Patterson 3-peats as city's dual titlist; Clippers score 7 pins to take 42-28 victory against stubborn Poly


Patterson scored pins in each of its seven victories -- including three straight from 140 pounds to 152 -- to beat Poly yesterday, 42-28, and clinch its third straight Baltimore dual-meet title in coach Troy Stevenson's four seasons.

The Clippers improved to 7-0 against city opponents (9-5 overall), and coach Kirk Stehman's Engineers slipped to 6-1 and were city runners-up for the second straight season.

Poly was close, at 18-13, after Chuck Kratz came through with a pin at 135 pounds. Ahead 8-2, he finished Caleb Moore in 4: 23.

Then Patterson's "triple threat" hit the mat, and two-time city and region champ Richard Johnson (140), Jimmy Walker (145) and Terry Blackwell (152) all nailed their opponents to build a 36-13 lead.

Poly would have needed pins (each worth six team points) in the remaining four bouts to win by one point, and at least three pins and a technical fall (worth five points) to salvage a tie. The match ended mathematically when Poly's Josh Vizzi (160) won, but by a decision, for three team points.

Patterson followed with its seventh pin from Chris Price (171) for a 42-16 lead before Poly wrestlers Keith Eure (189) and city runner-up Dennis Scott (heavyweight) won by default and pin, respectively.

"Caleb Moore's part of our threat, but he was kind of not feeling well," said Patterson's Johnson, a junior who improved to 23-2. "Otherwise, we got all we could get from everybody. We wrestled like a family."

Johnson never has been on a Patterson team that has not swept both the city's dual meet and tournament titles. Yesterday, the Clippers appeared ready for a three-peat as tournament champs.

Patterson led 12-7 after the first four bouts, getting pins from Paul Eline (103) and Angelo DePasquale (119).

Chonan Bell (125) held off the Clippers' Mike Saunders, 6-5, but Patterson demonstrated pinning power early as Mike McDonald (130) flattened Sean Gallagher in 2: 59.

After Eline headlocked Poly's Reginald Brooks for a pin at 2: 59, Poly got a 15-4 rout by Angelo Pirali (112), who nearly pinned Darrell Oliver in the third period. But DePasquale regained the momentum, planting Roy Cheeks in 1: 30.

"Coach told me to go out and get a pin, and I was able to do the job, but Paul Eline and Mike McDonald -- they're the ones who had big matches," said DePasquale, a junior. "We wrestled this one for Jimmy Walker and the other seniors who've worked their butts off for four years."

After Johnson pinned Andy Posil in 1: 02, Walker (20-5) used several pinning combinations against veteran Lonnie Williams, building a 19-5 lead that included 11 near-fall points.

Williams, however, showed the fight that earned him third place at last year's city tournament, battling out of a guillotine pinning maneuver twice, a split cradle once and, later, a reverse half-nelson. Williams was finally done in with 32 seconds left in the bout.

"I've been working on my pinning rotations, but he's a good wrestler, so I was surprised I was able to do what I did," Walker said.

Four of the Clippers' pins came in otherwise close bouts. Eline and McDonald were down 2-0 and 2-1, respectively, before planting their opponents. DePasquale's bout was scoreless, and Blackwell had only a one-point lead.

"I thought it should have been closer," said Poly's Scott, who is 21-3. "But we gave a good fight for a young team with only four starting seniors."

Pub Date: 2/05/99

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