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‘Outstanding’ wrestler Harris rises to occasion for Northwest Jags at Rockville Duals

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Northwest Jaguars’ Yonas Harris won the 106 lb. weight class at the Rockville Rumble Duals, and recognized as the tournament’s “Outstanding Wrestler,” while the Jaguars won the Second Place Team Trophy. PHOTO BY GEORGE P. SMITHNorthwest's Yonas Harris won the 106 lb. weight class at the Rockville Rumble Duals, and recognized as the tournament’s “Outstanding Wrestler,” while the Jaguars won the Second Place Team Trophy.   PHOTO BY GEORGE P. SMITHNorthwest Jaguars’ senior Yonas Harris turned in his best performance of the season Saturday in the Rockville Rumble Duals Wrestling Tournament.

The returning county and regional champion’s 9-0 mark included winning a clash between Montgomery County’s premier 106-pounders, 6-2, over previously unbeaten senior Brian Trinh of Paint Branch, and scoring a major decision over the host school’s 120-pounder.

“Other than Trinh, the rest of my matches were either pins or technical falls,” said Harris, who improved to 23-0 and was named Outstanding Wrestler. “This season has started out really well for me, and I’m really excited for it.”

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Smith, Fuondjing help Paint Branch Panthers pin down Rockville Duals crown

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Paint Branch High School's Austin Smith, winner of the 195 lb bracket, is surrounded by teammates as he holds the 1st Place Team trophy at the Rockville Rumble Duals Wrestling Tournament.  PHOTO BY GEORGE P. SMITH Paint Branch's Austin Smith, winner of the 195 lb bracket, is surrounded by his teammates as he holds the First Place Team trophy at the Rockville Rumble Duals Wrestling Tournament. PHOTO BY GEORGE P. SMITH  Juniors Austin Smith (195) and Wafeu Fuondjing (285) won all nine bouts Saturday to pace the Paint Branch Panthers past runner-up Northwest, 31-27, for the title of the Rockville Rumble Duals Wrestling Tournament. 

Smith rose to 20-0, and Fuondjing to 19-1. Smith’s biggest win of the year is a 4-3 decision over Good Counsel transfer Drew Brenowitz of Clarksburg, a sixth place private schools finisher last year.

“Brenowitz was a tough match that will help me to get into the right mindset after not having too many tough matches so far,” said Smith, son of Paint Branch wrestling coach Rick Smith. “I missed counties and regions last year with a back injury, so I’m feeling ready to finish strong over the rest of our tough schedule.”

Also wrestling well for the Panthers (15-5) were Brian Trinh (106), Amir Abdur Rahim (138), Dheduce Anumgba (160), Kyle Isolato (170), Tom Bettinger (182) and Wisdom Agbeyome (220). Trinh is 19-1, Bettinger is 17-2, Anumgba is 12-2, Isolato is 15-5, Agbeyome is 6-2, and Rahim, 12-6.

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Ryan Lawrence leads Damascus to state title

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When Ryan Lawrence entered The Show Place Arena for the March 3-4 Class 4A-3A state tournament, the 145-pound Damascus junior had a lot on his mind.

It had been a year since Lawrence was forced to settle for a third-place finish at states after having, in his words, been “20 seconds” from reaching the finals “and then getting pinned.”

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JDS easily wins PVAC as Knapp pumps in 40

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ROCKVILLE – Bryan Knapp went out with a bang.

The Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School senior scored a career-high 40 points in his final high school game to lead the Lions to a 76-65 victory over Sandy Spring Friends School in the Potomac Valley Athletic Conference tournament championship game on Saturday night at Wootton High School.

“Bryan Knapp is one of the best players in the whole area, and he deserves it,” said Jewish Day School head coach David McCloud.

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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.

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Welch scores overtime takedown in tourney

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Andrew Welch of the Churchill Bulldogs scored an overtime takedown for a 3-1 decision to win the 170-pound title in the finals of the January 6-7 Joe Verciglio Memorial Wrestling Tournament at Chantilly High in Chantilly, Virginia.

“I had to really work hard for that last match,” said Welch, who reached the championship bout on three pins, one of which took only 24 seconds, as well as a 9-3 decision before beating Bailey Eichelberger of James Wood High, who has a record of 19-3. “I shot for a high-crotch, which I had done a couple of times earlier in the match, but this time, I took his head to the match and finished on top, and that won it.”

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Whitman’s Iglesias wins Springbrook, Prep’s Krause third at Council Rock

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John Luke Iglesias wasn’t exactly a star as a sophomore last year, although he did win 28 matches as a sophomore at Walt Whitman.

The Vikings’ wrestler got off to a good start at 195 pounds, but it was the finish that left him with a sour taste.

Iglesias went 2-2 at the county tournament, winning by first-round 7-5 decision and by forfeit in the consolation round but being pinned in each of his losses. He qualified for the Class 4A-3A regionals, but went 0-2 there.

“I didn’t finish well in the tournaments last year,” said Iglesias, now a junior. “So I talked to coach [Derek Manon] and told him I would be cleaning up my wrestling moves and being a better wrestler."

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Gonzaga Football Wins Battle On The Beltway Tournament

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Passing League 1Paint Branch's Zavier Williams leaps to catch an incoming pass in the Battle On The Beltway 7 on 7 Tournament. PHOTO BY MARK POETKER

SILVER SPRING – On June 4, Montgomery Blair High School hosted a passing league tournament called the “Battle On The Beltway 7 on 7 Tournament.” 

It was a football tournament that featured 24 teams and 21 schools. Some schools had more than one team playing. The tournament was an all-day event and elimination games were in the afternoon. 

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County fares well in state tennis tournament

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DSC 8248Girls doubles champions Carina Greenberg and Sarina Wahl of Whitman High School. PHOTO BY JACQUI SOUTH

OLNEY – Students from Montgomery County came away with multiple state champion medals in both singles and doubles play during the high school state championship held at Olney Manor Park Friday and Saturday.

Wootton junior Miranda Deng won her third straight state title Saturday (6-0, 6-3) when she went head-to-head with Sherwood senior and University of Richmond commit Lea Owens. Owens and Deng also play together as doubles partners.

Owens’ matchup against Deng marked her first appearance in the state finals.

“It felt good to get this far,” said Owens. “This tournament was just so tiring because of the heat.”

“I thought it was tougher than last year,” said Deng of her road to the finals. “I thought the competition has gotten harder and there were a lot of good matchups along the way.”

Wootton also took home the boys singles title as top-seeded sophomore Joseph Brailovsky earned a 6-2, 3-6, 7-5 victory against third seed Austin Yannone from Severna Park.

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