While the Chesapeake wrestling team continued to state its case as the county's best with a tri-meet sweep of North County and Southern on Friday, parity began to surface this week among teams down the list from the No. 7 Cougars.
It began on Wednesday night when unranked Arundel upset No. 10 Severna Park, 42-21.
It continued on Friday night when the Falcons regrouped to earn a 40-40 tie with No. 9 Old Mill, ending a string of 75 straight regular-season county wins for the Patriots dating to the 1996-97 season.
The outcome came down to the end, with the Patriots staking claim to a 40-36 lead going into the final bout at 112 pounds.
Severna Park's Mike Smythe put Tim Lobuglio on his back with eight seconds left. He was awarded two back points to take an 18-4 major decision for the four points and the tie.
"[Smythe] was one point away from a tech fall. Another second or two and he may have gotten that third back point to get it," said Old Mill coach Jim Grim. "It was an intense match, back and forth. We got on them early and that ignited our fans, and then they came back on us and their fans got into it."
As for the streak ending?
"We don't really pay attention to that kind of stuff. Our goal is to get ready for the county, region and state tournaments," Grim said.
With Old Mill now 7-0-1 in the county, defending Class 4A-3A state champion Chesapeake is the only team left undefeated in the county at 8-0. The teams will meet Feb. 7.
Waters lends hand
The Severna Park girls basketball team got good news with the return of senior forward Julia Waters, who was out more than a month with mononucleosis.
Waters scored 12 points and grabbed seven rebounds in the No. 6 Falcons' 71-16 rout of Northeast on Friday.
The Falcons (13-3 overall, 9-1 county) had done well with Waters out of the lineup until Wednesday, when they ran into No. 10 Arundel. The Wildcats (13-3, 9-1) pulled away in the fourth quarter for a 64-50 victory that represented the Falcons' first county loss.
All 20 of the Wildcats' fourth-quarter points came from work inside - nine field goals and two free throws that completed three-point plays.
No. 12 Chesapeake stayed close Friday with a 53-44 win over No. 18 Annapolis. The Cougars, who got a game-high 18 points from senior center Ginger Williams, improved to 12-3, 8-2 in the county.
Littlejohn in a hurry
Anthony Littlejohn may not have had the top performance in the Anne Arundel indoor track and field championships Friday night - that honor belonged to Southern senior Andrew Peresta, who set one county record and contributed to another. But Littlejohn certainly produced one of the most exciting.
The Old Mill junior brought the crowd at the Prince George's Sports & Learning Complex in Landover to its feet when he sprinted past Annapolis sophomore Will Eden and Broadneck junior Andrew Younger in the last 200 meters to win the 1,600 in 4 minutes, 30.2 seconds.
When the bell sounded to signal the final lap, Littlejohn was third behind front-runner Eden and Younger. But Littlejohn - who also won the 800 - turned on the juice, eventually beating Younger, who finished second, by 1.3 seconds.
"In any race I run, the last lap is a new race for me," Littlejohn said. "They're more distance runners. I've got a sprinter's kick. With my kick, I wasn't worried about catching them."
Several other athletes turned in season-best efforts. Severna Park senior Brian Grubel improved on a personal-best 13 feet, 6 inches he recorded in the pole vault two weeks ago by clearing 14-0 Friday.
Chesapeake senior Steven Schanken threw the shot 44-3, which was 5 1/2 inches beyond his previous best.
Other county titlists included North County junior Will Brown in the 55 (6.4 seconds), Northeast senior Ryan Williams in the 3,200 (9:51.5) and Meade senior Eugene Perry in the 55 hurdles (7.6).
On the girls side, Glen Burnie senior Danielle Robinson posted a personal record when she claimed the 55 in 7.3. She also teamed with junior Sheila Isong, sophomore Deeannah Taylor and freshman Victoria Zielienki to collect a victory in the 800 relay (1:53.9).
Annapolis senior Calynn Offer and Chesapeake senior Brittany Frye continued their winning streaks over county opponents in the pole vault and high jump, respectively. Offer cleared 9-0 in the pole vault while Frye registered a high jump of 5-0.
Joining them as county champions were Broadneck sophomore Emily Nagle in the 3,200 (11:49.5), Meade senior Brittany Griffin in the 55 hurdles (8.7 seconds) and North County senior Emily Deinlein in the shot put (31-4 1/2 ).
Reiter to step down
After his first full year at the helm, Joe Reiter said this week that he plans to step down as athletic director at Liberty following this season.
Reiter, also a vice principal at Liberty, will relinquish that job as well, choosing to resume his career as a full-time teacher.
Staff reports contributed to this article.