in a rebuilding year. We lost seven kids to graduation and transfers so it's hard to say how the new kids are going to develop. Our strong point will probably be in the lower weight classes. They're coming around. The more the kids are on the mat, the better it's going to be for them. We have a lot of new kids who are really committed and really working hard. We're a very, very small school, so we don't have the kids to draw from, but the ones who have come out have really stuck with it."

Anne Arundel County Sun outlook: Bitzer is doing the right thing in taking the wait-and-see approach. The Eagles are inexperienced, but so our many of their opponents. Awinning season will be difficult to manufacture, but not impossible.

SPALDING CAVALIERS

Head coach: Jim Nemeth (sixth season)

Assistant coaches: None

1990-1991 record: 5-4, third in the Maryland Scholastic Association C Conference

Returnees: Seniors Osric Prioleau (171), Ralph Ellis (hvy.) and Carlos Santoni (160); juniors Jack Bailey (152), Chris Snead (119), Mike Tekippe (171), Tae Kim (189) and Ryan Neenan (135).

Newcomers: Sophomores Steve Angelis (125) and Mike Reisner (103); freshmen Matt Gomes (145) and Jason Hardman (112).

Coach's outlook: "A lot depends on whether the guys wrestle like I know they can. We had 20 kids out and we're fitting them in here and there. But we've got four kids with decent experience. Our senior captain, Osric, is a fourth-year starter. And Ellis, a football player, was fourth in the Curley tournament last weekend -- the first time in many years. We start our C Conference on Dec. 18 and we hope to improve, little by little."

Anne Arundel County Sun outlook: After coming off their best season in Nemeth's tenure, the Cavaliers are encouraged and ready to tackle tougher competition. To that end, Nemeth has added an improved Severna Park squad to his schedule. They'll also wrestle twice against up-and-coming Annapolis Area Christian.

ARUNDEL WILDCATS

Head coach: Buddy Hepfer (21st season)

Assistant coaches: Mark Fraser, Sean Huyer and Jeff Amdur

1990-1991 record: 7-7, seventh in county tournament

Returnees: Seniors Phil Stratton (160) and Rick Gladwell (135); juniors Greg Booth (171) and Chad Bawell (119); sophomore Phil Meenan (103).

Coach's outlook: "I have a very young team, and I still can't tell how good we are from our scrimmages. It may take (yesterday's Meade Tournament) and a few matches before I'll have a better idea. But we had 42 kids come out, which is more than in the past few years. And we've got a full varsity lineup.You've got to go with what you've got, a week at a time. But our guys should be all right, if they stick it out."

Anne Arundel County Sun outlook: Hepfer's top prospects are Booth and Meenan, who had combined for 46 victories after the county tournament. But the veteran coach wants to avoid embarrassing losses like last year's shutout against Old Mill and another huge setback against Broadneck. So while themany newcomers get acclimated to the county's stiff competition, guys like Bawell and Stratton will have to come up with some big victories down the stretch to help the Wildcats improve on last year's disappointing season. Only then can the season be deemed a success.

BROADNECK BRUINS

Head coach: John Mayberry (ninth season)

Assistant coach: David Poe

1990-1991 record: 13-1, tied Old Mill and Annapolis for 4A league title, county tournament runners-up

Returnees: Seniors Shawn Miller (119), Josh Marder (125), Vin Gerrior (130), Chris McTammany (152), Seth Lopatkiewicz (160), Dave Macauley (171) and Cliff McClain (189); junior Charlie Bennett (112).

Newcomer: Junior Nick Pantazes (103).

Coach's outlook: "I'll tell you, it's going tobe tough, because Annapolis has got a lot back and so does Old Mill.But our kids have been working hard this year. It's going to come down to how good everyone is wrestling the day that the teams meet."

Anne Arundel County Sun outlook: The Bruins' strength begins at the bottom, where state champion Bennett and state runner-up Miller return. But unlike last year's bottom-heavy lineup, the Bruins' have balance among upper weights as well. So that takes pressure off of both the light and middleweight wrestlers and should foil more than a few strategies of opposing coaches. Still, Annapolis and Old Mill are equally loaded, and Chesapeake is a sleeper. The Bruins, however, have little depth beyond their starters, and an injury to a key wrestler may have cost them a better shot at last year's county tournament. They'll have to stay healthy to repeat last year's accomplishments.

