Westminster coach Henry Mohlhenrich had no answer for why his Owls won the Class 3A-4A North region tournament championship so easily yesterday at Howard.
"This is enough to make you believe in biorhythms or something, because it was easier than I expected," Mohlhenrich said. "There are just so many variables it is hard to predict, but it's always a thrill to win."
The eighth-ranked Owls seemed to have plenty of competition in what appeared to be a tough 20-team region that included three other ranked teams, No. 9 Dulaney, No. 12 South Carroll and No. 14 North Carroll. Among those, South Carroll had beaten the Owls in a dual meet.
In the end it was Centennial of Howard County finishing second, but the Eagles trailed Westminster by far more than an arm's length, 133 to 98.5. South Carroll was third at 98 and Howard fourth at 85.
Although South Carroll had the most individual champions, three, Westminster produced two champs, five third-place finishers and two sixth-place finishers.
The champions for Westminster were Bobby Biden (31-5), who decisioned previously unbeaten and sixth-ranked Brad Thomas (31-1) of Kenwood at 112 pounds, 7-4; and Charlie Minor (25-8), who decisioned Centennial's Matt Augustin, 6-4, in overtime at 145.
Biden was defending regional champ and a two-time county champ who beat Thomas in the regional final in overtime last season.
Minor lost to Augustin earlier this season in overtime, and yesterday rallied from a 4-2 deficit to win the first tournament of his career on a takedown in overtime.
Centennial produced two champions, one second and two thirds. Defending state champion Joon Kim (21-2) of Centennial had an easy time in winning at 189 pounds and Lance Rhodes (20-2) overcame a tough bracket by beating Westminster's Grant Lindsay, Dulaney's Ben Bullock and finally Atholton's Shawn O'Hargan at 119 pounds.
South Carroll's champions included Dan Alberter (130) and two still-unbeaten wrestlers, Mike Chenoweth (171) and Charlie Conaway at 160.
Alberter (25-3) decisioned Dundalk's Travis Williams, 10-0. Williams had pinned his way to the finals.
Conaway (27-0), third in the state last season, had a scare against Howard's Chris Poling (25-4), whom Conaway had pinned in 49 seconds earlier. Poling had Conaway on his back in the third period with the score at 9-9, but Conaway slipped out of a half-nelson to win, 14-9.
"This was my toughest match all season," Conaway said. "He came out slower this time."
Chenoweth, a two-time state champ, ranked No. 1 in the state, breezed to the title with three pins.
North Carroll's second-ranked Tommy Kiler (21-0) won his fourth straight regional title. The defending state champ is also a four-time Carroll County champ.
Kenwood's Chuck Jones (30-1) nipped Liberty's Kevin Jeffress at 125 pounds, 8-7.