Category Archives: high school wrestling

Indy tabs young multi-sport coach to lead mat program

By Maurice Patton

A.J. Villarreal, who has coached four different sports since arriving at Centennial in February 2020, has been named wrestling coach at Independence.

The 25-year-old Illinois native is set to succeed Bryan Youngsma at the helm of the Eagles’ program, Youngsma having served on an interim basis following Jared Grindstaff’s resignation last summer.

“It’s definitely a surreal feeling,” the Wisconsin-La Crosse graduate said. “I didn’t think I’d accelerate through the ranks this quickly, but I’m glad I did. I’m definitely excited about it.”

After playing football and wrestling through his high school career at Lyons Township (Ill.), Villarreal pursued both at the college level. However, injuries prevented him from getting on the mat at UW-La Crosse.

Upon his December 2019 graduation, his job search eventually brought him to Middle Tennessee.

“I was initially hired as a teacher, and worked my way into athletics,” he said. “I just showed up at stuff, and I got brought onto both (football and wrestling) staffs.”

Villarreal assisted with the Cougars’ defensive secondary last fall as well as with the wrestling program, which advanced 152-pounder Alex Ables to the state tournament earlier this year. Additionally, he established a bass fishing club at the school, and works with the sprinters on the Centennial track team.

“Coach Villarreal is going to be a great asset to the Independence community, not just the wrestling team,” Centennial wrestling coach Philip Pelkey said. “Not only does he have a ton of knowledge in wrestling, but also does a great job of forming relationships with his athletes.

“I have no doubt that he is going to do a great job over there and continue to build on the success that Indy has had over the years. We hate to see him go, but wish him all the best.”

Picking up where Youngsma — and Grindstaff before him – left off is the expectation awaiting Villarreal.

“He just loves working with kids,” Independence principal Niki Patton said. “I think he’s an ‘all-in’ guy, based on the people I’ve been talking to, willing to help whenever and wherever he can.”

Stepping in after Grindstaff accepted an administrative position at Mill Creek Middle School, Youngsma led Independence to the Class AAA state dual sectionals and coached three Eagles – Russell Ford, Tanner Willett and Gabriel Hall – to individual region titles.

“When Coach Grindstaff resigned last year, it was in mid-June,” Patton said. “Because of the timing, most of our teaching vacancies were already filled by that point. We approached Coach Youngsma to give us one year so that we could be able to find the right candidate once we had more teaching positions available.

“He’ll still be here teaching and will likely still be involved with the program. We’re very appreciative of him stepping into that for us temporarily.”

Villarreal compared the situation at Independence favorably to the climate in which he grew up.

“I gravitated toward it because of the culture that’s been built – from kids club, through middle school up into high school,” he said. “It reminded me a lot of what I had in Illinois, where the kids club is almost a direct feeder to the high school.

“For me, wrestling and football go hand-in-hand. I’m hoping I can get more athletes doing both sports and better both programs.”

All-state wrestlers named

SM-Tn Sports

The Tennessee Sports Writers Association announced its all-state wrestling teams Thursday, recognizing the top girls performers and the top boys in Class AAA, Class A/AA and Division II.

Local honorees include Independence’s Rylee Lent, Baylee Peterson, Brooklyn Long and Russell Ford and Summit’s Jackson Masters.

The teams in their entirety:

