With their five champs, one runner-up and two third-place finishers, the Old Mill Patriots easily separated themselves from the rest of the 12-team field, winning by a 209-137 1/2margin over second-place Arundel.
It's the 11th county championship for the Patriots, their second straight.
"We've been practicing very hard and building up to this," said coach Vern Hines. "Next is the regional tournament and our job there is to put us in the best possible position to win a state championship. I'm real proud of the kids, it was a complete team effort."
Fittingly setting the tone in the final round for the Patriots was senior 125-pounder Chris Combs, who became only the third wrestler in Anne Arundel to win four county titles after his 11-4 decision over Severna Park's Dan Horne.
Following Combs atop the podium for the Patriots was Eric Hill (135), James Fleming (140), DaveHicks -- who came away with a 3-0 decision over Arundel's top-seeded Greg Klingler at 145 -- and Antoine Cooksey (160).
Drew Bowers' 9-0 decision against Overlea's James Laubach at 135 pounds earned the Owings Mills senior (29-2) his 134th career victory, his second county crown in four title-bout appearances, and helped the No. 7 Eagles dethrone Overlea at Western Tech.
Coach Guy Pritzker's Eagles (219.5 points) captured the 38th annual event by beating out runner-up Franklin (194.5 points), ranked sixth in the area and eighth in the state, and No. 5 Overlea (176.5, third).
-- Lem Satterfield
First-year heavyweight Matt Belcastro won his first crown, and 140-pound teammate Richard Johnson, his second straight as Patterson coach Troy Stevenson captured his third straight tournament crown at Mervo. Paul Eline (103), Jimmy Walker (145) and Kennard Wheeler (189) also won titles as the Clippers out-scored runner-up Poly, 234-174.
-- Lem Satterfield
Pub Date: 2/21/99