North County Defends Home Turf, Wins 2016 Keaser Classic


The eighth annual Keaser Classic was won by hosts North County, which finished the two day tournament with an 8-0 record. The tournament was affected by this past weekend's snow, as River Hill, Perry Hall and Wilde Lake were all unable to participate on Saturday due to weather cancellations by Howard and Baltimore Counties.

North County was a dominant force, defeating its opponents by a combined score of 402-113. The team had a bright start, winning 66-6 against Wilde Lake in its first match, before getting by River Hill 51-16. The Knights then topped Mervo, Perry Hall, Poly Tech and St. Charles to reach the tournament final, where they faced Montgomery Blair.

Much like North County, Blair was in the midst of a fantastic weekend. The Blazers had also not lost during the weekend and impressively defeated Chesapeake-AA, which finished in third place, 58-24. In an incredibly tight contest, North County found a way to get past Blair, winning 45-30.

The Knights were led by Casey Payne at the 120 lbs. classification, who was named the Outstanding Lightweight Wrestler of the tournament. Payne was joined by Northern's Seth Cranford in getting recognized individually. Cranford was named the tournament's Outstanding Heavyweight Wrestler while competing at the 182 classification. Blair won the tournament's team sportsmanship award.

The tournament is named in honor of famed Brooklyn Park High School graduate Lloyd "Butch" Keaser, the first African-American to medal in modern Olympic wrestling history and National Wrestling Hall of Fame member. Keaser won the silver medal at the 1976 Olympics in Canada.

To see the tournament's full results, click here!
December 19th, 2016By: Wick Eisenberg

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