In yesterday's highly anticipated matchup between top-ranked River Hill and No. 5 Old Mill, neither team flinched or showed any weaknesses as they traded leads early in the night.
The Patriots, however, showed the type of resilience that will make them one of the Class 4A-3A teams to beat by winning five of the last six matches for a 31-24 victory. Old Mill improved to 13-1 and is developing into the type of team that could challenge for its 11th overall state title.
"It was a great match that went back and forth," said Old Mill coach Dan Youngblood. "We took advantage of some good matchups. Our kids came up big tonight."
Twin brothers Thomas and Michael Sillaman gave the Patriots a 7-0 lead with dominating performances at 160 and 171 pounds, respectively.
The Hawks then got back into the match when Eric Kohr (189) improved to 20-1 this season with a hard-fought 7-3 victory over Tyrone Bryant at 189 and a forfeit at 215. Aaron Hawkins, last year's Anne Arundel County and Class 4A-3A East champion, regained the lead for Old Mill when he secured three late points in a 4-0 victory over Brendan Barnes at 285.
"We finally came together as a team," Hawkins said. "Everyone did their part and we went out there and beat them."
Colin Dupreay overcame a second-period leg injury and gutted out an 8-2 victory over Isa Mohammed at 103 and a 13-9 Old Mill lead. It was Mohammed's second loss of the season.
Scott Mantua answered for River Hill with a first-period pin over Damian Sheldon and a two-point Hawks lead with seven matches to go. Mantua is 23-0 with 15 pins this season.
"It was a very competitive and a good match," River Hill coach Brandon Lauer said.