As the official grabbed his wrist and held up his arm, Brant Leadbeter finally grinned with relief.
The Northern senior had felt the pressure to defend his Maryland 4A/3A 113-pound wrestling championship Saturday night, and only after he grinded out a 5-4 decision in the title bout to cap a perfect 39-0 season could he relax.
“I felt like I had a lot to lose,” Leadbeter said after he beat Hereford junior Anthony Genco with a third-period takedown. “Coming into a match wrestling with no losses on the season, it’s just a relief to get another one.”
Leadbeter and Thomas Stone 182-pounder Garrett Lineberger both won their second straight state crowns to complete undefeated senior seasons, and Broadneck 132-pound sophomore Cameron Harrell won his second straight title with a first-period pin, highlighting the 12 local wrestlers who won individual titles at the Maryland 4A/3A Wrestling Championships at Cole Field House at the University of Maryland.
Urbana won the team title with 97.5 points, beating defending champion River Hill (89). Northern finished third with 76 points, and La Plata and Thomas Stone tied for fourth with 54.5.
Harrell’s win was the most impressive of the final round, as the All-Met executed a high crotch to a half nelson to pin Reservoir junior Mason Kilcarr 54 seconds into their bout.
Harrell screamed to the crowd after the win, then somersaulted before he leapt into his coach’s arms to celebrate.
“I wanted to be the aggressor in that match,” Harrell said. “I feel like I did a pretty good job of that.”
Lineberger mauled Urbana senior Mike Vimelson in his title match, keeping Vimelson on his back for nearly the entire first period before he earned a 16-0 tech fall.
“My game plan was just to take him down and tilt, tilt, tilt, looking for points,” Lineberger said. “I was looking for as many I could get.”
In other title bouts, DuVal 126-pound senior Thierno Diallo, Northern 160-pound senior Eric Hoffman, River Hill 195-pound junior Cory Daniel and Northwest 220-pound senior Luis Beteta all won to finish their seasons undefeated.
Daniel scored an overtime takedown to beat Wootton senior Ralph Bernardo, and Beteta scored at the end of the second period against River Hill junior Logan Kirby to win bouts that matched two local undefeated wrestlers.
Damascus 106-pound sophomore Mikey Macklin, LaPlata 120-pound sophomore Marty Margolis, Bethesda-Chevy Chase 138-pound senior Charlie Banaszak, Chopticon 145-pound senior Larry Cannon and Severna Park 152-pound senior Sam Ziff rounded out the local 4A/3A state champions.
In the 2A/1A finals held simultaneously, Glenelg senior heavyweight Sean Twigg won his second straight state title. Winters Mill won its third consecutive 2A/1A team championship.