No. 1 Curley rolls over Gilman; Friars overcome injuries to capture second straight MIAA dual-meet crown


P. J. Kirhagis was among the Curley wrestlers who lost when his No. 1 Friars won a regular-season dual meet at eighth-ranked Gilman 13 days ago.

At the time, Kirhagis, a 145-pound regular, was physically out-matched by Alex Cressman. And after using all of his allotted injury time, Kirhagis had to default with a shoulder injury.

Last night at Curley, Kirhagis faced another Gilman wrestler named Alex -- this one being Alex Enten.

But this time, Kirhagis' 16-3 major decision clinched a 46-15 rout for the Friars' second straight Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association dual-meet title.

The Friars overcame various bumps and bruises to win all but the last three bouts. And with five bouts left, the suspense was over, as Kirhagis' impressive victory already had given Curley an insurmountable 39-0 lead.

"I went out and gave my all, and it felt good to get back in the mix," said Kirhagis, a senior and an MIAA runner-up at 130 pounds last season.

"I was favoring the shoulder a little bit, not putting too much pressure on it," Kirhagis said. "I tried to compensate with my right arm."

Kirhagis' second-ranked teammate Paul Boettcher (152) added a 16-3 major decision over Tim Webb. Then Matt Charvat (160) earned a measure of revenge for Kirhagis, edging Cressman, 6-5, and giving Curley an overall lead of 46-0.

Charvat is rebounding from a knee injury which forced him from the previous meeting with Gilman.

"It was nice to see Matt go out and win like that. I think it was a confidence-booster for him," Kirhagis said. "But that kid [Cressman] is good. No excuses. I had to default, or whatever, but he was the better guy when he beat me."

Early on, Curley got big wins from freshman Mike Wood (103), in his first varsity MIAA match, and second-ranked Darien Kess (112), who moved up from 103.

Wood, who is 16-1 on the JV team, routed Khudor Annous, 9-0, despite having only a year of junior-league experience. Kess scored a 16-6 rout over veteran Thomas Yoon, with his eight takedowns raising his single-season school-record total to 152.

Pinning for the Friars were Brian Kirhagis (119) and Thomas Boettcher (135), both in the first period. Third-ranked Antwaun Lide (125) scored nine takedowns in his 23-8 technical-fall victory.

And in a 12-2 rout of Gilman's Tyrone Bowie, third-ranked Brian Bricker (130) turned a 2-2 tie into a 7-2 lead with his five-point Peterson roll in the second period. Bricker totaled six near-fall points.

Curley was without injured 112-pound starter Tim Williams, who should return for this weekend's MIAA Tournament at Mount St. Joseph. In addition to the injuries to Charvat, P. J. Kirhagis and Williams, who has a foot injury, Bricker was nursing an injured finger.

"Half of our team has been sick or injured," said coach Alan Gebhart. "But we wrestled beautifully in spite of that, and, to tell you the truth, I was shocked."

Among the only bright spots for Gilman was a first-period pin by state champ Mike Faust (Hwt.), and a 3-2 victory by Brian Lewis (171) over Curley's Pat Curran. Gilman's state champ Damien Davis (189) received a forfeit.

Lewis avenged an earlier 8-7 overtime loss to Curran.

"Pat Curran came out with a lot of fight. He's tough; wrestled a good match," said Lewis, an All-Metro football lineman. "We felt good coming in. Overall, though, some of us wrestled well, some of us didn't. It's a mental thing we have to get over quickly."

Pub Date: 2/10/99

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