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Region champs Welch, Velikanov among eight Churchill grapplers bound for Class 4A-3A states

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Churchill's Andrew Welch racks up an 11-4 win over Whitman's Yussef Zaki in the 195lb weight class. PHOTO BY MIKE CLARKChurchill's Andrew Welch racks up an 11-4 win over Whitman's Yussef Zaki in the 195lb weight class. PHOTO BY MIKE CLARK  CLARKSBURG — Senior champion Andrew Welch (195) and junior Alec Velikanov (285) are among eight wrestlers of the Churchill Bulldogs who placed fourth or higher at the Feb. 23 and 24 Class 4A-3A West Regionals at Clarksburg, thereby qualifying for this weekend’s Class 4A-3A state tournament at The Showplace Arena in Upper Marlboro.

Finishing third were Churchill seniors Jack Connolly (138), Sean Mahan (145) and Elijah Zack (152), with seniors Chris Ervin (120) and Mac Ballman (170) and junior Carlos Villamar (132) all being fourth.

Winning titles for the Northwest Jaguars were seniors Yonas Harris (106) and Luke Patterson (170), with sophomore Siavash Sarvestani (113) being second, and junior Jack Thomas (195), third.

Clarksburg, Magruder, Quince Orchard and Whitman all placed three wrestlers within the top four, with two each doing so for Bethesda-Chevy Chase and Walter Johnson, and one apiece for Einstein, Gaithersburg and Wootton.

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Paint Branch Panthers trounce Clarksburg in girls hoops, 74-32

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Paint Branch's Katerra Myers splits between Clarksburg players to put one over the rim for two points. PHOTO BY DAVID WOLFE Paint Branch's Katerra Myers goes through Clarksburg defense to put one over the rim for two points. PHOTO BY DAVID WOLFE  BURTONSVILLE — The Paint Branch Panthers varsity girls basketball team took full advantage of the visiting, injury-ridden Clarksburg Coyotes Tuesday to earn a 74-32 running-clock victory in front of their home crowd as the regular season winds down.

The Coyotes have already had to adjust their starting lineup due to senior forward Sunny Paul’s season-ending foot injury. However, recent injuries to center Trinity Klock and forward Aishah Kinney left Clarksburg at an offensive disadvantage.

The first half proved to be a defensive battle as both teams struggled to make shots. The Panthers didn’t gain the upper hand until senior forward Amele Ngwafang found her rhythm and drove down the court again and again, landing easy layups. The Radford University commit registered 17 points in three quarters before sitting out with an apparent injury in the fourth quarter.

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Clarksburg girls hoops team hangs on to beat Wootton 55-50

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Clarksburg's Miki Howson (#10) turns the corner on Wootton's Zoey Goldberg (#5). Clarksburg would go on to win against Wootton 55-50.  PHOTO BY GEORGE P. SMITHClarksburg's Miki Howson (#10) turns the corner on Wootton's Zoey Goldberg (#5). Clarksburg would go on to win against Wootton 55-50.   PHOTO BY GEORGE P. SMITH  ROCKVILLE — When the visiting Clarksburg Lady Coyotes varsity girls basketball team took the court Monday against the Wootton Patriots, one player – senior and key scorer Sunny Paul – was conspicuously absent, remaining on the bench with her leg wrapped in a Clarksburg blue cast, the evidence of a season-ending injury sustained three days ago in a losing effort against Gaithersburg.

Paul’s injury motivated the Coyotes to band together and make a last-minute push to defeat the Patriots 55-50 and improve to 15-2.

“The kids rallied together and played great team basketball,” said Clarksburg head coach Sissy Natoli. “When you have a senior and four-year veteran go down, you don’t know who’s going to step it up. We had a lot of different players step it up. It was nice to see.”

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Sherwood junior defeats Clarksburg senior for impressive victory at Battle of the Brook

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Chris Sanchez of Sherwood takes a 15-8 decision on Clarkburg's Nick Gonzalez for the 138lb weigth class tournament. PHOTO BY MIKE CLARKSherwood's Chris Sanchez takes a 15-8 decision on Clarkburg's Nick Gonzalez for the 138lb weight class tournament. PHOTO BY MIKE CLARK  Chris Sanchez executed a five-point throw to break a 4-all tie and end the first period as the 138-pound Sherwood junior overcame Clarksburg senior Nick Gonzalez for a 15-8 title-winning victory in a marquee bout of the Jan. 12-13 Battle at The Brook tournament at Springbrook.

A DeMatha transfer who was fifth in last year’s private schools' state tournament, Sanchez won a clash between two of Maryland’s top public school wrestlers in only his second tournament of the year over consecutive weekends.

“Getting that move late in the first period was big for creating separation,” said Sanchez, who improved to 6-0 with four pins and a technical fall, pacing the Warriors (180 points) to a runner-up finish behind the host Blue Devils (197.5).

