NORTH FULTON/FORSYTH COUNTY, Ga. — Five North Fulton and Forsyth County wrestling teams earned bids to the dual state wrestling championships Jan. 16-18, and all had strong showings. West Forsyth and Blessed Trinity took third place, and Cambridge and Mount Pisgah were fourth in their respective classes. The state meet took place at the Macon Centreplex.
West Forsyth improved on its 2019 finish in the consolation semifinals by advancing to and winning the Class 7A third-place match.
West was led by Dylan Fairchild who accumulated 30 points with five pins in five matches. Ethan Rickert was close behind with 28 points behind with four pins and a major decision win.
The Wolverines cruised through the first round and won 13 of their 14 matches to down Newnan, 74-6 in team scores.
West earned another lopsided, 55-15 win in the second round over Rockdale County. Noah Amick, Chase Murray Will Phipps Daba Fofana, Spencer Bovenizer and Fairchild won by pins with Christian Walker and Brody Knapp winning by decision.
After dominating its opening two matchups, West fell on the other side of the coin with a 59-10 loss to eventual state champions Camden County.
The loss put West in the consolation semifinals against Brookwood for the second straight year. The Wolverines flipped the script on the Broncos, taking a 48-32 win to avenge last year’s loss.
In the third-place match, Cam Westray (decision), Dominic Cooper (major decision), Rickert (pin), Creston Lorenzo (pin), Lance Corcimiglia (decision) and Bovenizer (pin) won to power West to a 34-25 win over Archer to secure third in the state meet.
Following a one-year absence from the state dual meet, North Forsyth returned this year and reached the consolation semifinals.
The Raiders cruised in the opening two rounds and took down East Coweta 57-10 and beat Brookwood, 44-18.
North fell to eventual state runner-up Collins Hill in the semifinals and were matched up with Archer in the consolation semifinals.
Archer dominated the lower weight classes, but North won seven of the eight matchups in the higher weight classes. Cale Bissel, Tate Bissell, Bentley Wheeler, Tristan Graham, Andrew Sexton, Mason Butcher and Eli Edwards all captured wins, but the Raiders fell short of advancing with Archer taking the contest, 37-31.
Cambridge had a strong showing in Class 6A competition, and the Bears took fourth in the state tournament.
Gavin Kane scored five pins in as many matches to lead the Bears with Evan Kurtz recording four pins and a technical fall. Kyle Romano earned three pins, a technical fall and an 11-4 decision as Cambridge’s third wrestler to go undefeated in the tournament.
The Bears opened the meet with a win over Lanier for the second straight season, taking down the Longhorns 57-24.
Cambridge had another familiar opponent in the second round, Alexander, who downed the Bears in the quarterfinals last year. The Bears reversed their fortunes, however, and earned a 43-28 win over the Cougars. Kurtz, Mike Hudson, Connor McHugh, Mason Truncale, Jason Romano, Ben Werth, Kyle Romano, Brendan Boyd and Kane all won their matches against Alexander.
The Bears advanced to the semifinals with the win but then fell to state runner-up Richmond Hill. Cambridge bounced back in the consolation semifinals and won nine of its 12 matches against Brunswick to advance to the third-place match.
Cambridge’s meeting with Creekview went back and forth, but Creekview ultimately took the battle of the Bears, 35-30.
Cullen Kane, Werth, Kyle Romano, Gavin Kane, Kurtz and Hudson won their matches against Creekview.
The Titans improved on their 2019 showing and captured third place in Class 4A competition.
BT rolled over Madison County in the opening round, 58-21, then advanced to the semifinals with a 44-30 win over Northwest Whitfield.
The Titans were relegated to the consolation bracket with a 50-28 loss to state champs Woodward Academy.
Thomas Riordan, Joey Moroski, Patrick Riordan, Kevin Daniels, Gunner Filipowicz, Aaron Werkheiser, Nick Anderson, Mavrick Torrico and Nick Pirinelli all won their matchups with West Laurens to power a 48-30 win to send the team to the third-place match.
The Titans took advantage of the opportunity and downed Northwest Whitfield, 46-21, for third place. Gunner Filipowicz went 5-0 in the tournament with five pins.
Mount Pisgah continued its streak of notable performances at the team dual state meets by placing fourth in Class A competition.
The Patriots received a first-round bye before taking on Tuner County in the quarterfinals. Brady Nardella, Brock Foley, Josh Noble, Tyler Nelson, Shane Johnson and Joy Chane won by pin with Joey Bertrand taking a 9-0 decision and Brad Spence earning a 9-5 decision.
The Patriots’ win steak ended in the semifinals with a 42-22 loss to state champions Trion. In the consolation semifinals, the Patriots dominated Athens Christian, winning 11 of the 14 matches for a 60-15 win.
Mount Pisgah fell just short of taking third place in the tournament, falling 34-33 to Holy Innocents’ in the third-place match.