GIRLS

103 — Ella’Lina Gonzalez, Clarksville, So.; Divine Desilets, Tullahoma, Sr.; Rylee Lent, Independence, So.; Anna Fisher, Alcoa, Sr.; 112 — Jenna Baines, Greeneville, Fr.; Betsy Nations, Collierville, Jr.; Grace Elliott, Siegel, Jr.; Amanda Thomason, Cheatham Co., Fr.; 119 — Roseanna Vaughn, Northwest, Jr.; Annalynn Rakett, Clarksville Acad., Jr.; Jennifer Pranouphong, LaVergne, Sr.; Gabriella Rincon, Heritage, Fr.; 125 — Monteria Bigsby, Riverdale, Sr.; Baylee Peterson, Independence, So.; Katelynn Hernandez, Northwest, So.; Aeliyha Threed, Stone Memorial, Sr.; 132 — Rontaysia Payne, Dickson Co., Sr.; Haley Redmond, Gibbs, So.; Addie Stadler, David Crockett, Sr.; Erica Moore, Brentwood, Jr.; 140 — Jailynn Tindall, Carter, Jr.; Bryce White, Cane Ridge, Jr.; Brooklyn Long, Independence, So.; Brette Spink, Northwest, Jr.; 150 — Maggie Graham, Bartlett, So.; Elizabeth Champion, Tullahoma, Sr.; Genesis Gilmore, Montgomery Central, So.; Kierra Blevins, Bearden, So.; 160 — Brielle Bissonette, Clarksville, Sr.; Hailey Webb, Farragut, So.; Alyssa Adamo, Rossview, Fr.; Ella Tallent, Jefferson Co., Jr.; 170 — Shelby Zacharias, Creek Wood, Sr.; Katie McNabb, Sale Creek, Sr.; Lily Chantler, Northwest, So.; Isabel Petty, Tullahoma, Jr.; 190 — Ella Murphey, Hardin Valley, Fr.; Chukwuedom Odeigah, Collierville, Jr.; Ariyanna Anderson, Creek Wood, Jr.; Jamya Brewer, Rossview, Jr.; 215 — Justina Nikolao, Rossview, Jr.; Valerie Smith, McGavock, Jr.; Taliyah Autman, Hillsboro, Sr.; Emma Tucker, Collierville, Jr.

BOYS CLASS AAA

106 — Logan Fowler, Cleveland, Fr.; Bryson Terrell, Bradley Central, So.; Russell Ford, Independence, So.; Colby Baltz, Houston, Fr.; 113 — Justin Bradford, Blackman, Jr.; Bentley Ellison, Cleveland, So.; Ethan Lipsey, Bradley Central, So.; Chas Stokes, Oakland, Sr.; 120 — Thomas Borders, Wilson Central, Sr.; Arlo Laxton, Cleveland, Jr.; Jackson Masters, Summit, Jr.; Steven Dindl, Bartlett, Jr.; 126 — Trey Bates, Beech, Sr.; Charles Randall, Cleveland, Jr.; Easton Lipsey, Bradley Central, Jr.; Wemawamungu Moktani, Munford, Jr.; 132 — Jackson Bradford, Cleveland, Sr.; Brennan Watkins, Dobyns Bennett, Sr.; Samuel Shires, Rossview, Jr.; Riley Fort, Wilson Central, So.; 138 — Trae McDaniel, Cleveland, Sr.; Luke Belcher, Bradley Central, So.; Alan Fort, Wilson Central, Sr.; Ethan Hylton, David Crockett, Jr.; 145 — Cody Chittum, Cleveland, So.; Landon Fisher, Jefferson Co., Sr.; Steven Fisak, Wilson Central, Jr.; Anthony Lynn, Bradley Central, Sr.; 152 — Jackson Hurst, Dobyns Bennett, Sr.; Aidan Brenot, Clarksville, So.; Robert Laxton, Cleveland, Sr.; Eli Clemmons, Lebanon, Sr.; 160 — Tre Morrisette, Dobyns Bennett, Sr.; Logan Fisher, Jefferson Co., Sr.; Dylan Cockman, Arlington, Jr.; Justin Brown, Blackman, So.; 170 — Mason Smith, Beech, Sr.; Matheson Meade, Bearden, Sr.; Anthony Pyron, Mt. Juliet, Jr.; Clint Morrisette, Dobyns Bennett, Sr.; 182 — Tetoe Boyd, Cleveland, Jr.; Owen Zuckerman, Houston, Sr.; Wyatt Lankford, Collierville, Sr.; Zachary Duessler, Rossview, Jr.; 195 — Dominic Love, Green Hill, Sr.; Donovan Rich, Beech, Sr.; Thomas Stadel, Maryville, So.; Connor Milhorn, Siegel, Jr.; 220 — Ashton Davis, Cleveland, Jr.; Noah Todd, Wilson Central, So.; Ryver Shelton, Jefferson Co., Sr.; Isaac Jordan, Arlington, Sr.; 285 — Joshua Cummins, Anderson Co., Sr.; Jadon Langford, Walker Valley, Sr.; Austin McClure, Bradley Central, Jr.; Samuel Harness, Cookeville, Jr.