CHESAPEAKE COUGARS

Head coach: Tom Slichter (seventh season)

Assistantcoaches: Marvin Pyles and Waldo Walker

1990-1991 record: 8-5, fourth in the county tournament

Returnees: Seniors Steve Kupp (145), Kevin Sellers (hvy.), Shawn Somers (171), Ron Shirk (152) and Tony Perillo (160); juniors Ron Alexander (125) and Mark Downey (103); sophomores Doug Horton (135), Rob Zittle (130) and Steve Shirk (119).

Newcomers: Senior Rich Brown (112); junior Chuck McConnell (189).

Coach's outlook: "The improvement is hard to determine right now, but I think it's going to be a very interesting season. All of our kids are working hard and they have good experience. Most of the other teams are senior-laden, so we may be a year or two away."

Anne ArundelCounty Sun outlook: The Cougars' record of a year ago as well as their performance in the county tournament were the best in Slichter's tenure. All but one wrestler -- state champion Brian Eveleth -- returnfrom last year's squad. And word has spread quickly around the county that the Cougars are not to be overlooked. Outside of Old Mill, Annapolis and Broadneck, Chesapeake -- with four county place winners inthe lineup -- may be the county's best overall team.

GLEN BURNIE GOPHERS

Head coach: Bruce Sider (12th season)

Assistant coach: Dave Schneeberg

1990-1991 record: 0-11, 12th in county tournament

Returnees: Seniors Mark Nevin (125), Greg Blurton (130), Mike Kubic (135), Chris Smith (140), Richard Gordan (145) and John Wehn (160); juniors Tony Norfolk (152) and Paul Musil (hvy.).

Newcomers: Sophomores Eric Scheppske (189), Jesse Hartwell (145), Keith Volkman (171), Tierre Thomas (171) and Brian Bauer (103); freshmen Kevin Soistman (112) and Brian Parks (119).

Coach's outlook: "Last year, we had forfeits and we were shut out in two matches. But 42 kids came out this year, and I've got 38 who stayed. For the first time in six years, I can field a full varsity and junior varsity team from top to bottom. We've got some kids who show some promise, and they're hard-nosed. I feel like I can get back on a roll and toughen these kids without anyof them breaking on me."

Anne Arundel County Sun outlook: If the Gophers win just one match this year, they'll be doing better than they did in all of last season. But success won't be measured as much by individual wins and losses as by individual progress. In the recentpast, Sider, a veteran coach, has had to start from the basics. He says he hopes this group will become more advanced as the season goes along.

MEADE MUSTANGS

Head coach: Walt Puller (first season)

Assistant coaches: Rick Terry and Ben Schwalb

1990-1991 record: 2-10, eighth in the county tournament

Returnees: Senior Richard Pachoca (103), Bill Fisher (130), Phil Giegerich (145) and Jeff Katona (hvy.); juniors Jess Cruz (135), Mike Walker (140) and Mike Butz (189).

Newcomers: Sophomores Mike Bell (125), Jacob Muehls (152) and Joe Martz (160); freshman Mike Pomeroy (171).

Coach's outlook: "I've got four solid wrestlers in Pachoca, Walker, Fisher and Katona. Katona was at 189 last year and fell short of some expectations. But he's been a pleasant surprise and his intensity and leadership have improveda lot since last year. And in scrimmages against North County and Arundel, the kids in general showed a lot of heart."

Anne Arundel County Sun outlook: Meade, having graduated county runners-up Luther Scott and Pat Williams, is looking to improve on last year's disappointing season. And with a respectable turnout, Puller, who replaced first-year coach Sam Pandullo, feels he has the depth to do it. But in addition to consistently strong performances from the four key returnees, the Mustangs will need a couple of the marginal wrestlers to pull some surprises.

NORTH COUNTY KNIGHTS

Head coach: Chuck Markiewicz (second season)

Assistant coaches: Song Chang and Tom Taylor

1990-1991 record: 5-7, 10th in the county tournament

Returnees: Seniors Mike Radulovich (152), Kevin Harris (hvy.) and Tim Takovich (160); juniors David Thomas (125), Jamie Raynor (130) and Mark Collins (171); sophomore Corey Fowler (hvy.).

Coach's outlook: "We had 23 kids come out, which is about the same as last year. But we had four starters who for one reason or another didn't come out for the team -- one of them transferred to Mount St. Joseph. We're going to have to look for success in terms of individuals, because we're going to be giving up (forfeits in) two or three weight classes and it's hard to winwhen you're giving up that much."

