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Thursday September 3rd, 2015 11:11AM

Wrestling round-up: Commerce, Banks, Jefferson claim area crowns

By Staff
Commerce continued its dominant season, Banks County got a measure of revenge over Buford, and Jefferson once again reigned supreme on Saturday in their respective area traditional tournaments.

The Tigers claimed nine first place finishes and sent 13 wrestlers to next week's state sectionals en route to the Area 4-A crown.

"Our guys wrestled the best I've seen all year, and I hope we're peaking at the right time," Commerce coach Kendall Love said. "I had worried a little because of missing a few days of practice this week because of the snow. But our guys responded."

Dalton Flint (106 pounds), Mitchell Patton (113), Austin Brock (120), Cole Chancey (138), Tyreke Wiggins (152), Trent Reddish (160), Greyson Cochran (170), Chance McClure (220) and Derek Benoit (285) each finished as area champions. Michael Patton (132), Dontavious Mosley (182) and Morgan Flint each finished second, while Jake Tate (135) was third.

Each will move on to next week's Class A Eastern Sectionals next weekend at Holy Innocents in Atlanta, where the top four wrestlers in each weight class will progress to the state finals.

"They've got the form right now, hopefully they can all get through next week," Love said.

That sentiment also goes for Banks County and Buford.

After falling to Buford in the state duals championship round, the Leopards bounced back to edge out the Wolves for the area traditional title on Saturday in Elberton.

Banks County claimed three area individual crowns, yet Buford claimed six first place finishes, as Eli Hartley (106), Darius Bunch (120), Jack Barber (126), Brayden Hartley (132), Rudy Guillen (145) and Chip Ness (195) battled their way to the top. Trent Ferguson (138) and Justin Loredo (220) also qualified for sectionals.

"We were kind of disappointed not to win area, but we've been telling our kids it's all about state now," Wolves coach Rob Carlyle said. "We've just got to get back to work. Sectionals will be tough. I think we can get eight guys through to state, but Banks County, of course, and Morgan County, North Hall and Oconee County will all be tough, and we've got to be at our best."

At the Area 4-AA Tournament at Greater Atlanta Christian in Norcross, Jefferson placed 13 of 14 wrestlers in next week's Class AA North Sectionals at Dublin.

The Dragons had eight champions. Price Joiner (113), Chase Piperato (126), two-time defending state champion Tyler Marinelli (138), Jack Dollar (145), bam Little (160), Tradd Porter (182), Desean Lester (195), and Michael Paolozzi (220) all took individual titles.

Ben Kelly (120), Tanner Thurmond (132), and Zack Rhymer (170) finished second for Jefferson. Zack Boobas (152) and Jackson Bowen (285) finished third for the Dragons.

The Dragons finished first overall with 286 points. Social Circle was second with 240 and host GAC took third with 216 points.
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