Four Dawson County High School wrestlers qualified for the state sectionals last weekend at Jefferson High School.
Headed to Dublin, site of the next round, are Tigers: Andrew Lovingood (135), who finished third, and fourth place qualifiers Charles Short (145), James Evans (112) and Tobie Lumpkin (189).
Lovingood and Lumpkin are both ninth graders.
“I’m really excited to have two freshmen qualify,” said Head Coach Arron Haynes.
“It is rare for a wrestler to have the opportunity to do that four years. The other two are returning qualifiers and we are looking to improve on last year’s results. All four wrestled a great tournament,” he added.
Each of the wrestlers has a chance at a state title depending on their finish this weekend. Only the top four in each weight class will qualify for the state championship round to be held at the Gwinnett Arena in Duluth, Feb. 17-19.
Tigers Preston Adams, Travis Dawson, Evan Kells and Josh Gee will be alternates with fifth place finishes last weekend. If someone in their weight class becomes unable to wrestle in Dublin then they will take their place.
Dawson placed in fifth as a team at the event. Jefferson High School won the area championship.
Haynes also had to say farewell to five seniors.
Unable to qualify and ending their Tiger careers were: Timothy Blythe, Jaziel Bustamante, Kyle Maciolek, Casey McGinnis and David Wood.
“Of course it always hurts to see the career end for seniors, but I am excited about the youth this year and for the future. The seniors will be truly missed and I appreciate all their hard work and dedication to our program,” Haynes said.
The Tiger head coach also praised his coaching staff and fan support at the tournament.
“Our fans were great all weekend and my coaching staff worked their tails off to get the boys prepared,” Haynes added.
The Tigers wrestled in tune up to the Area Traditionals with a match at Jackson County last Tuesday, Feb. 1. Dawson wound up on the short end of a 45-27 score to a very strong Panther team.
Winning matches for the Tigers were: Lovingood and Gee with pins. Also picking up points were Charlie Short with a 7-3 decision over Brandon Espinal at 145 pounds.
Preston Adams and Evan Kells picked up wins by way of forfeit.