Mat Dogs send 11 qualifiers to State!

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By R. Alan Richardson sports editor

Morgan County participated in the GHSA Area 3A – A Wrestling Regional and Sectional this past week and will now move on to the State Championships in Duluth this weekend. Coach John Robbins was very positive about his team’s chances after the sectional. He said, “Our guys wrestled great, besting every team there other than Jefferson. Our Murderer’s Row continues to lead us, and could all find themselves in the state finals if they have a good weekend.  From 132 all the way up to 182, we are as good as they come. Adams and Berisko wrestled better than they have all year, and a number of our middle weights all the way up to Wright have the ability to win it all.”

Let me try to make some sense of the wrestling playoffs. Thanks to Coach Robbins for helping me have some semblance of understanding as this sports editor knows absolutely nothing about wrestling. According to Robbins, the Area AAA is similar to the Region AAA tournaments in other sports. There are 14 weight classes in wrestling with the top four qualifiers from each area that will compete in the Sectional. The Dogs sent a number of individuals to the Sectional to wrestle in their respective weight classes to compete in the 16 man brackets. The top eight finishers from the sectionals will then go at it in the GHSA State Championships with one taking on eight, two going up against seven and so forth.

The State Championships will be held February 11-13 at the Gwinnett Arena with all six classifications competing under one roof. The Dogs will send 11 qualifiers to the State Championships out of a possible 14 weight classes. Robbins again remarked, “This event is quite a spectacle. We will have 13 representatives at the state meet including two alternates that could step in due to a disqualification or injury. Six through one are automatically in the Championships. This is more of an individual event, but when the points are added up you could also grab a state championship as well. We have four or five kids that could wrestle in the finals. That’s their ultimate goal as high school wrestlers to wrestle in the championship match.”

Individual results from the Sectionals:

106 Mason Adams 6th

120 Kvein Berisko 5th 126 Donovan McElligott 9th (alternate)

132 Garner Drummond 4th

138 Jody McAlister 1st (won a 3-2 triple OT decision over a 3 x defending State Champ from Banks Co. in the semi-fi nals…likely a preview of the state finals match at 138 this Saturday)

145 Luke Mitchell 2nd

152 Mason Woodham 6th

182 Dmonta Wright 2nd

195 Ladarrius Andrews 6th

HWT Matthew Callaway 10th (2nd al ternate)

Entries for the state matches along with their overall season record follow. Mason Adams (22-19), Kevin Berisko (24-21), Garner Drummond (33-12), Jody McAlister (45-7), Luke Mitchell (41-8), Mason Woodham (27-14), Antonio Robinson (41-10), Dmonta Wright (41-8), and Ladarrius Andrews (31-21).

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