Anne Arundel County Sun outlook: In his first season last year, Markiewicz got the Knights off to anauspicious start, including 103-pounder Sammy Paik's fourth-place state meet finish. But talents like Paik are gone, and Markiewicz will have to work his magic with an inexperienced group. This year, the county's level of competitiveness has reached its pinnacle, with improved teams like Severna Park and Northeast, so Markiewicz has his work cut out for him.

NORTHEAST EAGLES

Head coach: Al Kohlhafer (18th season)

Assistant coaches: Chuck Yocum and Bill Royer

1990-1991 record: 2-10, 11th in county tournament

Returnees: Juniors Al Grunder (152/160) and Pat Rucker (171); sophomores Matt Jewer (125) and Lonnie Harris (119/130).

Newcomers: Junior Jeremy Funk (152/160); sophomore Steve Smiddy (119); freshmen Mike Kusick (112) and Marty Kusick (103).

Coach's outlook: "We had 26 kids come out, and right now we can field a whole team. We're really excited about this season, but there are just too many other good teams out there. Our objectiveis to do the best that we can, individually. We've got some real tough kids, and next year, it looks like we're going to get some qualityoff of the junior leagues."

Anne Arundel County Sun outlook: Kohlhafer already has some quality, in the form of the junior league state champion Kusick twins and Smiddy, a transfer from Maryland Scholastic Association power Mount St. Joseph. What's left is for the rest ofthe Eagles to whip themselves into contention. They'll need to sandwich good performances around Grunder, who won 16 matches last season,and Funk, a county runner-up junior varsity wrestler. Then they'll definitely improve on last year's record -- possibly even going .500.

OLD MILL PATRIOTS

Head coach: Mike Hampe (17th season)

Assistant coach: Jay Braunstein

1990-1991 record: 15-1, tied Broadneck andAnnapolis for 4A league title; won county, regional and third straight Class 4A state tournament titles

Returnees: Seniors Steve Lundstrom (112), Vitas Dulys (119), Young Chang (140), John Bliss (145), Brian Layman (171), Ernie Longazel (189) and Don Marco (hvy.); juniorsRick Oleszczuk (130) and Todd Hultgren (152).

Newcomers: Juniors Kevin Seavey (130), Kenneth Seavey (135) and Brad Boetig (160); sophomores Jason Bryant (103) and Joe Delong (125).

Coach's outlook: "Our goal is to win a fourth state title, but there's just too much that I haven't seen outside of the county. County-wise, we lost five andBroadneck lost two to graduation -- and they beat us last year. And Annapolis has got a lot of balance. I'll know a little more after this weekend (and yesterday's Annapolis Tournament)."

Anne Arundel County Sun outlook: Hampe has five state place winners back, and several reserve and junior varsity wrestlers are always pushing the starters in practice. The Patriots can win an unprecedented fourth straight state title, but the obstacles include Annapolis and Broadneck in thecounty, and Montgomery County's Quince Orchard at the states.

ST. MARY'S SAINTS

Head coach: Brad Best (third season)

Assistant coach: John Ruland

1990-1991 record: 12-2, won second straight MSA B Conference dual-meet title

Returnees: Seniors Phil MacWilliams (135) and Carl Watkins (145); juniors Dan White (125), Todd Roberts (140), Pete Church (152) and Scott Thompson (171); sophomore Reed Smith (119).

Newcomers: Seniors Briggs Carroll (130) and Mark Poole (189);junior Tim O'Neill (160); freshmen Tim Klepper (103) and Dave Carroll (112).

Coach's outlook: "I expect that Phil, Danny and Scott will carry the team. Poole wrestled at McNamara two years ago and our two freshmen wrestled as Navy juniors. We'll have tough going early with the Curley and Annapolis tournaments and Riverdale Baptist, but -- barring injuries -- we should be OK for our first conference match with Boys' Latin."

Anne Arundel County Sun outlook: Best didn't think his Saints could repeat as champions last year. They did. Asked if the squad could win a third, Best said, "I don't know." But with White (19-8 last year), MacWilliams (23-7), each of whom have outside shots at MSA titles, and Thompson (18-11), who was second in the recent Curley tournament, the Saints still will be trouble for conference foes.

SEVERN ADMIRALS

Head coach: Bob Brogenrief (eighth season)

Assistant coach: Rolf Hill

1990-1991 record: 0-8, dethroned as MSAC Conference co-champs

Returnees: Senior Dave Astler (119), Mike Brown (125/130), Sanjay Manickam (135) and Scott Lowe (135/140); sophomores Mark Robinson (145) and Chris Thompson (112).

Newcomers: Freshmen Chris Nicholson (103), Chris Bohlman (125) and Justin Russell (160).