BOYS CLASS A/AA

106 — Ethan Uhorchuk, Signal Mountain, 8th; Porter Finstad, Gibbs, Jr.; Taylor Turner, Harpeth, Jr.; Sam Frank, Fairview, Fr.; 113 — Caleb Uhorchuk, Signal Mountain, So.; Leandre Danbey Jr., Greeneville, Jr.; Gregory Gomez, Martin Luther King, So.; Malik Wooten, Millington, Sr.; 120 — Andy Cable, Pigeon Forge, So.; Spencer Reep, Gibbs, Fr.; Gregory Mechpaz, Watertown, Sr.; Noah Shriner, Signal Mountain, Jr.; 126 — Daniel Uhorchuk, Signal Mountain, Sr.; Trevor Lewis, Hixson, Sr.; Dakota Pattee, Nolensville, Fr.; Dylan Davenport, Sycamore, Fr.; 132 — Logan Heckert, Sycamore, So.; Hunter Johnson, Greeneville, Sr.; Brice Barton, Whitwell, Sr.; Perrin Clark, East Ridge, Jr.; 138 — Hunter Mason, Greeneville, So.; Luke London, Sycamore, So.; Gabriel Pennington, Eagleville, Sr.; Kale Albritton, Signal Mountain, Sr.; 145 — Riley Bennett, Fairview, Sr.; Josh Parton, Pigeon Forge, Jr.; John Pittman, Gibbs, Sr.; Brody McLemore, Eagleville, Fr.; 152 — Garrett Foreman, Pigeon Forge, Jr.; Lucas Taylor, White House Heritage, Jr.; Dalen Kimble, Sycamore, Jr.; Daniel White, Cheatham Co., So.; 160 — Kodiak Cannedy, Greeneville, Jr.; Malachi Bennett, Fairview, So.; Carson Reep, Gibbs, Jr.; Kobie Smith, Hixson, Sr.; 170 — Wyatt McLemore, Eagleville, Sr.; Kaden White, Moore Co., Sr.; Morgan Lowery, Greeneville, So.; Zach Sinner, Nolensville, So.; 182 — Noah Hill, Forrest, Sr.; Kendrick Curtis, Fairview, So.; Kevin Muschel, Signal Mountain, Sr.; Kirk Parsons, Gibbs, Sr.; 195 — Ethan Sutton, Pigeon Forge, Sr.; Preston Worley, Signal Mountain, Sr.; Nathan Montpool, Nolensville, Jr.; Arie Donaldson, Fairview, Jr.; 220 — Jonathan Morton, Elizabethton, Sr.; Caleb Wolfe, Pigeon Forge, So.; Parrish Pacetti, Hixson, Sr.; Rob Atwood, Trousdale Co., Fr.; 285 — Mustafi Algarawi, Pigeon Forge, Sr.; Jacob Clevenger, Fairview, Jr.; Kaymon Overton, East Nashville, Jr.; Landon Moore, Hixson, Jr.

BOYS DIVISION II

106 — Kade Hartline, Baylor, Sr.; Alex Ropski, Christian Brothers, So.; Joseph Calvin, Father Ryan, Fr.; Andrew Justice, Christian Acad. of Knoxville, Fr.; 113 — Nick Corday, Baylor, Jr.; Jay Eversole, Lakeway Chr., 8th; Tate Williams, Boyd Buchanan, Fr.; Bob Deitch, Notre Dame, Sr.; 120 — Keyveon Roller, Lakeway Chr., Jr.; Wills Bronson, Christian Brothers, So.; Judson Jarrett, Baylor, Fr.; Matt Oberlander, Father Ryan, So.; 126 — Jack Braman, McCallie, Sr.; Jackson Bond, Baylor, Jr.; Calvin Eason, Father Ryan, Jr.; Luke Braman, Notre Dame, Fr.; 132 — Dayne Dalrymple, Christian Brothers, Sr.; Conor Payne, Boyd Buchanan, Fr.; Tim Charpenter, Lakeway Chr., Sr.; Parker Sapp, Christian Acad. of Knoxville, Sr.; 138 — Brayden Ivy, Lakeway Chr., Jr.; Micah Tisdale, Baylor, So.; Thomas Wesnofske, Father Ryan, Sr.; Hart Gowen, Memphis Univ. School, Sr.; 145 — Garrison Dendy, Baylor, Jr.; Ben Stigamier, Father Ryan, Jr.; Sam Lee, Christian Brothers, Sr.; Nick Krauss, Grace Chr.-Knoxville, Jr.; 152 — Emory Taylor, McCallie, Sr.; Evan Anthony, Christian Brothers, Sr.; Ian McGehee, Memphis Univ. School, So.; Logan Spell, Brentwood Acad., Sr.; 160 — Aidan Bowers, Christian Brothers, Jr.; Gavin Cagle, McCallie, Sr.; Christian Howard, Memphis Univ. School, Sr.; Anthony Mannella, Baylor, So.; 170 — James Whitworth, McCallie, Sr.; Jack Revere, Battle Ground Acad., Sr.; Omaury Alvarez, Baylor, So.; Foster Salvaggio, Christian Brothers, Sr.; 182 — Gunner Garriques, Baylor, Jr.; Gervacio Gonzalez, Christian Brothers, Jr.; Torrance Bostick, Memphis Univ. School, Sr.; Thatcher Frankfather, Franklin Road Acad., Jr.; 195 — David Harper, Baylor, Jr.; Theo Sewell, Christian Brothers, Sr.; Luke Estes, Lakeway Chr., Sr.; Ethan Fogle, Christian Acad. of Knoxville, Sr.; 220 — Gabe Fisher, Montgomery Bell Acad., So.; Brik Boruff, Knoxville Webb, Sr.; Connor Billingsley, Christian Brothers, Sr.; Carson Gentle, McCallie, Fr.; 285 — Parker Peterson, Father Ryan, Sr.; Lauren McDonald, McCallie, Sr.; Max Fisher, Montgomery Bell Acad., So.; Dion Stutts, Memphis Univ. School, Fr.

