Mill Creek will host a Class AAAAAA sectional with 79 local wrestlers, while Allatoona will entertain its nine wrestlers in one Class AAAAA sectional. Cambridge will host the 20 local wrestlers that qualified from Area 7AAAAA.
Whitefield Academy, Walker, North Cobb Christian and Mount Paran Christian combined to send 12 wrestlers to a Class A sectional at Darlington.
The tournaments at Mill Creek, Cambridge and Allatoona will begin today, with the Class A tournament at Darlington starting Saturday.
Wrestlers qualified for sectionals by virtue of their top four finishes and alternates at their respective area championships.
The Class AAAAAA and AAAAA sectionals involve 16-man brackets, with the top eight finishers in each weight class earning a spot in next week’s state championships at the Arena at Gwinnett Center.
Class A wrestlers must navigate an eight-man bracket and place in the top four to reach the state finals.
Pope, which saw its streak of six consecutive area traditional titles come to an end last week, qualified 10 wrestlers to Cambridge.
Among the Greyhounds’ entrants are area champions Josh Tazzetta (113 pounds), Jake Adcock (138), Davis Burson (152) and Jake Henson (160).
Tyler Haskin, who placed second at 132 pounds and was a state runner-up last season at 126, opted not to wrestle after breaking two fingers on his right hand in the semifinal round of last week’s area tournament.
“(The injury) is starting to swell up and I decided to sit this out,” Haskin said. “I could damage my hand even more if I competed, so I’m going to let it heal and start again when it’s better. I told the team they’ll be OK without me, and I’ll be cheering them on this weekend.”
Kell will bring six wrestlers, including area runners-up Matthew Springfield (120) and Calvin Irby (160), while area champion Darius Burton (195) leads four from Sprayberry.
Area 5AAAAA runner-up Allatoona is hosting the sectional for the second straight year. The Buccaneers qualified nine wrestlers, including area champions Ethan Benedict (132), Jack Woods (138), Jacob Robinson (152) and Will Kemp (160).
“I’m an idiot for hosting this again,” Allatoona coach Joe Lanier quipped. “It was extremely difficult to run the tournament and coach my team last year. This time, my assistant coach, Ian Sellars, will be running it, and I’ll be able to coach.
“I’ve coached the kids all year long, and I wanted to keep that routine as normal as possible.”
Area 4AAAAAA runner-up Kennesaw Mountain (12) tied Collins Hill and Douglas County for the most number of wrestlers headed to Mill Creek.
The Mustangs’ contingent includes area champions Matt Michaud (132), Henrio Thelemaque (145) and Justan Rivera (182).
Marietta, which won the Area 4AAAAAA crown, qualified 11, led by champions Jason Caldwell (106), Alex Ambio (152), Jonathan Gates (170), Isaiah Borne (195) and Jeron Holsey (285).
Area champions Alex Noble (126), Tyri Brown (160) and Christian Wade (220) lead McEchern’s group of 10, while Aaron Powell (120) heads the list of seven from Harrison.
Pebblebrook has 113-pound champion Taqee Muhammed among its two qualifiers, while Hillgrove’s contingent of six includes 138-pound champion Aaron Powell.
Wheeler and Lassiter each advanced eight wrestlers, while Walton is sending seven.
The Wildcats’ group includes area champions E.J. Walker (106) and Aslan Kilic (113), while the Trojans have title-holders Connor Shields (182) and Philip Murray (195). The Raiders will be led by area winners Jacob Murphy (138) and George Humphreys (285).
Walker qualified five wrestlers to Darlington, including champion William Schubert (145) and runner-up Cameron Milton (152). The third-year varsity program of Mount Paran Christian advanced wrestlers for the second straight season, with area runner-up Ian Williams (106) and third-place finisher Carter Smith (220) leading the way.
North Cobb Christian’s Mark Watson, who was second at 126 pounds, joins Sam Resultan (106) and Bryant Bell (170) as qualifiers. James Johnson (138) and Jere Cuffrey (285) advanced from Whitefield Academy.