Mack Lewnes had hoped for more aggressiveness from St. Mark's Kyle Skinner; in the back of his mind, the Mount St. Joseph sophomore feared the defending Delaware state champ would be conservative.
"His game plan was to keep it close," said Lewnes, who, nevertheless earned a 1-0 decision - his second by a point over Skinner - for the 152-pound crown in last night's Mount Mat Madness Tournament at Goucher College Sports Center.
"He never out-positioned me. I never felt like I lost control. I wanted to score more, but he's probably happy."
Lewnes (27-2, 18 pins), ranked No. 2 in the country at 152, was joined on the victory podium by Andrew Gold (112) as No. 1 Mount St. Joseph (230.5 points) defeated St. Mark's (182.5) for the title in the 21-team event before more than 1,000 fans.
Gold (16-2) scored two pins and a technical fall before grinding out an 8-0 shutout of Harford Tech's unranked Mike Long (12-2), whose second-period lateral drop secured a 5-1 semifinal upset of St. Mark's Jeremy Shaw, Delaware's third-place state finisher.
Finishing second for the Gaels were David Dulski (135, 16-6) and Kevin O'Connor (189). Greg Gold (103) and Bruce Dulski (119) got thirds and Alex Ward (130) and Jake Bohn (145) fourths.
No. 2 Owings Mills (163.5, fourth) crowned No. 2-ranked wrestlers Alex Binder (140, 17-0) and Eric Fishel (171, 18-0). Binder, who dominated Robinson's Matt Jones, 14-3, in the final, had a tougher time in his semifinal, defeating Harford Tech's Brad Dreyer (16-1) by 2-1. They could meet three more times this year.
"[Dreyer] was a little better than the guy I had in the finals, but I wrestled conservatively against [Dreyer] since my assignment was just to win," Binder said. "In the finals, I put it all out there. I'm going to see [Dreyer] again, so this doesn't mean much."
Fishel pinned his 10th, 11th and 12th opponents of the year, shut out a fourth, 13-0, and somersaulted to counter a takedown for one of his own with 1:30 left to defeat Delaware state runner-up Andrew Jordan of St. Mark's, 5-4.
"He went inside single and I whizzered down, but I don't know what the roll was," said Fishel, a third-place state finisher last season. "I was able to ride him, but he was real tough on bottom. This is one of the best wrestlers that I've ever beaten."
Chesapeake-AA's No. 1-ranked Corey Bowers (119, 14-0) scored two technical falls and a semifinal, 7-2 decision over private schools champ Bruce Dulski of Mount St. Joseph before nailing Owings' Mills' No. 2-ranked Rob Cooper (16-2) to the mat in only 27 seconds.
A 4A-3A state runner-up, Bowers has handed Cooper each of his three career losses, having pinned him twice and defeated him, 3-1, on Dec. 31. This time, Bowers scored a takedown for a 2-0 lead, let Cooper up, then used an ankle-pick to an over-and-under to finish him off.
"I hit that knee-pick and wanted it so bad. I saw the opportunity for the cement job and took it," said Bowers, who earned Outstanding Wrestler honors.
Including wins over graduated Jimmy Van Daniker (Perry Hall) and Trent Dixon (Eastern Tech), Bowers has beaten three state champs. "You bet that bothers me" that he hasn't won a state title, said Bowers, who has finished second once in states and third twice. "But I'm going to get mine this year."