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Spongers' forfeits help Cougars to win

By BOB PUTNAM, Times Staff Writer
© St. Petersburg Times
published January 9, 2002

CLEARWATER -- Tarpon Springs had a depleted lineup. Two starters were academically ineligible and three others failed to make weight Tuesday. That wasn't good news for the Spongers, who traveled to Countryside for a dual meet.

Behind by 24 points due to four forfeits, the Spongers fell behind more in the actual bouts for a 50-30 loss.

"We were missing a few guys and that hurt," Tarpon Springs coach Jim Wioland said. "I was pleased with the way we wrestled considering what we had."

The Spongers went ahead 12-0 thanks to pins by Daryl Pasco (103 pounds) and Clement Benoot (112).

The Cougars responded by winning the next seven bouts. AJ Hixon (119) and Jon Rowe (135) each scored a major decision and Steve Spicuzza (140) and Matt Turtzo (145) each recorded pins.

"We were a little sloppy tonight," Countryside coach Dave Frayer said, "but it's good to get the rust off after the vacation."

The Cougars were without Vince Scholl (twisted ankle) and Frayer said he decided not to use Dominic DeNunzio because of the forfeits.

Still, Countryside didn't need too much star power and had the victory sealed after Turtzo's pin.

Both teams split the final six bouts.

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