“I wish I could have stuck him, but I really didn’t get the right angle on it. I was able to maintain the right mindset for the rest of the match and take advantage of my opportunities.”

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Wootton Patriots upset Clarksburg Coyotes in boys basketball, 66-62

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Wootton Patriots' Garrett Koch (#1) and RyanWarshaw (#0) converge on Clarksburg Coyotes' Corey Bullington (#1) as he drives the lane during the game at Wootton on Friday.  PHOTO BY GEORGE SMITHWootton Patriots' Garrett Koch (#1) and Ryan Warshaw (#0) converge on Clarksburg Coyotes' Corey Bullington (#1) as he drives the lane during Friday's game at Wootton.                  PHOTO BY GEORGE SMITH  

ROCKVILLE – The basketball gods were smiling at Wootton High School on Friday night.

True Johnson, a talented 6-foot-5 junior shooting guard, led four Wootton players in double figures with 15 points in the Patriots’ 66-62 win over visiting Clarksburg.

Johnson, who spent last season at Bethesda-Chevy Chase, has emerged as one of the county’s top performers this season, scoring double digits in nearly every game.

“This kid’s got potential to play at the next level at a legit school,” said Wootton head coach Erick Graves.

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Clarksburg’s Gonzalez siblings, Nick and Alex, shine on the mats

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Clarksburg’s Nick Gonzalez (138) pinned eight of nine opponents at last week’s South River Duals. The Coyote senior’s lone defeat came by 9-5 decision to McDonogh of Baltimore’s Caden Mareno, a runner-up in last year’s Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association and private schools state tournaments.

That’s an impressive effort for Gonzalez, a returning county and regional champion who was third at states. But when your freshman brother, Alex (106), goes 9-0 and wins Outstanding Wrestler honors in the same tournament to equal your overall record of 16-1, the experience can be humbling.

“Alex pinned four guys and beat a South Carroll wrestler at 113,” said Nick Gonzalez, who pinned all three opponents at last month’s Boonsboro Tournament, earning Outstanding Lower Weight Wrestler honors where Alex finished second.

“Every year in the past I’ve gone 8-1 in South River’s tournament, and in his first year, he wins it. Having the same record as my younger brother is a little funny. But in the end, he’s probably going to wind up being better than me.”

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Montgomery County’s high school wrestling preview

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Colonels’ C.J. Cramma aims for elusive state title, while Damascus goes for another team crown 

Magruder’s C.J. Cramma need no further inspiration than his past two meetings with Parkdale of Prince George’s County’s 4A-3A runner-up Axel Giron, who defeated the Colonels’ wrestler, 6-3, in last year’s 113-pound state semifinals, and, in triple-overtime at a summer wrestling camp at Landon High.

Giron lost his state title bout, 3-2, to repeat winner Brent Lorin of Harford County’s Bel Air, a junior like Giron, who has yet to lose a high school bout.

“We were tied 3-3 at states and Giron got back points,” said Cramma, who went 4-1 at states with two pins, a technical fall and a 9-5 decision to end the year with a mark of 41-6. “At Landon, we were tied 4-4 but went into triple-overtime and I lost on the ultimate ride-out.”

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Magruder boys lacrosse pound Clarksburg 10-3

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201700501 Cburg vs Magrud 130CUT: Long stick man Paolo Nardone of Magruder fires off a down field pass as Clarkburg's Tim Lehr closes in. PHOTO BY DAVID WOLFE

CLARKSBURG-The Magruder Colonels broke through a tough Clarksburg Coyote defense to get a 10-3 win Monday night, ultimately dominating the game with a relentless attack.

But the focal point of the Colonels’ attack was senior midfielder Jimmy Hassemann, who scored six points and led the Colonels to victory. Hassemann played the Coyote’s defense well, looping around the back and confusing the defense to score from very close range.

“I feel we did good on defense. From offense we need to take more shots, we need to pick it up,” said junior Coyotes goalkeeper Bryant Evans.

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Track and field athletes score big in meet

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20170327 Watkins Mill Invitational track-dwolfe 3 of 3Lily Lippert of Clarksburg overtakes Walter Johnson’s relay team to secure second place overall in the relay. PHOTO BY DAVID WOLFE  

Local teams took first and second for the girls and boys sprint medley relays, respectively.

Watkins Mill High School won the girls sprint medley relay with a time of 2:24 minutes.

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Wootton buries Clarksburg in season opener 18-3

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ROCKVILLE – In the season opener for both the Wootton Patriots and the Clarksburg Coyotes girls’ lacrosse team, the Patriots dominated both halves against an inexperienced Coyotes squad to win, 18-3.

It was a stark difference in skill level from start to finish. The Coyotes had an open defense that left room for the Patriots to maneuver into and score. When the Coyotes did get close to goal, the Patriots suffocated them and forced them to play a passing game to make room.

“It wasn’t in our favor. We’re a very, very young team,” said Coyotes’ head coach Denise Miller.

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