Summit’s Masters among ‘Dream Team’ honorees

SM-Tn Sports

Summit’s Jackson Masters was honored by the Middle Tennessee Wrestling Officials Association this week with selection to its annual Dream Team.

Masters, a 120-pound junior who placed third at this year’s Class AAA state tournament, was joined on the squad by fellow Region 7-AAA and Williamson County competitors Alex Ables from Centennial at 152 and Mitchell Lambert from Page at 220.

Fairview coach Bubba Derrick was recognized by the MTWOA as the recipient of the Ralph Brewer Award, presented to its coach of the year.

The list of honorees in its entirety follows:

Girls Dream Team

103 — Ella-Lina Gonzalez, Clarksville, So.; 112 – Amanda Thompson, Cheatham Co., Fr.; 119 – Roseanna Vaughn, Northwest, Jr.; 125 – Monteria Bigsby, Riverdale, Sr.; 132 – Rontasia Payne, Dickson Co., Sr.; 140 – Bryce White, Cane Ridge, Jr.; 150 – Katy Champion, Tullahoma, Sr.; 160 – Brielle Bissonette, Clarksville, Sr.; 170 – Lily Chantler, Northwest, So.; 190 – Ariyanna Anderson, Creek Wood, Jr.; 215 – Valerie Smith, McGavock, Jr.

Boys Dream Team

106 – Joe Calvin, Father Ryan, Fr.; 113 – Justin Bradford, Blackman, Jr.; 120 – Jackson Master, Summit, Jr.; 126 – Trey Bates, Beech, Sr.; 132 – Sammy Shires, Rossview, Jr.; 138 – Mac Russ, Montgomery Bell Acad., So.; 145 – Cole Fort, Wilson Central, Sr.; 152 – Alex Ables, Centennial, Sr.; 160 – Justin Brown, Blackman, So.; 170 – Mason Smith, Beech, Sr.; 182 – Zachary Duessler, Rossview, Jr.; 195 – Donovan Rich, Beech, Sr.; 220 – Gabe Fisher, Montgomery Bell Acad., So.; Mitchell Lambert, Page, Sr.; 285 – Parker Petersen, Father Ryan, Sr.

Joe Wiggins Official of the Year – David Davenport; G.P. West Senior Leadership – Thomas Wesnofske, Father Ryan; Girls Wrestler of the Year – Shelby Zacharias, Creek Wood; Girls Coach of the Year – Chris Bedell, Northwest; Johnny Drennan Boys Wrestler of the Year – Hunter Borders, Wilson Central; Ralph Brewer Boys Coach of the Year – Bubba Derrick, Fairview

17 wrestlers, 11 medalists: local state tourney results

SM-Tn Sports

A total of 17 wrestlers from the Southern Middle Tennessee Sports coverage area qualified for the recent Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association state tournaments – four for the girls tourney, held on Feb. 25, and 13 for the boys Class AAA event that took place on Feb. 26 — at the Chattanooga Convention Center.

