Hanover — Saturday,the second annual Licking Valley Invitational was even tougher than the bruiser the inaugural tournament was. With Minerva defeating the returning champion, and pre tournament favorite, Carrollton. Carrollton didn’t get the runner up trophy this year either, as Troy Christian upped their game even more than last year. Their high school brought in some high caliber freshmen to go along a returning squad that featured a returning state champion, Ethan Turner who was the tournament one seed in the 132 pound division. But even the state champion couldn’t win the title at Licking Valley, as he finished second to freshman Cody Matthews of Marengo Highland. The Tigers sent eight wrestlers to compete in the tournament and finished 10th in the field of 16. Divisions 1, 2, and 3 were all represented in the tournament.
The top finisher for the Tigers was sophomore Kade Rawlins, who competed in the 220 pound division. Kade won his first four matches of the day, taking his season win total to 19 with zero defeats until the finals. In the finals Kade lost a back and forth match to top seeded Nick Baker of Troy Christian. Baker is a senior returning district placer.
The other medalist for the Tigers was sophomore Lucas Jansen (120). The top four placers received medals and Lucas finished fourth.
The top eight weight class finishers earned team placement points and the Tigers had seven of their eight wrestlers reach the placement rounds. Aside from the medalists, placing 7th for MHS were Dawson Jansen (132), Quinton Smith (145) and Kyler Trefz (195). Finishing in eighth place was Jacob Krafthefer (138) and Phil Waters (182).
Ethan Burns (113) went 1-2 on the day, picking up a pin for team points.
Up next for the Tigers is week four of the FAC duals. On Thursday, the Tigers will travel to Jackson to take on the Ironmen. Both squads have a 2-1 league duals record. Vinton County will join as a non league opponent and make it a tri match. Tigers Head Coach Shane Paul has a career wins total of 99 and will be looking to reach the century mark.
The junior high squads also always compete at the FAC duals as well. At Jackson, there will be added excitement as Jackson will roll out and additional mat and the youth squads will also compete. Greenfield’s Youth Wrestling Club has wrestlers betwixt 2nd and 6th grades.
Submitted by Shane Paul the head wrestling coach for McClain High School.