The Damascus wrestling program is on quite a roll these days. Earlier this year they captured their fifth straight 4A/3A state dual meet championship. On Saturday at the Show Place Arena in Upper Marlboro, they secured their third consecutive state tournament championship.

“Oh my gosh, this one feels really really good,” Damascus coach John Furgeson remarked. “It’s a great accomplishment. We had high hopes for the season, a couple things didn’t go our way. We had a couple injuries and people making different decisions to do different things. But, we were able to put it together. We won the state title in football, so it was slow getting our feet moving, but once we did we were able to put it all together. And then my kids starting to be involved in it, so it was extra special.

“To see Scotty (Obendorfer) go out on top. He’s been a four year, awesome wrestler, and ended his high school career on top and to go to Penn State next year it’s special. And to have my kids, both of them at the state tournament this year. My son getting third place was a very big accomplishment for me personally. As far as the team goes, we almost had everybody win their last match, but one. But he won big matches to get him in the placement round and that helped secure our victory.”

Obendorfer (132) defeated Walter Johnson’s JD FitzPatrick, 5-4, to win his second title. Obendorfer beat FitzPatrick during the season and in the county finals, but FitzPatrick came out ahead in the region final. The senior won a title as a sophomore, then finished second last year.

At, 145 Ryan Lawrence dominated Old Mill’s Chase Pennell to the tune of a 21-5 technical-fall. Paul Purkey (182) did what he specializes in during his finals match, picking up the fall in the second period over Westminster’s Garrett Vandervalk. Purkey, who won a private school state title with Good Counsel last season, pinned three of his four opponents.

Johnny McLaughin (120) and John Allan Furgeson (152) were third for the Swarmin’ Hornets. Josh Creegan was sixth at 138lbs.

In the most exciting bout of the final round in either division, Linganore’s Earl Blake (126) pulled of a monumental upset over North Hagerstown’s two-time defending state champion Brian Stuart, 10-9 in overtime. Blake was down 8-4 late in the match, but battled back with two late takedowns to even the score at nine all. The crowd erupted when Blake pulled within one, and subsequently tied it up. The roof seemed like it was going to blow off the building when Blake was able to secure the victory in the second set of overtime periods. Going into the match, Blake was 0-3 versus Stuart in his career, including a 15-6 loss in last week’s regional final.

“God has my back the entire way,” Blake continued. “He has my back no matter what, it’s on him, it’s on him, that was heart, but that was all him. (During the match, I thought) I gotta push the pace and believe that I can win, and it worked, I came through. I wouldn’t say he broke, he kept going, he’s a great wrestler. I just feel that I had more heart and that’s what brought me through. I thought it was great. I thought I could have done a little better on my feet, he got a couple of good shots in. He’s a lot stronger than me, it was a good match. (I feel) pride, but overall, I enjoy that I could have this opportunity and be able flourish in it.”

Anne Arundel County had two champions, Arundel’s Nathan Gainey (120) and South River’s Brendan Woody (285). Gainey edged Winston Churchill’s Lucas Young, 2-1, for his second straight title.

“It feels amazing,” said Gainey. “I worked so hard last year to get there. It felt great coming off that win. With this one, there’s no feeling like it. My mindset for this match was to go all out. Take whatever I got. This was my last high school match so I just wanted to take it all out there, and prove that I’ve worked the hardest to get to where I am.”

Woody survived a close bout of his own with Woodlawn’s towering Alon Hough, 2-1.

“Starting out my freshman year I didn’t even know what a takedown was coming into this sport,” Woody said. “To be at the top of the summit feels great. I tried to minimize pressure as much as possible. It was my senior year so I wanted to go out there and have fun.”

Woody’s teammate, Zach Osborne, was third at 220lbs. Also at 220, Meade’s Chris Bonilla-Arocho placed fifth. Old Mill’s Pennell was second at 145.

Bel Air’s Brent Lorin (113) won his second title, 3-2, over Parkdale’s Axel Giron. The sophomore finished the season 46-0 to run his two-year record to 90-0.

“I was expecting a good match, but I wasn’t expecting something that close,” Lorin added. “Maybe that goes to show the technique, and hard work Axel has been putting in, and that’s why it was such a great match. And because of that, it was one of my favorite matches. I think I did extremely well. There’s stuff to work on for next year though. (It’s) the best feeling in the world. It’s a major accomplishment. Not many people get to do it and I’m just glad I had the team to back me through it the whole way.”

Scott Miser (152) was fourth and Tom Gomez was fifth at 182 for the Bobcats. C. Milton Wright’s Wyatt Graham was second at 195. Edgewood’s Ariq Nixon landed in sixth place at 152.

Centennial’s Jason Kraisser (138) was Howard County’s lone titlist. The sophomore is now two-for-two on state tournament title tries, and is on pace to join brother Nathan as a four-time champion. He used a 4-2 decision over Urbana’s Logan Arneson to secure this year’s crown.

