Freshman Timothy Furgeson pinned his 160-pound Quince Orchard opponent and rose to 170 for a 1-0 upset of Northwest senior Khalil Owens as Damascus improved its winning streak to 123 consecutive dual meets at Northwest on February 4.
The Swarmin’ Hornets (21-0) swept the host Jaguars (53-21) and the visiting Cougars (51-24), with the former defeating the latter, 45-19.
The Swarmin’ Hornets enter Wednesday’s Class 4A-3A North regional duals in pursuit of their unprecedented sixth straight state dual meet championship, 15th county tournament title on February 18, and third straight and sixth overall state tournament crown.
The Swarmin’ Hornets will meet Springbrook (12-2) in one semifinal at 5:30, with Churchill (13-1) taking on Northwest (12-2) in the other, and the winners meeting for the title at 7 p.m.
A wrestler who has competed as low as 152 pounds, Furgeson is the son of coach John Furgeson and the younger brother of junior John Allan Furgeson, who placed second at counties and third at regions last year at 138 pounds.
John Allan pinned his 160-pound opponent from Northwest, but was pinned, himself, at 170 pounds by Quince Orchard’s Brett Williams, who lost, 4-2, to Owens.
“I just kept going after him,” said Timothy Furgeson, whose record on the year is 25-6. “I saw that he was getting tired, so I just kept pushing the pace.”
The Swarmin’ Hornets’ other double-winners were Ryan Lawrence (152), Paul Purkey (195) and Michael Bradshaw (285) with two pins each, Johnny McLaughlin (126) with a pin and a technical fall, Elijah Baisden (220) with a pin and a disqualification, Scottie Obendorfer (138) with a pin and a forfeit, and Josh Creegan (145) with a pin and a decision.
Timothy Furgeson has benefited from the presence of his brother and others, such as the Penn State-bound Obendorfer, a three-time county and regional champion who has placed first and second at the past two state tournaments.
In addition, there are McLaughlin and Lawrence, each of whom was a county and regional champion and finished third at last year’s Class 4A-3A state tournament.
“Practicing against John Allan, Ryan Lawrence and Scott Obendorfer…has got him believing and prepared for the end of the year,” said coach John Furgeson. “We’ve had matches against tough competition which is hopefully going to benefit him in the long run.”
It was back on Jan. 20 that the Swarmin’ Hornets faced Urbana of Frederick County, a 50-15 victory during which Timothy Furgeson wrestled down at 152 pounds for the first time and still was recovering from the flu.
The visiting Hawks moved regional fourth-place finisher Shane Acton up to face Timothy at 152, a maneuver that was intended to avoid Lawrence.
But the freshman responded with a second-period fall.
“Timothy stepped up and that’s why we had a little excitement after his match,” said coach John Furgeson. “We talked about how he needed to get mentally tough, come out and overcome the sickness and battle tough to prove to himself he could do it.”
Timothy Furgeson had simmered watching Lawrence score an easy technical fall against Urbana, simultaneously focusing his mental intensity on his upcoming opportunity.
The first period was scoreless against Acton, a junior who already owns a decision this year over state runner-up Josh Paige of Middletown. Acton chose the bottom referee’s position to start the second period, hoping for an escape or a two-point reversal for the lead.
“I like riding on top, so I was pretty confident,” said Furgeson, who locked up a cradle pinning maneuver. “I was taller than him and I felt like I was a little stronger, so I was trying to use that to my advantage.”
But as Furgeson tightened his grip against Acton, his thoughts drifted back to December, when he lost, 8-5 to third-place state finisher Tristan Breen after nearly pinning him with a first-period cradle.
“I got [Breen] on his back and didn’t finish,” said Furgeson. “But this time, I wasn’t going to let it get away.”
The triumph came four days after a 59-9 rout of county rival Paint Branch for the Swarmin’ Hornets, who totaled 11 pins and two technical falls and captured 22 of a combined 28 bouts over the course of both matches.
Purkey earned his 100th career win during the tri-meet with Northwest and Quince Orchard, having transfered from Good Counsel where he earned private schools state title as a sophomore.
“It’s nice to make it to 100,” said Purkey, a junior who is 33-1 on the year. “I did it after three years of wrestling, and I still have another one next season.”
Last month, Creegan decked Paint Branch tournament runner-up Dhedus Anumgba of Paint Branch, and John Allan Furgeson scored a technical fall against Anumgba’s 160-pound teammate, Paint Branch tournament champion Chris Pamah.
Coming off a title-winning effort at The War On Shore tournament at Stephen Decatur in Berlin, Maryland, Obendorfer had a tough bout against Urbana’s third-place regional finisher Logan Arneson, winning 6-4.
Lawrence has edged previously unbeaten Nolan Smith of Paint Branch, 1-0, after having also won The War On The Shore.
Purkey has pinned Abu Abdillah of Paint Branch, who was coming off of a tournament win at his own school, and won by decision over regional runner-up Kevin Makosy of Urbana, 10-6.
McLaughlin won, 9-5, over Urbana’s Cody Swigart, a third-place regional finisher.