A Fan's Guide to Georgia 4A-A Sectional Tournament at West Laurens High School
We are excited to once again bring you "A Fan's Guide" to the GHSA Sectional Tournaments that are taking place this coming weekend across Georgia. We are disappointed that the GHSA did not allow southeastwrestling.com to cover any of the events. As a result, we are unable to provide any pics or follow-up coverage after each sectional tournament. Regardless, we are pleased to provide the casual fan an insiders look into each bracket and what may (or may not) happen over the course of the weekend. We make no predictions about who will win or qualify for next week's state tournament. For each weight class we provide a few bulletpoints to watch and then a copy of the bracket (which you can see for yourself on trackwrestling.com). Each weight class features:
- Favorite: Our favorite to win the weight class based on this past season and past performance.
- Contenders: A list of wrestlers that should challenge the favorite for the top step on the podium.
- Best 1st round match: The match we believe will be the closest during the 1st round of action.
- Darkhorse: A wrestler that did not finish 1st or 2nd in his/her area, but has all the tools to knock off everyone and take the top step.
- Predicted Finals Match: Obviously who we believe will be in the finals.
NOTE: SQ = 2015 State Qualifier; 1st = 2015 State Champ; 2nd = 2015 State Runner-up, etc.
- Burke County
- New Hampstead
- West Laurens
- Windsor Forest
- Eagles Landing
- Henry County
- Locust Grove
- Mt Zion, Jonesboro
- Walnut Grove
- Arabia Mountain
- Cross Keys
- St Pius X
- Stone Mountain
- Johnson, Gainesville
- Madison County
- Monroe Area
- North Hall
- North Oconoee
- Stephens County
- White County
- Favorite: Logan Ashton (Buford) - Area 8 Champion
- Ricardo Romero (Locust Grove) - Area 4 Champion
- Jake Boyd (Marist) - Area 6 Champion
- Jared Herrera (West Laurens) - Area 3 Champion
- Best 1st Round Match: Jaquante McLaughlin vs. Matt Glenn
- Darkhorse: William Ponder (Walnut Grove)
- Finals: Romero vs. Ashton
- Summary: No returning State Qualifiers, but keep an eye on Logan Ashton. He is legit and could be fighting for the top step on the podium next weekend ... in any classification. Don't know much about the rest of the field. Obviously keep an eye on the Area Champions ... Romero, Boyd, and Herrera.
- Favorite: Andrew Pace (Marist) - Area 6 Champion
- Anthony Thomas (Eastside) - SQ @ 106
- Logan McGowan (West Laurens)
- Kyle McCullough (Buford)
- Mike Rietrib (North Hall) - SQ @ 113
- Best 1st Round Match: Ryan Miller vs. Patrick Jackson
- Darkhorse: Ryan Miller (Madison County) - SQ @ 106
- Finals: Thomas vs. Pace
- Summary: Pace is easily the man to beat in the bracket. Thomas, Miller, Rietrib are all returning State Qualifiers and each is on the top side of the bracket. Be sure to catch the Jackson vs. Miller opening round match. On the bottom side, keep an eye on McCullough, Harkins, and Alejandro. Don't be surprised if West Laurens' Logan McGowan knocks off the top side and is opposite Pace on Saturday evening.
- Favorite: Cody Bond (Madison County) - 1st @ 113
- Augie Rodriguez (Locust Grove) - 4th @ 113
- Carlos Goodman (Redan) - Area 6 Champion
- Cory Garrison (White County) - SQ @ 120
- Evan Stokes (West Laurens) - Area 3 Champion
- Best 1st Round Match: Max Tewksbury vs. John Pedraza
- Darkhorse: John Pedraza (North Hall)
- Finals: Bond vs. Garrison
- Summary: The 2 best in the weight class, Rodriguez and Bond, are on the same side of the bracket ... assuming they both make the semifinal round - be sure to catch that match (it could be a preview of the state finals next weekend). White County's Cory Garrison returns after qualifying for the 2015 State Tournament and should be the man to beat on the bottom side of the bracket based on previous experience. We know little about Goodman or Stokes, the 2 area champs on the bottom side, but both should make a run based on their performance last weekend.
- Favorite: Reed Bethune (Marist) - 6th @ 113
- David Baros (Locust Grove) - Area 4 Champion
- Matt Jenkins (White County) - Area 8 Champion
- Dakeeton Brown (Burke County) - Area 3 Champion
- Best 1st Round Match: Davis Kirkland vs. Nathan Campbell
- Darkhorse: Nathan Campbell (Howard)
- Finals: Bethune vs. Baros
- Summary: A little in the dark on this bracket ... Reed Bethune is a returning State Placer, but everyone else is fairly new (meaning they may have wrestled in last year's Sectional Tournament, but we cannot find anyone else that qualified for the State Tournament). Obviously keep an eye on the Area Champs and watch Bethune in the bottom quarter of the bracket.
