Potomac Valley All-Star Challenge Cup
June 7, 1997
DuVal High School
Championship Dual Results
Despite facing graduation week for seniors, beach week, and SAT tests, the 13th annual Potomac Valley All-Star Challenge Cup, held June 7th, in Lanham, Maryland, was again a major success. Featuring all-star teams made up from regional USAW or AAU clubs rather than state associations, the tournament regularly draws large numbers of high school and junior league champions, many of whom don't compete in other open events. This year was no exception with 8 high school state champions and four runner-up, plus a host of kids, Cadet and Junior All-Americans in competition.
Teams consisted of one or two wrestlers representing each state at each weight from 55lbs to Heavyweight. Weight class competition was in pool format, with team points counted based on performances between state wrestlers in the pool. This years three largest pools were at 106 lbs, 115 lbs and 154 lbs with seven and six wrestlers respectively.
Prior to the start of competition, Maryland's Jason Gabrielson, nursing a sprained ankle, was presented a participation award, given to seniors who have competed in eight or more Challenge Cup events during their career. Jason competed in nine Cup competitions. It was noted that the only other senior to receive the award during the Cup's thirteen year history was University of North Carolina's Kahlil Malik, who was also injured and unable to compete at his final Cup event.
The teams present for the challenge looked impressive. Pennsylvania's team was hampered by senior graduation the day of the tournament, and by personal problems for one of its state coordinators. However, the younger classman on the team looked tough, and will likely be a contending force next year. Their lone pool winner, Brad Weisman at 123 lbs, faced a couple of tough challenges, one from Virginia's Marty Erickson, and one from Maryland's Kevin Gabrielson, who stepped up to fill brother Jason's shoes. Brad's championship pool match against Kevin was a tremendous high scoring back and forth struggle, both wrestlers scoring in double figures. Brad was able to step over a crotch throw with 15 seconds left, catching Kevin on his back, and scoring the fall with 6 seconds remaining. This was only Kevin's third loss of the season. Pennsylvania's team was spearheaded by Team Maverick.
Also missing a couple of its regular standouts due to graduations, Delaware still brought a few impressive individuals. There smallest wrestler, 55 lb Kellen McKean, destroyed his pool with falls and technical falls. He should develop into a very talented wrestler as he grows. Another very impressive performance was turned in by Delaware's 132 lb McQuail Price. In his championship pool match, he faced HS state runner-up Eric Miller of Maryland for a tough fought close victory. Delaware's team was spearheaded by the Delaware Freestate Wrestling Club.
Fielding their strongest freestyle team in recent years, and coached by some of the states best, Virginia finally came for blood, but fell just short of dethroning defending champion Maryland. The Virginia team was loaded with state champions and SE Regional kids winners, but Maryland had both luck and depth on its side. Luck in the form of a couple of key upsets, and depth in only having one no-show in its impressive roster.
At 70 lbs, Maryland's Mike Rock tackled Virginia's SE Regional winner John Erickson in what proved to be one of the best championship matches for smaller wrestlers of the day. Action was so fast with attacks and counters that within a minute a large group of onlookers had assembled to watch two of the regions finest battle it out. The score was tied at 3 each going in to overtime, when Mike used his longer reach to catch his opponent with a double leg for two to finish the match. An interesting side note was that both Mike and John wrestle for the same freestyle club, and this was Mike's first win against John.
Another great match was between Maryland's Beltway League Champion and Grand National Folkstyle 3rd place finisher Clayton Bentz, and Virginia's SE Regional third place finisher Christian Staylor. This was another toughly fought battle of young stars. Clayton won 6-5.
In the high school weight classes, Maryland high school state champ Nick Alley continued his dominance of the lightweights. He pounded all four opponents at 106 lbs with one fall, two tech falls, and a major decision.
Virginia brought their best in the "fiersom foursom" of Bret Lancaster, Ron Blunt, Benji Main, and Chip Allen, plus another local standout Seth Cameron. Benji withdrew after being injured, but Bret, Ron, and Seth blew through everyone they faced. Maryland couldn't find anyone willing to walk out on the mat against Blunt, who had already handled Maryland's best in earlier matches during the year.
State high school champion Chip Allen wrestled in the toughest weight class, 154 lbs, and faced four outstanding wrestlers before running into Maryland's high school state runner-up Keith Patterson in the championship final. Both wrestlers were a little ragged after their days work, but each was ready for a real battle, the final match of the tournament. It was quickness and technique against power and agility. Neither wrestler could score until Allen was able to gut wrench at about 1:30 into the match. Then it was a free for all back and fourth hammering. Chip used his patented ankle grab with about 30 seconds to go giving him a 10-9 lead. Keith put on the pressure with lightning attacks and a flurry of movement, but was unable to score as the time ran out.
Final championship results are included below.
Team Results Pre-HS MD, VA, DE, PA HS MD, VA, PA, DE Championship Round Maryland Virginia Bout Match VA MD VA MD 55 David Rice Sean Elliot 10 0 4 0 60 Mike Rowe Jordan Frishkorn 15 13 3 1 65 Cameron Watkins Forfeit 0 4 70 Mike Rock John Erickson 3 5 ot 1 3 75 Forfeit Daniel Vucci 4 0 80 Clayton Bentz Christian Staylor 5 6 1 3 85 Forfeit Daniel Frishborn 4 0 90 Jared Bentz Forfeit 0 4 95 Jeff Eveleth Forfeit 0 4 100 Chris Knox Forfeit 0 4 19 23 106 Nick Alley Roger Stewart 4 14 1 4 115 Ryan Forman Reed Carpenter 2:54 4 0 123 Kevin Gabrielson Marty Erickson 0 10 0 4 132 Eric Miller Forfeit 0 4 143 David Robinson Seth Cameron 10 0 4 0 154 Keith Patterson Chip Allen 10 9 3 1 165 Ivan Hardnett Doug Clark LF 0 4 178 Forfeit Ron Blunt 4 0 192 Mike Faust Forfeit 0 4 Hwt Thomas Roberts Brent Lancaster 1:00 4 0 20 21 Pool Winners 55 Kellen McKean DE 60 Jordan Frishkorn VA 65 Cameron Watkins MD 70 Mike Rock MD 75 Daniel Vucci VA 80 Matt Eveleth MD 85 Clayton Bentz MD 90 Jared Bentz MD 95 Jeff Eveleth MD 100 Chris Knox MD 106 Nick Alley MD 115 Josh Sharkey VA 123 Brad Weisman PA 132 McQuail Price DE 143 Seth Cameron VA 154 Chip Allen VA 165 Ivan Hardnett MD 178 Ron Blunt VA 192 Mike Faust MD Hwt Brent Lancaster VA Pre-HS OW Mike Rock - Maryland HS OW Chip Allen - Virginia