Damascus handles Glenelg for second straight year, earns sixth straight duals crown

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Damascus Swarmin HornetsGlenelg came up empty for matching its trio of Howard County champions against their Damascus counterparts during Saturday’s Class 2A state duals at North Point High in Charles County, a factor critical to a definitive 49-16 victory for the Swarmin’ Hornets.

Senior John Allan Furgeson (160), sophomore Tim Furgeson (170) and senior Ben Lokos (182), all county champions, ground out tough decisions over state runner-up Max Sotka, Jacob Jones and fourth-place state finisher Sam Alsheimer as the Swarmin’ Hornets completed their second consecutive 25-0 dual meet season with their 152nd win in a row and their program’s unprecedented sixth straight state duals championship.

“We definitely knew the strength in their lineup was right there,” said Lokos, who missed all of last year due to a knee injury but won a county championship as a sophomore before finishing third at regions and states.

“It was really great seeing John Allan win. Then, to see Timmy beat his guy really pumped me up. After I won, we knew it was over and they were demoralized. That was the nail was in the coffin, so to speak.”


Damascus gains redemption and third state title

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Damascus completed a weekend of redemption during the March 3-4 Class 4A-3A state tournament at The Show Place Arena, where three of its six state place winners overcame setbacks from a week earlier to lead the Swarmin’ Hornets to their third straight and sixth overall state title in Upper Marlboro of Prince George’s County.

Led by Penn State-bound senior Scottie Obendorfer (132), who avenged an earlier loss to win his second crown in three years, the Swarmin’ Hornets (123.5 points) overcame runner-up Urbana (99 points) of Frederick County.

A state champion as a sophomore who was runner-up last year, Obendorfer had lost his regional title bout, 6-1, to Walter Johnson’s J.D. FitzPatrick after having beaten him in both the county finals and an earlier dual meet. On Saturday, however, Obendorfer won, 5-4, after having reached the finals on a technical fall and two decisions.

“I believed God had a plan for Scottie, an that losing the regional final was a great lesson for him not to take anything for granted. Of course there is disappointment,” said coach John Furgeson. “But how you respond defines character and the person you become. Scottie was so focused this weekend and ready to wrestle. He zeroed in on what he had to do to overcome that obstacle.”


Obendorfer earns second state title in three years

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Senior Scottie Obendorfer came full-circle from his sophomore season on March 3-4.

His Class 4A-3A state title-winning 5-4 victory at 132 pounds over Walter Johnson’s JD FitzPatrick not only avenged a regional championship loss from a week earlier but also earned his second crown by the same score he won by two years ago at 120 pounds.

Eight days after falling, 6-1, to FitzPatrick in their Class 4A-3A West Region final at Sherwood, the Penn State-bound Obendorfer won when it counted most, leading the Swarmin’ Hornets (123.5 points ) to their third straight and sixth overall state tournament title at Show Place Arena in Upper Marlboro of Prince George’s County.

“Scottie is such a class kid,” said Damascus head coach John Furgeson of Obendorfer, who had vanquished FitzPatrick, 8-4, in an earlier dual meet, and, 7-5, in the county finals. “He’s going to do great things because of the man he’s become at Damascus through the sport of wrestling.”


FitzPatrick dethrones Obendorfer one week after losing county match

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Walter Johnson senior J.D. FitzPatrick found the third time to be the charm against senior Scottie Obendorfer of Damascus, whom he dethroned 6-1 in last Saturday’s 132-pound Class 4A-3A West Region title match at Sherwood.

FitzPatrick led 1-0 entering third period after a scoreless first and a second-period escape, broke a 1-1 tie on a final seconds takedown and three nearfall points and gave the Penn State-bound Obendorfer (43-1) his first loss in advance of Friday and Saturday’s Class 4A-3A state tournament at The Showplace Arena in Upper Marlboro.

“Obendorfer’s really strong, really good and brings good intensity,” said FitzPatrick, whose father Geary is his coach. “I just had to match it. That was the plan, and I knew I could. I was just focused on scoring, so I just kept on attacking.”