Here are the individual and team results:

Russell Ford, Independence, 106 — p. Gabriel Dietlin (AndCo), 1:40; p. James Grimes (Her), 1:09; lost by dec. to Bryson Terrell (BradCent) 4-0; p. Zach Ordonez (Bwd), 1:50; p. Colby Baltz (Hou), 1:30; 3rd place

Jarvis Little, Summit, 113 — tf. Evan Glass (Vol) 16-1; lost by md. to Bentley Ellison (Clv) 11-2; md. Roger Watkins (JefCo) 14-4; lost by dec. to Ethan Lipsey (BradCent) 11-0

Isaiah Brooks, Spring Hill, 120 — lost by p. to Thomas Borders (WilCent), 2:50; lost by p. to Keegan Perkins (Sey), 3:32

Jackson Masters, Summit, 120 — p. Zachary Teaster (Her), 4:50; lost by p. to Steven Dindl (Bart), 2:19; md. Gavin Armstrong (DB) 20-7; md. Grant Myers (Blk) 13-5; dec. Daniel James (BradCent) 5-2; dec. Dindl 6-4; 3rd place

Justin Noll, Summit, 126 — md. Connor Lyons (Far) 10-2; lost by dec. to Mason Sells (Blk) 6-2; p. Dylan Winchell (CkCo), 4:11; p. Ben Tucker (Vol), 0:26; lost by dec. to Easton Lipsey (BradCent) 6-2; lost by dec. to Sells 10-3; 6th place

Landon Desselle, Summit, 132 — p. Aubrey Thomeson (StMem), 3:16; lost by dec. to Brennan Watkins (DB) 3-2; md. Grant Hawkinson (Page) 18-6; p. Taron Patterson (BradCent), 2:53; lost by dec. to Samuel Shires (Rsv) 6-4; lost by dec. to Hunter Davis (Her) 5-3; 6th place

Austin Noll, Summit, 138 — p. Chad Washam (Sey), 2:47; lost by p. to Trae McDaniel (Clv), 1:29; tf. Clark Vaughn (Bwd) 19-2; lost by p. to Alan Fort (WilCent), 2:11; p. Jonathan Kizer (KHalls), 3:20; 5th place

Finley Jameson, Summit, 152 — lost by p. to Eli Clemmons (Leb), 3:02; p. Maclain Otting (EHam), 2:59; p. Hunter McKenna (CkCo), 5:00; md. Henry Tate (Hou) 13-2; lost by p. to Clemmons, 2:03; lost by dec. to Elijah Cowan (Tul) 4-0; 6th place

Tanner Willett, Independence, 160 — did not compete; medical reasons

Luke Justice, Summit, 170 — lost by tf. to Matheson Meade (Bea) 17-1; p. Brody Huskins (Pow), 3:26; def. Luke Krepela (Arl) by injury default; d. Jashua Chew (Blk) 3-2; lost by md. to Anthony Pyron (MtJ) 10-2; lost by p. to Austin Cooley (McMCo). 1:39; 6th place

Gabriel Hall, Independence, 182 — lost by p. to Aiden Duarte (Bea), 3:09; lost by p. to Zachary Duessler (Rsv), 1:46

Maddox Reed, Summit, 195 — md. Jermyah Davis (Mun) 11-1; lost by p. to Dominic Love (GH), 5:06; p. Chase Rozell (Arl), 2:33; lost by dec. to Thomas Stadel (Mrvl) 7-4

Ryan Smith, Summit, 285 — p. Walker Funk (Arl), 0:51; lost by tf. to Joshua Cummins (AndCo) 21-6; p. Joseph Vanada (Her), 2:16; lost by p. to Jesse Richardson (WilCent), 3:41

Class AAA team scores — Cleveland 241.0; Wilson Central 147.5; Bradley Central 131.5; Dobyns-Bennett 98.5; Summit 96.0; Blackman 85.5; Beech 75.5; Jefferson Co. 67.0; Arlington 54.0; Knoxville Halls 41.0; Houston 39.0; Cookeville 37.5; Rossview 37.0; Walker Valley 35.5; Anderson Co. 34.5; Collierville 34.5; Maryville 31.5; Oakland 31.5; Page 31.0; Bearden 28.5; Green Hill 28.0; Heritage 27.5; Lebanon 27.0; Munford 25.0; Clarksville 24.5; Franklin 23.5; Bartlett 22.0; Independence 22.0; Siegel 22.0; McMinn Co. 21.5; David Crockett 21.0; Mt. Juliet 17.0; Cocke Co. 16.0; Tullahoma 15.0; East Hamilton 12.0; Science Hill 12.0; Brentwood 11.5; Warren Co. 11.0; Volunteer 7.0; Centennial 6.0; Coffee Co. 5.0; Morristown-Hamblen West 5.0; Hardin Valley Acad. 3.0; Hendersonville 3.0; Overton 3.0; Seymour 3.0; South-Doyle 3.0; Stewarts Creek 3.0; Farragut 2.0; Knoxville West 2.0; Clinton 0.0; Karns 0.0; Morristown-Hamblen East 0.0; Powell 0.0; Ravenwood 0.0; Rhea Co. 0.0; Sevier Co. 0.0; Shelbyville 0.0; Spring Hill 0.0; Stone Memorial 0.0

