Wrestling team wraps up season at state tournament

Freshman Gene Smith finishes 5th, team places 24th overall

Emily Glenn, Staff Writer

The wrestling team finished their season last month at the state tournament in Macon. All 12 varsity wrestlers qualified for state, a remarkable achievement for the team and a significant improvement over last year. To qualify, each wrester had to place in the top three in the region for their individual weight class.

The opening day of competition was Friday, February 12, and wresters needed to avoid losing two matches in order to advance to the next round on Saturday. The only member of the team to avoid elimination was freshman Gene Smith, who placed fifth in his weight class of 106 pounds.

I was very happy to place,” he said. “I am also excited for next year because hopefully I can do better.”

Junior Bishop Marshall suffered a sprained AC joint in his shoulder the first day of the tournament and could no longer compete.

“Hurting my shoulder was very disappointing because I missed state last year with a torn meniscus,” he said.

The team placed 24th overall at state, and for seniors Zani Patasin, Joel Chatfield, Ryan Law, and Will Pentecost, it was their last time taking the mat for St. Pius X. When asked what he will miss most about wrestling, Pentecost said, “Competitively hurting people, and [Coach] Lancaster’s grunts from the sideline.” 

The wrestlers’ road to state was filled with intense training and exhausting workouts.

“Wrestling practice is not like any other sport’s practice,” sophomore Shug Bentley said. “Constant drilling, running, and going live will push you to your limits. It has been a great first year experience, and I’m looking forward to next season.” 

Sophomore Joe Brewster agreed, adding, “We the people of the wrestling team think that the season was more than a season, it was a lifestyle.” 

Brewster and his teammates will look to carry this mindset with them to next winter when they gear up for yet another wrestling season and another shot at qualifying for the state tournament.