Damascus crowns three and sends 11 to states

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Damascus crowned three champions and qualified 11 wrestlers for Friday and Saturday’s Class 4A-3A state tournament, winning last Saturday’s Class 4A-3A West Regional Tournament at Sherwood during an event that featured several upsets for and against the Swarmin’ Hornets among other surprises.

The Swarmin’ Hornets received titles from sophomore Johnny McLaughlin (120) and county champion juniors Ryan Lawrence (145) and Paul Purkey (182), with runners-up in the county champion Furgeson siblings, junior John Allan (152) and freshman Tim (160), as well as Penn State-bound senior four-time county titlist Scottie Obendorfer (132) and county runners-up Elijah Baisden (195) and Mike Bradshaw (220), a sophomore and senior.


Damascus’ Lawrence and Obendorfer win War on the Shore

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BERLIN – Damascus junior Ryan Lawrence entered his 145-pound champion bout against host Stephen Decatur’s Andy McKahan as if he had a score to settle, despite having vanquished the senior in the previous year’s title match of the same War on the Shore tournament.

Lawrence led last year’s 138-pound final, 3-2, against McKahan, then a returning fourth-place Class 4A-3A state finisher, before winning by default due to McKahan’s inability to stop the blood flow from his nose.

But at last year’s states, McKahan and Lawrence finished second and third, respectively, at 132 pounds after Lawrence lost his semifinal by pin with one second left in his match against Centennial’s Justin Kraisser after holding a 3-2 lead. McKahan lost, 8-3, to Kraisser in the final.

“Even though I beat him last year, he got seeded over me for his home tournament,” said Lawrence, a junior. “It’s probably because of what happened at states and because I was only up by a point when they stopped our match at War on the Shore last year. So this was redemption, and it was great to get it again at his home school.”


Macklin helps lead Damascus to 115th straight dual win

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Damascus vs. Poolesville WrestlingT.J. Macklin wins in overtime against Brian Truppo. PHOTO BY DAVID WOLFE  

T.J. Macklin’s overtime takedown won a clash of 120-pound seniors, 3-1, over Poolesville’s Brian Truppo on Saturday as Damascus won its 114th and 115th straight dual meet matches over the host Falcons and Richard Montgomery.

A third-year starter who improved to 19-2 on the year, Macklin has returned to the weight class where he placed fourth in last year’s county and regional tournaments after having been runner-up in both as a 106- pound sophomore.

“You feel a little more pressure because we know that our team has a big target on our backs,” said Macklin, part of a program in pursuit of its third straight and sixth overall Class 4A-3A state tournament crown, an unprecedented sixth straight state dual meet championship and their 15th county tournament title.


Swarmin' Hornets continue to dominate in wrestling duals

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Damascus junior Ryan Lawrence and his teammates felt the stares as they entered the venue at LaPlata High in Charles County for last weekend’s Warriors’ Duals. 

It’s a look Lawrence expects to experience throughout the season as his Swarmin’ Hornets pursue their third straight and sixth overall Class 4A-3A state tournament crown, an unprecedented sixth straight state dual meet championship and their 15th county tournament title.

“Yeah, we feel like everyone is watching us,” said Lawrence, a 152-pound returning county and regional champion who finished third at states last season. “They’re hoping that we mess up and lose, but we embrace that as motivation to keep on winning.”


Damascus picks up wrestler from Falcons

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Junior Paul Purkey, winner of a 182-pound private schools state title at Good Counsel last season, transferred to Damascus and will compete for the Swarmin’ Hornets starting Dec. 10.

One of the title-winning Falcons’ six state champions and the only non-senior to reach the finals, Purkey overcame three upperclassmen, including a senior who had beaten him three times during his ninth-grade year, on the way to earning Outstanding Wrestler honors at states. 

“I’m excited to start my first wrestling season with Damascus High School,” said Purkey. “It’s going to be great to be a part of this program, have some fun wrestling and working hard with my friends.”

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