Two milestones preceded No. 7 McDonogh into the second day of the inaugural St. Paul's Duals Tournament yesterday:
On Friday night, the Eagles' beat league rival and sixth-ranked Mount St. Joseph for the first time since 1974, this less than a week after the Eagles won their 26-year-old Ray Oliver Tournament for the first time.
But the Eagles (5-1) ran into a juggernaut in Mercersburg Academy of Pennsylvania, losing, 46-24, to a team ranked No. 5 nationally among private school teams en route to a runner-up finish to Mercersburg. The Blue Storm (13-1) also edged Mount St. Joseph, 33-27.
McDonogh led Mercersburg, 12-0, after a 51-second pin from reserve Chet Naylor (103) and a forfeit to Zak Johns (112, 12-0). But the Blue Storm went up, 34-12, after reeling off seven straight wins.
McDonogh was within striking distance, 34-24, after consecutive fTC first-period pins by Andy Seal (160, 11-1) and Joe Rosenbaum (171, 12-0), but the Blue Storm closed with pins by Jaime Pradera (189) and former Arundel wrestler Trevor Baumgardener (hwt.), a Mercersburg postgraduate.
"We had a chance, but we didn't get some of the early breaks we needed," said Rosenbaum, who has 10 first-period pins. "We didn't know a lot about their middleweights and they surprised us."
Mount St. Joseph (9-2) won a couple of big bouts against Mercersburg, as top-ranked Bryan McDermott (135, 20-0) won a battle of unbeatens, 7-2, over Bobby Monday (9-1), a postgraduate and two-time state titlist for Sherwood of Montgomery County last year.
Also, the Gaels' Steve Lanciotti (130, 18-2) overcame a shoulder injury with 5-0 shutout of three-time Pennsylvania private schools' champ Erik Sheffield (9-1).
McDermott whethered Monday's first-period intensity, countering several deep takedown attempts and breaking a scoreless tie with a second-period escape and takedown for a 3-0 lead. Two duck-under takedowns in the third period secured the win.
"I scrapped out there, took advantage of situations where he was out of position," McDermott said. "Your confidence builds against a tough guy like that, and you realize you can beat him."
Lanciotti broke a scoreless tie with his third-period reversal and had Sheffield fighting off his back at the buzzer.
Among other local wrestlers, Mount St. Joseph's Ryan Herwig (125) improved to 14-0, teammate Mike Moore (152) to 14-2 and St. Paul's Nick Alevrogiannis (hwt.), to 13-2 with 10 pins.
Pub Date: 12/20/98