Following a long week hampered by snow and ice, local wrestlers squared off on the mats at the Bowdon Invitational on Saturday. The tournament featured 12 teams from the west Georgia area, and will be the last regular season action for many wrestlers before area competition.
Carrollton dominated the competition with 242.5 total team points. The Trojans finished with 12 medalists and five tournament champions.
“I’m very proud of the Trojans. They came out here and put in some hard work against some quality competition,” said Head Coach Michael Cleek. “I hope this tournament is something that gives us the desire to get better next week when we get ready to go to area, which begins the path to state.”
Tournament champions for the Trojans included Brent Parivechio at 120 lbs., Luke Sawyer at 132 lbs., Jacob Walsingham at 152 lbs., Hunter Cantoral at 160 lbs., Brock Bibbee at 182 lbs.
Parivechio was named Most Outstanding Lightweight at this year’s Bowdon Invitational.
“I can’t say enough about Brent Parivechio, he wrestled one of the best guys in this side of the state in Shadinger from Central, and he gutted out a win,” said Cleek.
The Heard County Braves finished second in overall team standings behind Carrollton with 179 points. The Braves had two first-place finishers, and 10 total medalists.
Kevin Hendrix took home the gold medal at 126 lbs., and Logan Moran was the 220-lb. champion for Heard.
“I feel like we did really well today,” said Heard County Head Coach Kyle Yates. “We brought 12 kids to the tournament, and we had 10 kids place in the top 6. I’m really proud of Kevin Hendrix and Logan Moran for winning their weight classes.”
Yates emphasized that he this weekend’s tournament provided crucial last-minute experience for his wrestlers before area competition.
“I feel like we have a good shot at getting 8 or 10 guys through area into the next round of state competition,” said Yates. “I think our guys are very excited about it.”
Lagrange placed third in team standings with 164 points. Central finished just behind the Grangers in fourth place with 163 team points.
Central Head Coach Jereme Fountain said he was pleased with the effort his team showed at the tournament.
“We had some younger kids win some matches that nobody really expected them to win,” said Fountain. “Overall, I’m very pleased.”
Central grappler Zane Simmons finished as tournament champion at 113 lbs. Simmons defeated Haralson County’s Daniel Muse in a 10-7 decision in the final round.
“If we can build on what we did today, I feel like we will do very well in area,” said Fountain. “We had a lot of guys who couldn’t be here today, so considering that, we did really well with what we had.”
The Lions had 9 medalists in Saturday’s competition.
Haralson County finished in sixth place in team standings with 8 medalists and one tournament champion in 106-lb. Jacob Wilson.
Case Jiles led the Mt. Zion Eagles with a first-place finish at 195 lbs. Jiles was also named Most Outstanding Heavyweight at the Bowdon Invitational. The Eagles had two second-place finishers and 5 total medalists.
“We have some things we have to tweak between now and next week, but I feel like they put forth a great effort and fought hard,” said Mt. Zion Head Coach Allen Newton. “I’m proud that our guys wrestled hard the entire match. Some of them got in a bad position, and they never quit fighting.”
Newton noted that Bryce Hill (152) and Cade Barrow (182) both finished strong in their championship matches.
“Those two guys wrestled very tough matches in the finals,” said Newton. “Case Jiles wrestled probably the best match I’ve ever seen him wrestle. I’ve coached him four years, and this was probably as good as he’s ever done.”
The Temple Tiger wrestling team had two tournament champions in Saturday’s competition. Head Coach Caleb Hannah said he has high hopes for his two senior grapplers that took home gold medals.
Preston Hulsey won the 145-lb. weight class with an 11-6 decision over Carrollton’s Kaleb Thomaston. John Austin Robinson finished with a strong 15-5 major decision in the 170-lb. class finals.
“I’m proud of those guys, and how well they are doing at this point in the season,” said Hannah. “They are both seniors who are coming off some disappointing finishes last year in which they just came up short. John finished second at state, and Preston had a third-place finish. Those two guys are really doing well, and I’m optimistic about their chances going into area competition.”
Local teams will now prepare for area tournaments next weekend.
Stay tuned to The City Menus Sports for more coverage of your favorite local teams.