Nevaeh Brinson, Summit, 103 — d. Anna Fisher (Alc) 7-6; lost by p. to Ella’lina Gonzalez (Clks), 3:00; lost by md. to Rylee Lent (Ind) 10-2; d. Ella Rimer (ScH) 9-2; 5th place

Rylee Lent, Independence, 103 — lost by p. to Ella Rimer (ScH), 4:20; p. Haven Curtis (Seq), 2:00; md. Nevaeh Brinson (Sum) 10-2; d. Anna Fisher (Alc) 7-2; 3rd place

Baylee Peterson, Independence, 125 — p. Aeliyha Threed (StMem), 1:59; d. Katelynn Hernandez (NW) 7-3; lost by d. to Monteria Rigsby (Rdl) 3-1; 2nd place

Brooklyn Long, Independence, 140 — p. Hailey Robinson (SulE), 1:22; lost by md. to Jailynn Tindall (Car) 10-1; p. Morgan Cornelius (Grvl), 2:51; d. Brette Spink (NW) 5-0; 3rd place

Girls team scores — Northwest 70.0; Clarksville 63.0; Tullahoma 62.0; Rossview 51.0; Collierville 50.0; Independence 48.0; Creek Wood 43.0; Greeneville 31.0; Hardin Valley 26.0; Montgomery Central 26.0; Farragut 25.5; Bartlett 25.0; Carter 25.0; Dickson Co. 25.0; Heritage 24.0; Jefferson Co. 24.0; Riverdale 24.0; Clarksville Acad. 22.0; Alcoa 21.0; Cane Ridge 20.0; McGavock 20.0; Sale Creek 20.0; Gibbs 19.0; LaVergne 18.0; Hillsboro 16.0; Brentwood 14.0; Siegel 14.0; Union Co. 14.0; Bearden 13.0; David Crockett 13.0; Sevier Co. 13.0; Cheatham Co. 12.0; Coffee Co. 11.0; Stone Memorial 11.0; Northeast 9.0; Science Hill 7.0; Sullivan East 7.0; Summit 7.0; Chuckey-Doak 6.0; Chattanooga Central 4.0; Fairview 4.0; Baylor 0.0; Bradley Central 0.0; East Nashville 0.0; Sequatchie Co. 0.0; Seymour 0.0; West Greene 0.0; William Blount 0.0

Photos by Charles Pulliam / Williamson Herald

Wrestlers play ‘weight-ing’ game; state tourney delayed

By Maurice Patton

It’s easy for Pete Miller to say postponing the state wrestling tournament a week – as the Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association announced Monday – is not a ‘concern’.

“I’m not one of the ones having to hold my weight,” the Summit coach said after the TSSAA rescheduled the three-day event, originally set to start Thursday, for Feb. 24-26 at the Chattanooga Convention Center.

The decision was based on the expectation of continued inclement weather as this week progresses, making travel for teams from across the state a challenge.

“A significant portion of our state has been impacted by snow and ice making travel extremely hazardous and, in some cases, impossible,” TSSAA officials said in an afternoon release.

“Temperatures in Middle and West Tennessee are not expected to reach freezing over the next couple of days so it is unlikely that conditions will improve this week. Additional ice and snow is in the forecast for these areas on Wednesday and Thursday, which makes it very likely that many participating schools would not be able to attend.”

As rescheduled, the Class A/AA tournament will take place on Feb. 24, followed by the Division II and girls tournaments on Feb. 25 and the Class AAA event on Feb. 26.

Summit 103-pounder Nevaeh Brinson and the Independence trio of Rylee Lent (103), Baylee Peterson (125) and Brooklyn Long (140) will be in action on Feb. 25, with a total of 13 wrestlers from Independence, Spring Hill and Summit slated to compete on the final day.

