By Lem Satterfield @satterfield_lem
This was supposed to be the weekend that Damascus’s dual meet-winning streak came to an end, according to wrestling internet and social media discussions.
But the Swarmin’ Hornets, yet again, emphatically turned calamity into conquest.
Damascus (12-0) dominated Stephen Decatur High School of Berlin, Maryland, 48-17, in the championship bout — winning 10 of 14 individual matches to securing the wrestling program’s 164th consecutive victory at the Warriors’ Duals Invitational at La Plata High School in Waldorf on Dec. 21-22.
Sophomore, junior and senior state runners-up Michael Emerick (126), Timothy Furgeson (182) and Elijah Baisden (220) all went 8-0, over the course of the two-day affair, as did junior Silas Patton (106).
Finishing at 7-1 were sophomore Joe McKneeley (113) and junior Aiden Beall (195), with freshmen Colton Delvaille (120), sophomore Nick Biava (132), freshman Brodie Douglas (138), junior Andrew Creedon (160) and sophomore Sam O’Brian (170), all going 6-2.
Against Stephen Decatur, O’Brian, Furgeson and Baisden’s registered pins, Creegan earned a technical fall; junior Isaiah Bell (152), a major decision; and Patton, Beall and freshman Chris Hyre (145), decisions.
Coached by John Furgeson, the Swarmin’ Hornets ended their second straight 25-0 season in February with their 152nd victory and an unprecedented sixth straight state duals crown.
Last weekend’s effort came on the heels of a 34-25 victory over non-divisional county rival Sherwood on December 19, which was decided on a fall by Creegan in the final bout of the night.
“I think a lot of teams around the state think that this is the year to break ‘The Streak,’ but this match was a statement that we’re still the same Damascus that we’ve been,” said Baisden, who competed at 285-pounds last year.
“As far as my weight goes, I’m close enough to 220 to wrestle there, but I’ll wrestle wherever the team needs me, depending on that match. This was a great opportunity to wrestle Stephen Decatur to make a statement. The streak is a great thing, and it’s super important to me that we keep it alive for all those who came before me and for my team.”
The Swarmin’ Hornets’ winning streak ranked sixth, nationally, according to Wrestling USA Magazine, whose top five teams are Brandon, Florida (459 straight wins from 1973-to-2008); Winston Salem Parkland Magnet; North Carolina (266 from 2006-to-2012); Weaver, Alabama (221 from 1991-to-1999); LaGrange Troup County, Georgia (217 from 1988-to-2001); and Bismarck, North Dakota (175 from 1972-to-1986).
In a non-divisional county league battle on December 21, Churchill overcame Northwest, 40-27, on pins by Ethan Nasvaderani (106), Carlos Villamar (138), Alex Samuelson (152) and Ryan Kaplow (220), with a major decision from Matt Kalavritinos (285) and decisions from Isaiah Zack (132) and Vincent Barnaba (170).
Pinning for Northwest were Charlie Thomas (113), Siavash Sarvestani (126) and Jack Thomas (195), with decisions from Manaia Alaimaio (145), John Wallmark (160) and Yoan Olympio (182).