Hur­ri­canes win some hard­ware

The Calvert Recorder - - Sports - ANDY STATES

For the last half-decade or so, Hunt­ing­town’s wrestling pro­gram had el­e­vated it­self to be­come the top pro­gram in the South­ern Mary­land Ath­letic Con­fer­ence and one of the bet­ter teams in the state. But as the 2017-18 sea­son com­menced, the Hur­ri­canes still didn’t have very much to show for it.

But af­ter a dom­i­nant show­ing at North Point High School on Nov. 10, Hunt­ing­town fi­nally had a state cham­pi­onship tro­phy, as the Hur­ri­canes de­feated Mount He­bron 46-18 to win the Class 3A state du­als cham­pi­onship.

“I’m re­ally happy. I can’t re­ally ex­plain it,” said Hunt­ing­town coach Steve Gil­li­gan. “I watched my brother [Kevin] win a state cham­pi­onship with Stephen De­catur 10 years ago. Twenty-one years ago, I par­tic­i­pated in the event [wrestling for Lackey] and we were able to win a cham­pi­onship, so it’s re­ally nice to be able to fi­nally bring home a cham­pi­onship for Hunt­ing­town High School. I’m kind of at a loss for words. It’s pretty cool.”

Hunt­ing­town won 10 of 14 matches in the cham­pi­onship dual with Mount He­bron, but started off in a 6-0 hole af­ter a loss in the dual-open­ing 152-pound match. But Jacob Cramer’s pin at 160 kicked off a four-match run by the Hur­ri­canes as they took con­trol. Tristin Breen (170) and Joe Mur­ray (182) both won by fall, while Dakota Cram se­cured a 12-11 de­ci­sion at 195 to give the Hur­ri­canes a com­mand­ing 21-6 ad­van­tage that they would never re­lent.

“You have to keep that good at­ti­tude and good vibe. You have to keep things rolling,” Breen said. “The ex­cite­ment that you give off is a big part of it. To be there for your team­mates while they’re wrestling, no mat­ter win or lose, is im­por­tant.”

Mount He­bron won three straight to close to within 21-18, but the Hur­ri­canes won the fi­nal six matches to close out the de­ci­sive vic­tory.

“I thought we had the abil­ity,” he said. “I knew there were a few weight classes where they had some guys that maybe were a lit­tle bit bet­ter than our guys com­ing in. But I knew that if we went out there and wres­tled our style and our match that we could go out there and put on a dom­i­nant per­for­mance. The kids were able to do that. I was re­ally pleased with how they went out in the fi­nals. They went af­ter the bonus points and no­body backed down. We won some re­ally, re­ally good matches against some tough kids.”

FILE PHOTO BY ANDY STATES

Hunt­ing­town’s wrestling team won its first state du­als cham­pi­onship, win­ning the 3A ti­tle in Fe­bru­ary.

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