D.L. Koontz, wrestling coach, said the Colonels trailed just Banks County and Rockmart in the event and he was pleased with the performance because some of the Cass competitors were junior varsity wrestlers while he let several other varsity Cass wrestlers compete in higher classifications than usual.
The top finishers for Cass were at 106 pounds, Devin Garrett, second place; 113, Chandler Blum, first place; 145, Montavious Turner, first place; 152, Devin Wills, first place; and 195, Aaron Matthews, third place.
“Altogether they did well,” Koontz said. “We used this to get some of our kids who haven’t had a lot of varsity experience into a tournament against varsity wrestlers. They need this experience. We also had some of our wrestlers compete in divisions a little heavier than usual.”
The coach said he wanted his wrestlers to have to step up and the field broke down in such a way as to make that wish happen.
“It was a tough tournament,” he said. “There were a lot of state placers in the events. We had some state champs and state runners-up in the categories.
“They all did wonderful. Some of our kids really had to step up.”
He singled out the performance of Turner, saying he’s seemingly has been drawing that level of competition throughout the whole wrestling season and Saturday was no different.
“Today he faced a tough wrestler from Ringgold, a No. 1 seed, and Montavious just turned it up for us,” the coach said.
Koontz said the Rockmart event was another chance for Cass wrestlers to prepare for the grueling finish that awaits wrestlers this time of year.
“It was another chance to test ourselves against some of the best,” he said. “The big thing is we’ll be going to Gilmer County next weekend to try to qualify for the state duals. We’ve done well as a team, but you can’t count any of the teams out that we’ll be facing there.”
He said teams such as Gilmer County, Northwest Whitfield, Southeast Whitfield and others will be competing for the same honors.
The Bobcats won both the state duals and traditional tournaments last year. Southeast Whitfield advanced to the state duals tournament a year ago.
“Any one of a bunch of teams here can put out a great product,” he said. “Hopefully the kids are as ready as they can be.”