After the area traditional wrestling tournament on Saturday, Feb. 6, eight Dawson County Tigers qualified for a spot in the first round of the state tournament.
Jack McCarthy (120), Logan Buytendorp (126), Riley Westbrooks (138), Scotty Warner (152), Kincaid Schuette (170), Will Whalen (182), Colton Schuette (195) and Bradley Newton (220) will compete for individual state titles on Wednesday, Feb. 10 at the Macon Centreplex in Macon, Ga.
“When it comes down to it, our season really is just about this state tournament,” Tigers head coach Arron Haynes said after Saturday’s tournament. “Football and basketball have to win games to get into state, but we did not have to wrestle a single match until today. Everything up to this point has been kind of like a glorified practice.”
Dawson County finished third in total points during Saturday’s tournament. The host, GIlmer, won the area championship with North Murray High School finishing in second place. The Tigers scored four total points higher than Murray Co. for third place.
Kincaid Schuette, Buytendorp, Warner and Newton all finished second place in the region for their weight class. Buytendorp and Schuette both won by fall in their first match to make the area championship. Both lost by decision in the championship. Buytendorp lost 2-1 in a close call and despite playing aggressive offense the entire match, Schuette lost 6-3. Warner won 3-0 and Newton won 16-6 in their first matches. Both lost by fall in the area championship.
“Our ultimate goal was to move onto the next round,” Haynes said. “Half of our kids who qualified were area finalists so we can’t complain about that. Finished about where we thought we would be. We wrestled hard and there’s no quit in them.”
Haynes said he thinks the experience will be important for all eight of his wrestlers to get at the state tournament and thinks a few could qualify for the finals on Thursday, Feb. 11.
After a light practice on Tuesday, Haynes said his team will get on the bus and travel to Macon for the 2021 state tournament.