“It feels pretty good, coming out and seeing some of the hard work I put in the room and outside of the room pay off,” said Kraisser. “I knew I had done it before (won states) and I could do it again, every year is going to be hard, but if I go in and trust my ability, and trust my hard work I think everything will just pay off.  I felt, ya know, 4-2 that’s a good match, maybe could have wrestled a little better, but it was a really good match, gotta give a lot of credit to my opponent who wrestled real well the whole time, just a great wrestling match.”

Glenelg saw four wrestlers bring home hardware, Jared Thomas (3rd at 126), Max Sotka (2nd at 160), Garrett Murray (3rd at 170), and Sam Alsheimer (182, 4th). Mt. Hebron placed two grapplers, Yahir Lemus was sixth at 120 and Nick Nordhausen was fourth at 220. Reservoir’s Tyler Ecker was fifth at heavyweight.

Baltimore County saw two guys reach the finals, but neither was able to bring home a championship. Woodlawn’s Hough and Dulaney’s Tyler Woodard (220) had to settle for second.

Franklin had two placers, Phil Smith (106, 3rd) and Elijah Solomon (6th at 195). Patapsco’s Cameron Nelson placed fifth at 160lbs.

Carroll County, like Baltimore County, was unable to secure any titles, but Westminster placed two guys in the tournament, Vandervalk (2nd at 182) and Brad Walsh (5th at 138). Zach McAleer (Manchester Valley) was sixth at 132.

Oakdale had two champions, both first-timers, Logan McKoy (170) and Bryce DeMaille (220). McKoy came in as a two-time runner-up.

North Hagerstown’s Aaron Brooks (160) pinned all four of his opponents, picking up the fall for his third championship at the 2:45 mark of the second period of his finals match against Glenelg’s Sotka. Brooks, who won both Freestyle and Greco Roman Cadet titles at Fargo last summer, was 47-0 this season.

“It feels good (to pin through the tournament), ya know, that’s what we work for, stuff like that, to dominate like that,” Brooks added. “I’ve always liked the extra push in practice, and when you get tired, keep pushing, so when you’re in the match looking for the pin you can get that extra push, it pays off. It (the third title) means one more step down, one more step knocked off, one more to go. I feel like it was expected (the third title), you know, coming in and them hearing about all my success already coming up to this. I feel like it (the dominating performance) was kind of expected, but it probably did send a little statement, if it did that’s good and if it didn’t that’s alright.”

Winning their first state titles were, Leonardtown’s Sean Vosburgh (106), Urbana’s Jake Nielson (152), and Huntingtown’s Gino Sita (195).

Team Scores (top 15):

1. Damascus


2. Urbana


3. Huntingtown


3. Oakdale


5. North Hagerstown


6. Leonardtown


7. Glenelg


8. Parkdale


9. Bel Air


10. South River


11. Churchill


12. Stephen Decatur


13. Walter Johnson


14. Linganore


15. Centennial



4A/3A – 106 Results
1st Place Match
Sean Vosburgh (Leonardtown) 39-2, Fr. over Kidus Gebriorgis (Parkdale) 33-2, Sr. (Dec 13-7).
3rd Place Match
Phil Smith (Franklin) 43-1, Fr. over MaMadou Diallo (DuVal) 26-4, Jr. (Fall 3:35).
5th Place Match
Blake Jury (Huntingtown) 38-13, Fr. over Alex Carbonell (Poolesville) 46-7, So. (Dec 8-4).

1134A/3A – 113 Results
1st Place Match
Brent Lorin (Bel Air) 46-0, So. over Axel Giron (Parkdale) 31-2, So. (Dec 3-2).
3rd Place Match
CJ Cramma (Magruder) 41-6, Jr. over Kemper Stearns (Walter Johnson) 36-11, Jr. (Dec 9-5).
5th Place Match
Robert Kaminski (Stephen Decatur) 39-6, Sr. over Patrick Hughes (J. M. Bennett) 38-8, So. (Fall 0:39).



1204A/3A – 120 Results
1st Place Match
Nathan Gainey (Arundel) 36-4, Sr. over Lucas Young (Churchill) 41-6, Sr. (Dec 2-1).
3rd Place Match
Johnny McLaughlin (Damascus) 46-4, So. over Ryan Crosby (Clarksburg) 40-9, Sr. (Dec 3-1).
5th Place Match
Cody Swigart (Urbana) 32-10, Jr. over Yahir Lemus (Mt. Hebron) 34-14, Jr. (Dec 2-0).



1264A/3A – 126 Results
1st Place Match
Earl Blake (Linganore) 35-3, So. over Brian Stuart (North Hagerstown) 44-1, Jr. (TB-1 10-9).
3rd Place Match
Jared Thomas (Glenelg) 44-2, So. over Wyatt McKoy (Oakdale) 37-7, So. (MD 11-0).
5th Place Match
Colin Savage (Poolesville) 44-6, Fr. over Jack Connolly (Churchill) 44-5, Jr. (TB-1 8-7).


