It is always good to head into winter break with a chip on your shoulder, and that’s what the No. 18 Harford Tech Cobras did with their Thursday night win over No. 19 Hereford, 39-32.

The Cobras were happy with their upper weights yet again, Thursday, as the group pulled together for five consecutive wins between 160 and 285, with Jamie Rappazzo (160), George Majchrzak (189) and Mike Vega (215) pinning the way to a 30-8 Harford Tech lead.

“We have a strong part of our lineup and a weak part of our lineup, and our upper weights are generally pretty strong there,” Rappazzo said.  “If we win, we have a pretty good shot of winning and just have to save it with the lightweights.”

Dillon Brush (171) and Will Hughes (285) added decisions to Joe Malanga’s match-opening pin at 140 in the lead build up, and the bonus points would prove to be useful later in the night.

Hereford’s lightweights did some damage to the Cobra lead, cutting it to just 10 points, 30-20, with consecutive falls between Anthony Genco and Nathan Gregory at 103 and 112, adding to the earlier major decisions of Adam Taylor and Teddy Dimeris at 145 and 152, respectively.

“It was very important to get the first win,” Malanga said.  “I have started off the season a few times with the first match and it has been a good roller.  It gets the team started with some extra points on the board.”

Cobra teammates Bret Blevins (119) and Brandon Hoch (125) halted the Hereford comeback with a decision and fall nearing the end of the night, making the pins of  Joe Ramsel and Matt Swiger to close the match fall short of the Harford Tech team score.

“They couldn’t give up the six points and had to get the six points when they could.  We stayed off our back in certain weightclasses we weren’t going to win,” Harford Tech coach Gary Siler said of his wrestlers.  “We knew we had a good chance to win this match tonight, and we did.”

GeorgeHarford Tech has dealt with an array of injuries and illnesses in the beginning parts of its 2010-2011 season, forcing wrestlers to bump around weight classes for the better of the team, as seen by the normally 160-pound Majchrzack wrestling Thursday’s 189-pound bout.

In the match, Majchrzack was thrown with a headlock, and rather than the typical role-through a wrestler can perform using their opponent’s momentum, he hip-heisted through his role and ended the match with a half nelson in an incredibly athletic performance.

“It was definitely unorthodox,” Majchrzack recalled after the meet.  “He was strong, and I tried rolling through and punching the arm through and locking up the half; Mr. Siler’s move.  I’m just doing anything to raise the team’s chances of winning.”

And the Cobras got the win, sending them into the winter break to heal and, what Siler hopes, emerges as a team to beat in 2011.

“Everyone has a spot on the team, and if they can make that weight, I think we can be pretty much untouchable the rest of the way through,” Siler said.  “Certain people need to hit those certain weights, and we are going to be a team to be reckoned with.”

No. 18 Harford Tech 39, No. Hereford 32

140- Joe Malanga (HT) fall 4:37 Jimmy Wenzel (HER) [0-6]
145- Adam Taylor (HER) maj dec 11-3 Tim Torre (HT) [4-6]
152- Teddy Dimeris (HER) maj dec 13-2 Colin Riley (HT) [8-6]
160- Jamie Rappazzo (HT) fall 2:30 Sam Kubale (HER) [8-12]
171- Dillon Brush (HT) dec 9-3 Rich Lee (HER) [8-15]
189- George Majchrzak (HT) fall :28 Bristol (HER) [8-21]
215- Mike Vega (HT) fall 1:26 Puslowskie (HER) [8-27]
285- Will Hughes (HT) dec 8-4 Timmy Bari (HER) [8-30]
103- Anthony Genco (HER) fall 1:51 Nathan Haskell (HT) [14-30]
112- Nathan Gregory (HER) fall 2:47 Tyler Fulum (HT) [20-30]
119- Bret Blevins (HT) dec 9-5 Paton (HER) [20-33]
125- Brandon Hoch (HT) fall 2:31 Kevin Wheeler (HER) [20-39]
130- Joe Ramsel (HER) fall 2:58 Chase George (HT) [26-39]
135- Matt Swiger (HER) fall 1:22 James Cosgrove (HT) [32-39]