- Favorite: Blake Beasley (West Laurens) - 3rd @ 113
- Josh Swope (Walnut Grove) - Area 4 Champion
- Bimysola Attobra (Lithonia) - SQ @ 145
- David Sprague (North Oconoee) - SQ @ 120
- Grey Bethune (Marist) SQ @ 120
- Best 1st Round Match: Stevonta Jones vs. Corey Kindel
- Darkhorse: Corey Kindel
- Finals: Attobra vs. Beasley
- Summary: Very good weight class that is headlined by returning State Placer Blake Beasley. The bottom side of the bracket is tough with Beasley, David Sprague, Grey Bethune, and Dominick Forest. Keep an eye on the potential quarterfinal bout between Sprague and Bethune. The path is much more open on the top side of the bracket. Attobra is the only returning wrestler with State Tournament experience, but he should face a tough Ethan Ceren of Buford in the quarters and then Swope, Jones or Kindel in the semifinals. Overall this should be a fairly competitive bracket with some good wrestling.
- Favorite: Marvin Cunningham (Chestatee) - 3rd @ 138
- Noah Savage (Eastside) - SQ @ 132
- Trent Feguson (Buford) - 1st @ 138
- Riunte Demmons (West Laurens) - Area 3 Champion
- Khyree Alexander (Arabia Mountain) - Area 6 Champion
- Best 1st Round Match: Justin Broughton vs. Jake Murray
- Darkhorse: Jake Murray (Stephens County) - SQ @ 132
- Finals: Ferguson vs. Cunningham
- Summary: It isn't often that you see a returning State Champion in a #2 Area spot on the bracket ... but when Cunningham beat Ferguson last week in the Area 8 finals. Anyway Cunningham and Ferguson will likely met again this Saturday night, and perhaps next Saturday night as well. Ferguson doesn't have the easiest road to the finals with returning State Qualifiers Noah Savage and Jake Murray as well as Area 3 Champion Ruinte Demmons joining him on the top side. Cunningham should easily handle the bottom side.
- Favorite: Jack Barber (Buford) - 3rd @ 132
- William Ray (Walnut Grove) - SQ @ 138
- Max Spearman (St Pius X) - SQ @ 132
- Matthew McClellan (Chestatee) - 3rd @ 145
- Will Johnson (West Laurens) - SQ @ 138
- Best 1st Round Match: Jacob Brescia vs. Jay Stowe
- Darkhorse: Jay Stowe (Stephens County)
- Finals: McClellan vs. Barber
- Summary: The Area 8 finals must have been a blast to watch (and not just at this weight). Don't be surprised if it is again McClellan vs. Barber for the top step. McClellan will need to beat a series of State Qualifiers to make that happen again this weekend. Don't sleep on Stephens County's Jay Stowe in the top quarter ... you don't take 3rd to Barber and McClellan and don't believe you have a chance to get to the finals. On the bottom side Barber will likely need to beat returning State Qualifier Will Johnson of West Laurens to advance to the finals. Overall a good weight class with potential fireworks throughout the weekend.
- Favorite: Ben Deal (West Laurens) - 2nd @ 126
- Jacob O'Neal (Locust Grove) - Area 4 Champion
- Cooper Roberts (Buford) - Area 8 Champion
- Trea Terry (New Hampstead) - SQ @ 145
- Max Blanchard (Marist) - Area 6 Champion
- Matt Malcolm (Eastside) - SQ @ 138
- Best 1st Round Match: Deshaun Bailey vs. Willis Tolbert
- Darkhorse: Willis Tolbert (Burke County) - SQ @ 145
- Finals: Terry vs. Deal
- Summary: All of the State Tournament experience in this bracket comes from Area 3. Deal is a returning State Runner-up at 126 and Tolbert and Terry both advanced (and won matches) at the 2015 State Tournament. Can the Area Champs on the top side (O'Neal and Roberts) hold off Tolbert and Terry? Deal looks like he should roll through the bottom side of the bracket ... keep an eye on the bottom quarter with Blanchard and Malcolm.
- Favorite: Michael Carew (North Hall) - 1st @ 145
- Hunter Flemming (Locust Grove) - Area 4 Champion
- Zack Ramirez (St Pius X) - 6th @ 152
- Cameron Butler (West Laurens) - 5th @ 152
- Best 1st Round Match: Tristan Bozoian vs. Sean Hill
- Darkhorse: Sean Hill (Jonesboro)
- Finals: Carew vs. Butler
- Summary: Not the deepest weight class in the sectional, but one that features 3 returning medalists from a season ago. It would be a surprise to see anyone but Michael Carew of North Hall in the finals from the top side of the bracket. The bottom features a few closer matches, but ultimately it should come down to Zack Ramirez and Cameron Butler. I don't know if they have met this season, but based on past results we have given Butler the nod. Ramirez looked very good at the Prep Slam and it wouldn't surprise us at all if he was opposite Carew on Saturday evening.
