At the Raymond B. Oliver Invitational at McDonogh this weekend, teams and wrestlers checked out the competition to get a read on how everyone looks.
What everyone at the tournament confirmed is the Eagles are the team to beat this winter.
McDonogh dominated the overall scoring among the 20 schools, rolling up 261 points, with Jack Clark (145 pounds), Toby Hague (152) and Tyler Patrick (182) winning their respective weight class.
"For the most part, we performed well," McDonogh coach Pete Welch said. "Where we lost, we lost to good kids, but we've been in every match."
Smyrna (Del.) finished second with 209.5 points, followed by Good Counsel (208.5), Archbishop Spalding (154.5), and Georgetown Prep (147.5).
The match between McDonogh sophomore Myles Martin and junior Josh Llopez of St. Mary's Ryken at 160 pounds, which matched the No. 3 and No. 9 wrestlers in the country, according to Flo Wrestling, attracted the attention of everyone in the gym.
Martin took a 4-2 lead into the third period, but Llopez managed to escape Martin's grip with 34 seconds left in the third to tie the score, 4-4, and force overtime. With 28 seconds left in the first overtime, Llopez got a takedown to win, 6-4.
"It was a tough match," Martin said. "It was our first meeting, and he's a really tough wrestler. He's got great defense and I've just got to keep my head. I'm probably going to see him three or four more times this season. I just have to keep working and find a way to beat him."
Llopez, who was named Outstanding Wrestler of the tournament, said he is not looking forward to any future rematches.
"The kid took second at Fargo [in the national championships] and he's tough," Llopez said of Martin, who earned All-American status at the North Dakota tournament.
Archbishop Curley finished seventh after losing 132-pound wrestler Corey Huntley, who won the National Preps title last season, Friday night when he irritated a back problem that had been bothering him for the last month.
"We're not where we want to be," Curley coach Pat Curran said. "We've got injuries and weight issues and we need to work on our intensity."
Gilman finished 10th, with senior Shane Cockerille winning the 285-pound title. Spalding's Logan Breitenbach (170) finished in first place at 170 pounds.
Archbishop Spalding coach Mike Laidley said everyone on his team wrestled up at least one weight, and his Breitenbach was wrestling up two classes.
"But we finished fourth here, and everything is going well," Laidley said. 'We're confident we'll be in the mix by the end of the season. We've seen some good things here."
One of those was Breitenbach, who earned an 8-2 decision in the championship match.
"We came in here to gauge where we are for the year and I'm proud of myself," Breitenbach said.
Raymond B. Oliver Invitational