“They’re making us be patient,” said Miller, who advanced nine – seven Region 7-AAA titlists and two runners-up – into the tournament. “I don’t think it’s a concern. I think we continue the process of what we’ve done, fine-tune, heal up, and don’t overanalyze.

“I completely understand the call. At least we’re going to have a state tournament.”

Staying on weight and in condition is a concern Spring Hill coach Beau Moss expressed for 120-pound senior Isaiah Brooks – especially considering the starts and stops that the Raiders endured over the course of their pandemic-plagued season.

“We were kind of getting into a groove, a set routine,” Moss said. “Breaking that routine or cycle worries me. The positive might be that we get that much more conditioning in, that much more work, so maybe that’ll even out.

“I guess that’s the unknown for everybody. We’ll adjust and have as much practice time with him as we can. We’re ready to go regardless, but that was a curveball the weather threw at us.”

Prior to the announcement that the tournament would be postponed, tournament brackets were posted. Brooks will open against Wilson Central senior Thomas Borders, a two-time state champion and a three-time medalist at 113.

Meanwhile, Summit 120-pounder Jackson Masters – one three Spartan wrestlers making their third state tourney appearance — will face Zachary Teaster of Heritage in the Round of 16.

Masters, his junior classmate Ryan Smith at 285 and senior 138-pounder Austin Noll lead a contingent all looking for their first state medals. Smith has beaten two of the four returning state medalists in his bracket, Oakland’s Graham Keating and Wilson Central’s Jesse Richardson.

“We’ve got nine guys that haven’t placed, but nine guys that are champing at the bit to prove themselves,” Miller said. “We’ve just got to step up and continue to do what we do.

“We’ve got guys that focus on match No. 1.”

Nine Spartans, three Eagles and a Raider all state-bound

By Maurice Patton

THOMPSONS STATION – It would be hard – perhaps impossible – to find a wrestler that successfully navigated a tougher path a berth in this year’s Class AAA state tournament than Jarvis Little.

The Summit freshman defeated 2020 state medalist Owen Gobel of Franklin in Saturday’s semifinals, then three-time medalist Chris Calvin of McGavock in the 113-pound championship to earn his spot in next weekend’s 16-man bracket.

“I expected to win,” Little said after his 5-4 championship decision over Calvin was named the tournament’s best match and he was named outstanding wrestler in the lower weight classes.

“When I looked at my bracket, I saw Gobel and thought, that’s just another kid I’ve got to beat to get to the finals. Once I beat him (7-6), I saw Calvin and I thought, this kid’s good, but I think I’m better. I’ve just got to get my takedowns and I can win the match.”

Trailing 4-2 in the third period, Little picked up a stalling point in the match’s late stages and managed to reverse Calvin just before the buzzer for the one-point decision.

“All year, I’ve worked on my takedowns, getting wrist control, … I’ve been perfecting my bottom work so no one can hold me down.”

Little is one of Summit’s seven region titlists, as the Spartans totaled 277.5 points to win the team championship.

“These guys love to compete,” Summit coach Pete Miller said. “They love each other and they love to compete. They’re in each other’s corners, they’re grabbing each other when they lose and they’re celebrating together when they win.

“Jarvis showed up. He’s a tough kid. His mental and physical toughness has jumped through the roof, and that’s contagious. He has definitely made a huge stride and jump in that process.”

Led by their seven champions, the Spartans will take nine wrestlers to the state tournament on Feb. 20 in Chattanooga. Independence, meanwhile, advanced three – 106-pounder Russell Ford, 160-pound Tanner Willett and 182-pound Gabriel Hall, each of whom won region titles Saturday.

“In a normal year, we would have gotten six,” Eagles coach Bryan Youngsma said, referring to the top four finishers at each weight that have typically moved on to state competition. “That makes it tough. But that can be said for everybody. That’s a circumstantial thing we can’t control.

“I think we let some points get away from us in the placing rounds, but overall, I couldn’t be more proud of these guys. I wouldn’t want to go through a season like this with anybody else. They’ve been fun to watch, fun to be around. They’ve made my life a whole lot easier.”

Spring Hill senior Isaiah Brooks and his team struggled through the season as well, but the 120-pounder became the third Raider in four years to clinch a state tourney berth with his win over Brentwood’s Cole Moss for a true second place.