- Favorite: Jack Marsh (St Pius X) - 5th @ 160
- Champ Leddon (Locust Grove) - Area 4 Champion
- Jaime Arroyo (Chestatee) - 3rd @ 182
- Ty Kight (West Laurens) - 6th @ 170
- Nick Whitmore (North Hall) - SQ @ 160
- Best 1st Round Match: Jaylon Odom vs. Jacob Daniell
- Darkhorse: Jacob Daniell (Monroe Area)
- Finals: Marsh vs. Whitmire
- Summary: A great weight class from a fan's perspective. You have an unbeaten wrestler in Champ Leddon, but he has no 2015 experience to vault him to the favorite spot. You have a 3rd place finisher at 182 in last year's State Tournament who finished 2nd in his area, you have a returning State Placer, Jack Marsh, who finished 5th at 160 and that is all on the top side of the bracket. Add in a State Placer, Ty Kight, State Qualifier, Nick Whitmire, and a few others on the bottom side and you a recipe for some good action.
- Favorite: Isaiah Hale (North Hall) - 3rd @ 170
- Tyler Mobley (Locust Grove) - Area 4 Champion
- Isaac Alarcon (Chestatee) - SQ @ 170
- Austin Fuller (Howard) - Area 3 Champion
- Robert Larmore (Marist) - 6th @ 182
- Levi Leach (Walnut Grove) - SQ @ 182
- Best 1st Round Match: Nehemiah Parker vs. Jordan Wiley
- Darkhorse: Jordan Wiley (Madison County)
- Finals: Alarcon vs. Hale
- Summary: The two best wrestlers end up on the same side once again ... Hale and Larmore are the only two returning State Placers in the bracket and they are both on the bottom side. Leach of Walnut Grove, a 2015 State Qualifier, joins them but the battle should come down to Larmore and Hale in the semifinals. On the top side we have 2 Area Champions that did not qualify a season ago and Isaac Alarcon that lost to Hale in last week's Area 8 tournament. Keep an eye on the Mobley/Alarcon match with the winner likely needing to beat Howard's Austin Fuller to advance.
- Favorite: JaQuan Stinson (Howard) - 3rd @ 195
- Heath Dickerson (Locust Grove) - Area 4 Champion
- Darrien Ingram (North Hall) - 6th @ 195
- Kellen Haynes (St Pius X) - Area 6 Champion
- Jack Ness (Buford) - 4th @ 182
- Best 1st Round Match: Chandler Mullis vs. Stephen Kreyenbuhl
- Darkhorse: Stephen Kreyenbuhl (North Oconoee) - SQ @ 195
- Finals: Ingram vs. Stinson
- Summary: Yet anothr example of the best wrestlers in the weight class being on the same side of the bracket. Ness beat State Placer Ingram and State Qualifier Kreyenbuhl to take the Area 8 title and Stinson, 3rd at 195 in 2015, beat Chandler Mullis of West Laurens to take the Area 3 title. Stinson and Ness are best in the bracket and they will likely face one another Saturday morning. The quarterfinals on the top side should be very competitive.
- Favorite: Eric Long (St Pius X) - 4th @ 220
- Monex Charles (Hampton) - 5th @ 195
- Randy Galvan (North Hall) - SQ @ 220
- Michael Farmer (Burke County) - Area 3 Champion
- Best 1st Round Match: Daniel Allen vs. Quentin Skinner
- Darkhorse: Simeon Rogers (Arabia Mountain) - SQ @ 220
- Finals: Long vs. Galvan
- Summary: For the 3rd time in a row we have the 2 best wrestlers on the same side of the bracket. State Placers Monex Charles and Eric Long should be wrestling in the finals on Saturday night, but it looks like they will battle it out Saturday morning. Given the way the brackets have been drawn in 4A Section A ... you will want to catch the semifinals (in many weight classes they may feature the 2 best wrestlers). That isn't to take anything away from Randy Galvan, Malik Paris, Michael Farmer, Tyree Leonard and Simeon Rogers. The bottom bracket should be very entertaining.
- Favorite: Dakota Cox (Walnut Grove) - SQ @ 285
- Joseph Horne (West Laurens) - Area 3 Champion
- DJ Pinkard (Buford) - Area 8 Champion
- Gabriel Howard (Howard) - SQ @ 220
- Nylan Washington (Arabia Mountain) - Area 6 Champion
- Best 1st Round Match: Lee McWaters vs. Brandon Dixon
- Darkhorse: Brandon Dixon (New Hampstead)
- Finals: Cox vs. Pinkard
- Summary: Wide open weight class. Dakota Cox is the only one in the field (from what we saw) that has State Tournament experience. Keep an eye on West Laurens Joseph Horne and be sure to catch the 3rd quarterfinal bout (likely between Pinkard and Howard). The bottom quarter of the bracket could be interesting.