4A/3A – 132 Results
1st Place Match
Scott Obendorfer (Damascus) 47-1, Sr. over JD FitzPatrick (Walter Johnson) 40-4, Sr. (Dec 5-4).
3rd Place Match
Alejandro Lopez (Quince Orchard) 39-8, Jr. over Isaiah Edmond (North Point) 38-7, Jr. (TB-1 5-2).
5th Place Match
Isaiah Williams (Parkdale) 34-5, Sr. over Zach McAleer (Manchester Valley) 37-8, Sr. (MD 11-2).

1384A/3A – 138 Results
1st Place Match
Jason Kraisser (Centennial) 40-1, So. over Logan Arneson (Urbana) 35-7, Sr. (Dec 4-2).
3rd Place Match
Nick Gonzalez (Clarksburg) 42-4, Jr. over Ryan Holland (Montgomery Blair) 36-10, Jr. (MD 11-0).
5th Place Match
Brad Walsh (Westminster) 43-8, Jr. over Josh Creegan (Damascus) 22-7, Jr. (Dec 7-0).

4A/3A – 145 Results
1st Place Match
Ryan Lawrence (Damascus) 48-1, Jr. over Chase Pennell (Old Mill) 41-3, Sr. (TF-1.5 5:47 (21-5)).
3rd Place Match
Andy Mckahan (Stephen Decatur) 42-2, Sr. over Shane Acton (Urbana) 30-9, Jr. (UTB 4-2).
5th Place Match
Nolan Smith (Paint Branch) 40-5, Sr. over Tony Sita (Huntingtown) 39-10, Sr. (Dec 4-1).

4A/3A – 152 Results
1st Place Match
Jake Nielson (Urbana) 35-4, Jr. over Chase De Maille (Oakdale) 39-4, Sr. (Dec 3-1).
3rd Place Match
John Allan Furgeson (Damascus) 42-9, Jr. over Scott Miser (Bel Air) 48-4, Sr. (Dec 4-2).
5th Place Match
John Podsednik (Leonardtown) 29-3, So. over Ariq Nixon (Edgewood) 33-8, Sr. (MD 14-4).

1604A/3A – 160 Results
1st Place Match
Aaron Brooks (North Hagerstown) 47-0, Jr. over Max Sotka (Glenelg) 45-4, Jr. (Fall 2:45).
3rd Place Match
Tristin Breen (Huntingtown) 30-1, Jr. over Jake Makosy (Urbana) 34-7, Sr. (Dec 1-0).
5th Place Match
Cameron Nelson (Patapsco) 36-7, Sr. over Trevor Crowley (Leonardtown) 31-12, So. (Fall 4:20).

4A/3A – 170 Results
1st Place Match
Logan McKoy (Oakdale) 40-1, Sr. over Khalil Owens (Northwest) 31-7, Sr. (Dec 7-2).
3rd Place Match
Garrett Murray (Glenelg) 37-2, Sr. over Kaleb Corbin (North Hagerstown) 36-9, Sr. (Dec 5-1).
5th Place Match
Andrew Welch (Churchill) 43-5, Jr. over Jacob Cramer (Huntingtown) 36-13, Jr. (Dec 9-2).

4A/3A – 182 Results
1st Place Match
Paul Purkey (Damascus) 47-1, Jr. over Garrett Vandervalk (Westminster) 42-7, Sr. (Fall 3:22).
3rd Place Match
Seth Cranford (Northern-C) 37-4, Jr. over Sam Alsheimer (Glenelg) 44-6, So. (Dec 4-3).
5th Place Match
Tom Gomez (Bel Air) 43-7, Sr. over Austin Cole (Charles H. Flowers) 34-5, Sr. (Inj. 0:00).

4A/3A – 195 Results
1st Place Match
Gino Sita (Huntingtown) 45-2, Sr. over Wyatt Graham (C. Milton Wright) 44-1, Jr. (Dec 8-5).
3rd Place Match
Alex Green (Leonardtown) 35-5, Jr. over Kevin Makosy (Urbana) 34-6, So. (Dec 7-3).
5th Place Match
Gabriel McAndrew (Bethesda-CC) 41-7, Jr. over Elijah Solomon (Franklin) 34-8, So. (Dec 3-2).

4A/3A – 220 Results
1st Place Match
Bryce De Maille (Oakdale) 41-1, Jr. over Tyler Woodard (Dulaney) 36-5, Jr. (Fall 4:13).
3rd Place Match
Zach Osborne (South River) 36-12, Sr. over Nick Nordhausen (Mt. Hebron) 39-6, Jr. (UTB 4-2).
5th Place Match
Christopher Bonilla Arocho (Meade) 34-5, Sr. over Jared Burgoyne (Huntingtown) 22-4, Sr. (Fall 4:48).

2854A/3A – 285 Results
1st Place Match
Brendan Woody (South River) 45-1, Sr. over Alon Hough (Woodlawn) 31-5, Sr. (Dec 2-1).
3rd Place Match
Christian Bryant (Eleanor Roosevelt) 29-5, So. over Shawn King-Pombo (South Hagerstown) 40-6, Jr. (Dec 9-3).
5th Place Match
Tyler Ecker (Reservoir) 38-6, Sr. over Ean Spencer (Stephen Decatur) 35-8, Sr. (Dec 4-0).