Thanks to strong performances throughout its lineup, William Penn defended its turf to take the 2012 Howdy Duncan Classic in wrestling action Saturday night.
The Colonials had four wrestlers take individual championships as they entered the classic looking to keep the championship trophy in the William Penn High School trophy case.
“It’s always good when you win your own tournament. We talked about it this week, telling each other that we wanted to keep the trophy here, if we can,” head coach Marvin Dooley said. “It’s great when you win your own tournament, and it’s great when the whole team contributes.”
The Colonials came into the meet with extra motivation because the meet was held in their gym. They were set on not losing the home-gym advantage.
“When you host the tournament, you want to win it, if at all possible,” Lars O’Neal said. “It would not be the same if we did not win it. We want to protect our home floor.”
William Penn finished the meet with 279.5 points, besting second-place Parsippany Hills (N.J.) by 60.5 points. The Colonials had wins by Roddy Honey at 113 pounds, O’Neal at 126 pounds, James Shreve at 170 pounds and Alrick Lassister at 285 pounds.
O’Neal gave William Penn a win with pinfall victory over Parsippany Hills’ Aric Imhoff. O’Neal’s strategy was to keep the match off the mat, and it paid off when he pinned Imhoff with 20 seconds left in the third round.
“I was trying not to get spladdled. I kept trying [to] get in on an angle to take him down. I worked on my moves and worked back and forth. I kept letting him up because I saw that he wasn’t as good on his feet as I expected,” O’Neal said. “I just kept away from the spladdle, and that’s what won me the match.”
Lassiter’s win came in a back-and-forth match with Glasgow’s Disco Schafferman in a 2-1 triple overtime battle.
“In a long match like that, it plays back in my head that I work and train harder than my competition,” Lassiter said. “That allows me to keep going for longer periods of time.”
Caravel Academy had three wrestlers take individual titles. Chris DiEdoardo won via pinfall at 106 pounds, Clint Ferrazzo won via a 6-2 decision and David Summerfield won Most Outstanding Wrestler after taking the title at 138 pounds in a 5-3 decision.