Coach's outlook: "Except for (matches against) Spalding andAnnapolis Area Christian School, we're in the MSA C Conference and we're looking to win some this year. Last year, we gave up a lot of points because we could fill up to the 140-pound weight class but we'd forfeit the rest. But I know we're going to be better this year because we had ninth- and 11th-graders. This year, we've got experienced seniors and some freshmen who aren't pushovers."

Anne Arundel County Sun outlook: Coach Brogenrief's goals include his wrestlers winningmore than last year; not only overall matches, but more bouts individually. The Admirals were MSA C Conference co-champions two years ago, when Joey Lopez finished fourth in the MSA tournament. Lopez' finish remains the highest any Severn wrestler has ever placed. But if Brogenrief has his way, that won't be the case after this year.

SEVERNA PARK FALCONS

Head coach: Dave Caprio (second season)

Assistant coaches: Carter Rigsbee and Chris Carver

1990-1991 record: 2-12, ninth in county tournament

Returnees: Seniors Scott Woodland (145),Paul Ehemann (140), Aaron Cree (189), Dave Rupert (130), Randy Wallace (145) and Todd Carlton (135); juniors Bieu Voung (130/135) and Shane Ireland (130).

Newcomers: Junior Costa Mamalis (135/140); freshmen Jamie Kuch (103) and George Mamalis (112).

Coach's outlook: "We've got some good experience in our lineup and I feel that there aresome teams on our schedule who I think we can beat. In the county, Ithink we can go .500 during the season, but our time should come in the tournaments at the end of the year."

Anne Arundel County Sun outlook: Woodland and Ehemann are the only state qualifiers returning and only Woodland -- the Falcons' first county champion in years -- placed in the state meet. Cree was fourth in the county. Under Caprio,the Falcons' program seems to be picking up. So a .500 record is within the realm of possibility. Severna Park won't challenge teams likeAnnapolis, Old Mill or Broadneck, but should be competitive with Chesapeake, Arundel and Meade. The key will be spreading the balance throughout the lineup.

SOUTHERN BULLDOGS

Head coach: Tyrone Neal (second season)

Assistant coach: Scott Jacoby

1990-1991 record: 8-4, sixth in county tournament, second in region, Class 2A/1A state meet runners-up

Returnees: Seniors Robert Burley (hvy.) and Brad Gammon (160); junior Sherrard Neal (112); sophomore Harold Glenn (125).

Newcomers: Senior Fred D'Argenio (171); freshmen Tromaine Graves (145), Danny Day (135/140) and David D'Argenio (140).

Coach's outlook: "I only have three seniors on the team and we have some ninth-graders who will start, but I think I've got some kids who can hold theirown in this county. After last year, I'd have to say we're in the process of rebuilding."

Anne Arundel County Sun outlook: Burley and Sherrard Neal are the only returning state winners to a squad that surprised the field in the state meet. But Neal got a pleasant surprisein the D'Argenio brothers, who transferred to Southern from wrestling-rich Stroudsberg, Pa. Others in the lineup with experience are former junior leaguers Day and Graves, each of whom placed highly in the states last season. Some county matches will be rough on the Bulldogs, who should excel in the regionals and states.

SOUTH RIVER SEAHAWKS

Head coach: Charles "Chilly" Orme (seventh season)

Assistant coach: Lance Evans

1990-1991 record: 10-3, county 3A/2A league champs, fifth in the county tournament

Returnees: Seniors Billy Whitcher (130), Greg Nida (125), Steve Glasgow (140) and Lonnie Schreffler (152); juniors Jarron Hairston (171) and Matt King (189).

Newcomers: Freshman Travis Murdock (103).

Coach's outlook: "We had 29 guys come out, but we never have big numbers. On paper, we certainly don'tlook like the teams we've had in the past, but neither does Southern. But after Old Mill, Broadneck and Annapolis, I think we're somewhere in there with Severna Park, Arundel and Chesapeake. I think we're capable of winning seven, nine or 10 matches, which is decent. I stillthink we're the team to beat in the 3A/2A."

Anne Arundel County Sun outlook: Gone are two-time state runner-up Brian Hunt, county champion Brian Anderson and Jim Chomas, who was third. But the Seahawks return six solid wrestlers, including county and regional runner-up Whitcher, who was fourth in the state, and Nida, a regional champ two years ago. Newcomer Murdock is a former junior-league state champ. TheSeahawks should be competitive throughout the county, but Orme shouldn't forget about an improved Northeast squad.

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