After clearing the first major hurdle in its season, the Johnstown-Monroe High School wrestling team is preparing for the next stage beginning Tuesday at home with the Johnstown Duals.

After clearing the first major hurdle in its season, the Johnstown-Monroe High School wrestling team is preparing for the next stage beginning Tuesday at home with the Johnstown Duals.

The Johnnies will bring in Bainbridge Paint Valley, Centennial, Fisher Catholic, New Albany and Olentangy Orange in the final meet of the 2008 portion of their schedule.

"We have six or seven guys getting after it and consistently winning for us," coach Brad Todd said. "We just have to keep working hard and work toward the MBC meet (Feb. 14 at Utica) and the postseason. That's when you want everything to come together."

The Johnnies had four champions at the 10-team Licking County Tournament on Dec. 20 at Granville, but finished fourth with 181.5 points behind Newark Catholic (263.5), Licking Heights (199) and Heath (195).

The champions were Keith Tanner (135 pounds), Chris Block (140), Scott Robinson (145) and Cody Bracken (160). Block finished 4-0 with two pins as he became a three-time champion in the event.

"I'd say I'm more of a takedown wrestler because you don't get much of a workout going out and pinning someone quickly," said Block, who is 13-0. "You don't really prove anything going out and pinning someone in 30 seconds."

Robinson finished second as a freshman and third as a sophomore -- at 140 both times -- before winning the Licking County title this season. He beat Utica's Kenny Poland 7-1 in the final.

"That was a big win for Scott," Todd said. "Kenny Poland was the only kid to beat him in middle school. Beating him really gives Scott a boost."

Robinson was 5-0 to win the title and had four pins.

"It was a real confidence-boost because there were so many good teams there and good competition," Robinson said. "It's good to win because you are going up against the best teams in the county."

Tanner was 4-0 at the county tournament and Bracken was 5-0.

"Both Keith and Cody has been wrestling varsity since they were freshmen and that's a tough thing to do," Todd said. "When you're a freshman, you're thrown out there wrestling sometimes against 18-year-old men and you have to learn from your mistakes. They have learned a lot since then and we expect big things from them this year."

Other placers at the County Meet were Joe Carter (sixth, 125), Ben Caudill (fourth, 119), Ben Davis (sixth, 112), Joey Dismuke (sixth, 171), Tim Handshaw (fifth, heavyweight) and Austin Montgomery (fourth, 189).

Northridge will be the host team Saturday in an 11-team event.

The 17th-annual Northridge Invitational also will include Crooksville, East Knox, Eastmoor, Fairbanks, Fisher Catholic, Harvest Prep, Jonathan Alder, Mount Gilead, Mount Vernon B and Utica.

"I think we have a pretty good group of teams overall coming in here," coach Bill Perry said. "We have a nice group of Division II teams as well as Division III coming out."

The Vikings were last of 10 teams in the Licking County Tournament. Bradley Vahovick finished fourth at 130 to pace Northridge.

"Looking at the draw, I didn't know if (Vahovick) would place or not, but he stayed with the basics and wrestled on his feet well," Perry said. "He got some good tilts in and stayed away from making stupid mistakes. That what hurt him last year and he's been staying away from those."

At a glance

Below are the recent results and coming schedules for the Johnstown-Monroe and Northridge boys and girls basketball and wrestling and Northridge boys and girls swimming teams:

JOHNSTOWN BOYS BASKETBALL

*Dec. 19 -- Defeated Danville 55-38. Michael Kessler scored 19 points, including four 3-pointers. Riley Cannon had 13 points and Kurt Sammons added nine.

Last Monday -- Lost to Heath 69-57. Kessler scored 23 points and Cannon added 19.

Monday -- Home vs. Lakewood. The Lancers are 4-1.

Friday -- Home vs. West Lafayette Ridgewood. The Generals are 1-4.

*Jan. 6 -- Home vs. Fredericktown. The Freddies are 2-2 in the MBC.

Of note: The Johnnies are 2-3 overall and 2-2 in the MBC.

NORTHRIDGE BOYS BASKETBALL

*Dec. 19 -- Lost to East Knox 34-32. Brett VanDervort scored 16 points and Ryan King had seven.

Last Monday -- Lost to Columbus Academy 58-44. VanDervort scored 11 points and E.J. Snyder added 10.

Monday -- At Grandview Holiday Tournament (8 p.m.) vs. Grandview. The Bobcats are 4-1.

Tuesday -- At Grandview Holiday Tournament vs. Wellington or Hartley. Wellington is 1-4 and Hartley is 1-3.

*Jan. 6 -- At Utica. The Redskins were 2-3 overall before playing Coshocton last Saturday and are 1-3 in the MBC.

Of note: The Vikings are 3-3 overall and 2-2 in the MBC.

JOHNSTOWN GIRLS BASKETBALL

*Dec. 20 -- Lost to Jonathan Alder 40-32. Chelsea Cannon scored 12 points and Courtney Dingess and Chelsea Sager had seven.

Last Tuesday -- Game at Licking Valley postponed. It will be made up Jan. 12.

Last Saturday -- Played Mansfield Christian

Tuesday -- Home vs. Thornville Sheridan. The Generals are 5-2 entering a game against Bloom-Carroll on Monday.

*Saturday -- Home vs. Fredericktown. The Freddies were 5-2 overall before playing Bellville Clear Fork Christian last Saturday and are 1-3 in the MBC.

*Jan. 8 -- Home vs. Loudonville. The Redbirds were 5-2 overall before playing Lorain Admiral King last Saturday and are 3-1 in the MBC.

Of note: The Johnnies were 4-2 overall before last Saturday and 4-0 in the MBC.

NORTHRIDGE GIRLS BASKETBALL.

Last Saturday -- Played Liberty Union

*Saturday -- At Utica. The Redskins are 5-2 overall and 3-1 in the MBC.

*Jan. 8 -- Home vs. Centerburg. The Trojans were 3-4 overall before playing Newark Catholic last Saturday and are 2-2 in the MBC.

Of note: The Vikings were 0-6 overall before last Saturday and are 0-4 in the MBC.

JOHNSTOWN WRESTLING

Dec. 20 -- Finished fourth (181.5) in 10-team Licking County Tournament at Granville behind Newark Catholic (263.5), Licking Heights (199) and Heath (195).

Tuesday -- Home Johnstown Duals

*Jan. 8 -- Home vs. Northridge and Centerburg

NORTHRIDGE WRESTLING

Dec. 20 -- Finished 10th in Licking County Tournament

Last Saturday -- Competed in Bloom-Carroll Duals

Saturday -- Home Northridge Tournament

*Jan. 8 -- At Johnstown vs. Centerburg and Johnstown

*MBC contest

NORTHRIDGE SWIMMING

Dec. 19 -- Boys: Def. Newark 74-68, lost to Newark Catholic 141-57, lost to Dresden Tri-Valley 178-52; Girls: Tied Newark at 121, lost to Newark Catholic (132-105), lost to Tri-Valley (136-104)

Last Saturday -- Competed in Elgin Holiday Relay Invitational at Marion YMCA

Saturday -- At Zanesville Rosecrans Superduals