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WRESTLING: A young Dawson County team picked up wins at Pickens to begin the season
Dawson’s Luke Lowe pins his Heritage opponent down shortly before winning the match on Tuesday, Nov. 15. - photo by Rio White

The Dawson County varsity wrestling team hit the mat for the first time this season at a meet hosted by Pickens High School Tuesday, Nov. 15.

With the Tigers facing Heritage (Catoosa) and the hosting Dragons, junior Luke Lowe won the first of his two challenging matches while freshmen Landon Glander and Mason Rosenberg won their first career varsity matches. 

Glander won both of his battles to lead the way for Dawson. 

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While the Tigers fielded a young team and had a few weight classes missing from the opening night of action, head coach Arron Haynes drew plenty of positives from the performances and is looking forward to a fuller squad at the upcoming Dawson Duals meet.

“We learned just how much ‘want to’ our team has in that not a single person quit on the mat,” Haynes said. “I felt like even though we took losses, there was a lot of good that came of the night.”

For Haynes, the youth of the team presents a situation that is both challenging and exciting. 

With all but two players on the team either first-year wrestlers or freshman, Tuesday’s matches gave the roster much-needed experience.

Haynes was impressed with the effort from his team in the face of a steep learning curve.

Head coach Arron Haynes speaks to senior Noah Roberson after his match against Heritage. - photo by Rio White

“There was not a single thing to hang our heads about last night,” Haynes said. “I also saw that our wrestlers are ahead of where I thought we were going in. Moves that seemed to escape them at practice showed up when it counted. I am excited for the future.”

Next up, the Tigers will host the Dawson Duals event and are set to have most of their weight classes back in contention. 

That event will have many schools participating and will give Dawson a broader test of their skills. Haynes believes that the team’s efforts at Pickens were a good foundation for the season moving forward.

“Overall, I knew where we stood going in and we had a better showing than I expected,” Haynes said. “We still have a lot of wrestling to learn and the freshmen have to get used to wrestling juniors and seniors, but the future both distant and immediate looks bright.”

The Dawson Duals tournament will begin at 9 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 22.