Five local teams placed in the top five and one – Mount Pisgah Christian – came away with a championship trophy in the Georgia High School Association (GHSA) traditional state tournament Feb. 9 through 13 at the Macon Centreplex. Also, several individual wrestlers took home titles in their weight classes and others placed in the top four.
In Class A, Mount Pisgah won the title with 256.0 points, giving the Patriots a sweep of both the traditional and dual state meets this year. Wesleyan finished fifth (149.5). Mount Pisgah’s Catherine-Grace Bertrand (106, third), Josh Noble (113, first), Marley Washington (126, second), Tyler Nelson (132, first), Josh Lange (138, fourth), Joey Bertrand (152, first), Jake Piccirilli (160, third), David Bertrand (170, first) and Cole Spence (220, third) each placed.
“It feels great,” Patriots coach Josh Merry said. “It allowed us to make the statement that we were the best team in all areas in Class A. Last year there were two different champions in A (Commerce and Trion), and in the prior six years, Commerce won both (titles). We dethroned everybody and it showed we were the best team in Class A, hands down, no questions asked.”
Merry added he was “just thankful we had a season” because of the challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“When we were training during the summer, we were very limited because of all the restrictions, and we made due because our kids made a commitment to get better,” he said. “As the season started, we made the correct adjustments. The GHSA and Atlanta Takedown Association were able to hold it all together for us to have a state championship, which we’re pleased and honored to have.
“Despite us having four individual champs, winning any type of championship is a total team effort. It took all our guys winning matches and placing. We were led by our seniors, because they put forth this effort and goal when they started years ago. With their hard work as leaders, we were able to (win) the championships.”
Also in A, Holy Innocents’ wrestlers Art Martinez (126, first), Jake Swink (145, first) and James Gleeson (182, fourth); Wesleyan’s Trent DeBow (152, fourth), Payton McKemie (170, third), Samuel Schmitt (182, second) and Tanner Bivins (285, second) and Mount Vernon’s Eric Dodder (182, first) also placed.
In 7A, Camden County claimed the crown with 253.5 points. Roswell’s Christian Cartier (152, second) and Milton’s Ben Williams (170, first) each placed.
In 6A, Buford captured the championship with 183.0 points, and Cambridge placed fourth with 129.0. Cambridge’s Cullen Kane (132, third), Sebastian Shered (152, second), Evan Kurtz (170, third) and Connor McHugh (220, second) and North Atlanta’s Seth Fagin (138, fourth) each placed.
In 5A, Woodland of Cartersville took home the crown with 243.0 points, and Woodward was third (182.0). Woodward’s Colby McBride (106 pounds, first), Michael Kilic (145, first), Gunnar Filipowicz (170, first), Matthew Singleton (182, first) and Ben Valdes (195, third) each placed.
In 4A, Jefferson won the title with 265.0 points. Marist’s Nolan Pozzobon (182, first) and Thomas Termini (120, second) each placed.
In 3A, Rockmart captured the championship with 202.5 points. Westminster’s Lowell Jones (195, fourth) placed.
In 2A, Fannin County won the crown with 186.0 points. Lovett finished second (172.5). Lovett’s Alex Hyman (106, second), Josh Robinson (126, second), Parker Coy (132, first), Al Coy (138, second), Christian Bell (195, fourth) and Wells Kamerschen (220, third) and Pace’s Sam Howe (126, third) and Alex Mathias (182, fourth) each placed.
In the girls’ state tournament, Chestatee captured the championship with 103.0 points. Cambridge’s Lindsey Noble (122, third) and Centennial’s Citlali Salas-Abrego (122, fourth) each placed.