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Countryside defends its tournament title

BOB PUTNAM
Published December 7, 2003

SEMINOLE - Countryside won the Hooters Classic on Saturday. In other news, the sky is blue, the grass is green and the sun rises in the East.

The Cougars won their third straight title with 289 points, 94 more than runner-up Punta Gorda Charlotte.

"I knew we'd be pretty strong," Countryside coach Dave Frayer said. "But I didn't know we'd be this strong."

Frayer had some reservations before the tournament. The Cougars lost three state champions from last season's team that finished as the Class 2A state runner-up. But only the names changed.

Countryside had place-winners in 12 of the 14 weight classes. The Cougars didn't have wrestlers in the other two classes.

The champions were Kent Costell (103 pounds), Casey Schreiber (135), Dominic DeNunzio (145), A. Jay Hixon (152), Wes Walker (160), Ben Rzymek (189) and Toby Hantraft (275).

DeNunzio, a state runner-up last season, was the MVP. The senior won all four of his bouts, two by pins.

Dixie Hollins' 215-pounder Dan Puckett was the county's other tournament champion.

Barons win Northside Christian tournament

ST. PETERSBURG - With everyone returning from last season's team that finished second at the City Championships and the district meet, St. Petersburg Catholic had the depth to bring home the school's first tournament title.

Competing in Northside Christian's tournament, the Barons fulfilled their goal by dominating the seven-team field.

St. Petersburg Catholic beat Tampa Prep, Indian Rocks Christian, Sarasota Booker, Northside Christian and Clearwater Central Catholic in dual meets. The 18 points were the most the Barons allowed, to the host Mustangs.

Kevin Roche (125), Wes Miller (145), Andrew Kolonick (152), Adam Hubbard (171) and Chris Hubbard (275) went undefeated for St. Petersburg Catholic.

The biggest surprise was Kolonick, who was MVP. A ninth-grader who came out for wrestling after football ended, Kolonick had two weeks of practice before the tournament. He was near perfect with pins in four of five wins.

Venice wins big

EAST LAKE - On the strength of six class winners, Venice won the 2003 East Lake Invitational at East Lake High School.

The Indians easily outdistanced the 19-team field, outscoring second-place Miami Southridge 262-179.5. Bloomingdale was third with 132.5 points.

Venice's Jeremie Cook won the 171-pound class with a 10-4 decision and was named the most outstanding wrestler of the tournament. In addition to Cook, Venice's Shawn Rouhan (103 pounds), Keith Koziel (112 pounds), Brian Little (160 pounds), Mike Cozy (189 pounds) and Adrian Bull (275 pounds) won their classes.

Three Ridgewood wrestlers won their classes, including Billy (130 pounds) and Matt Bullwinkel (135 pounds). Keith Coghlon won the 140-pound class with a pinfall at 1:41.

- Times correspondent Brandon Wright contributed to this report.

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