With a 49-second pin Saturday, Spring Hill senior 120-pounder Isaiah Brooks became the program’s third state tournament qualifier in four years. (Video by Maurice Patton / SM-Tn Sports)

“I had to make sure when I went in there, my mind was focused on the right thing,” said Brooks, whose only loss of the tournament was to Summit’s Jackson Masters in the championship finals. “I went in being aggressive, with the right type attitude. I put in the energy and the work, and I got good results.

“The state tournament was something I’ve worked all year for. I wanted to end this senior year doing good. We’ve had a tough year.”

Brooks joins Tyler Moore (2018) and Andrew Bramlett (2020) as state qualifiers since Spring Hill began its program.

“With the COVID and the region we’re in, with 17 teams, I feel like any startup (team) getting anybody through – even with four (qualifiers) – is tough,” Raiders coach Beau Moss said. “We knew Isaiah had the ability to do it. He just had to follow through with it.

“He wrestled the way he likes to wrestle. He likes to get those underhooks, look for cowcatchers and sling people around. Upper-body, that’s his game, but he’s also learned how to deal with being on the bottom and … look for opportunities to get his offense.”

Brooks was one of five championship runners-up that successfully defended their state tourney berth against challenges from third-place finishers in nine true second-place matchups.

“We hated to look ahead, but we knew with that style of wrestler, and we knew who he was, we might have a scenario where we’d use that as motivation,” Moss said of the loss to Masters. “That’s what we did. We took that loss and turned it into fire.

“There was motivation, no doubt.”

The Class AAA state tournament will be held at the Chattanooga Convention Center, following the Class A/AA tourney on Thursday and the Division II and girls tournaments on Friday.

Junior Lion just misses: Columbia Central 152-pound junior Tay Cofer placed third Saturday at the Region 5-AAA Tournament at Warren County, rallying from an opening-round pin with a pair of victories – one in overtime – and a forfeit before falling just short of a state tourney berth. Coffee County’s Gavin Prather pinned Cofer in a true second match.

Central’s Nathan Neely went 1-2 at 160, while Jeremy Bendermon split four matches at 170. At 220, Jaylen McCoy lost twice by pin.

Team scores: Summit 277.5; Brentwood 176; Franklin 174; Page 170.5; Independence 164; Ravenwood 117; Centennial 111; McGavock 63; Overton 62.5; Spring Hill 47; Hillwood 40; Dickson Co. 33.5; Hillsboro 28; Hunters Lane 21; Cane Ridge 17; Glencliff 8

Championship finals results (followed, where applicable, by true second-place results): 106 – Russell Ford (Ind) tf. Zach Ordonez (Bwd) 16-0; Ordonez d. Lucas Martin (Hwd) 7-2; 113 – Jarvis little (Sum) d. Chris Calvin 5-4; Owen Gobel (Fkn) p. Calvin, 4:25; 120 – Jackson Masters (Sum) p. Isaiah Brooks (SH), 4:51; Brooks p. Cole Moss (Bwd), 0:49; 126 – Justin Noll (Sum) p. Arash Yazdani (Bwd), 6:11; Yazdani d. Timothy Ford (Ind) 4-2; 132 – Landon Desselle (Sum) p. Spencer Kon (Ind), 4:24; Grant Hawkinson (Page) md. Kon 9-0; 138 – Austin Noll (Sum) md. Clark Vaughn (Bwd) 10-2; 145 – Drew Dodson (Rvd) d. Collins Fiscus (Page) 6-4; 152 – Alex Ables (Cent) p. Finley Jameson (Sum), 2:50; Jameson p. Maverick Marmol (Ind), 0:42; 160 – Tanner Willett (Ind) md. Luis Herrera (McG) 14-5; Rylan Schroeder (Fkn) p. Herrera, 2:56; 170 – Will Parcel (Page) md. Luke Justice (Sum) 12-4; Justice p. Sawyer Robinson (Fkn), 6:58; 182 – Gabriel Hall (Ind) p. Daniel Helton, 5:03; 195 – Maddox Reed (Sum) d. Jack Mundt 3-2; 220 – Mitchell Lambert (Page) p. Hassan Mizoury (Ovt), 0:58; 285 – Ryan Smith (Sum) p. Carter Miller (Rvd), 0:30; Fisher Anderson (Fkn) p. Miller, 0:15

Best match – 113, Jarvis Little (Sum) d. Chris Calvin (McG) 5-4; Best wrestler – Jarvis Little, Summit, 113; Alex Ables, Centennial, 152

Photos by Charles Pulliam / Williamson Herald