Five wrestlers go to state
By Greg Sullivan
The Morgan County Mat Dogs are sending five team members to the state championships this week at Gwinnett Arena after those wrestlers turned in some impressive individual performances.
Three of those five participants won area championship titles over the weekend. Nick Childers (43-5) won the 171 pound weight class, Wes East (41-4) won heavyweight and Kody Vaughters (38-7) won 130 at the region tourney held in Madison over the weekend.
Zach Yost at 140 and Jacob Akins at 103 also qualified for state with fourth place finishes.
"All five of these guys have a good chance of placing in the top six this weekend at Gwinnett Arena," said Mat Dog Head Coach John Robbins. "I was very happy that three seniors had a great show for the crowd by winning their weights even though we had some tough losses that were winnable."
Robbins said he felt like his team could have had as many as three more qualifiers if things would have gone differently for his team.
This weekend's state championships run from Thursday, February 21 through Saturday, February 23.
The team, which came into last weekend's region tournament short-handed, finished fifth in the tournament.
With the recent serious injury to Austin Sharp, and other team members out or not at full strength, the team's finish was not as good as they would have liked.
Robbins said he thought the team would have been able to challenge for second place and a trip to state for his team had they been healthy.
Only two members of the team, Yost and Akins, were able to wrestle back after being in the consolation bracket, which Robbins said also hurt the team's chances.