Wrestlers Ready To Defend Grant 4 Title

Posted on December 20, 2015 in Winter Sports, Wrestling

Junior Owen Perkins wrestles vs. Taylor

Junior Owen Perkins wrestles vs. Taylor

Chuck Landis
While Eastbrook hosts the Grant Four Invitational wrestling meet Monday evening, it will be Oak Hill looking to defend its championship.
The Golden Eagles have won 20 of the last 21 tournaments and their dominance extends even farther with 40 titles over the last 42 years. The Eagles also return six of their nine individual champions from last year’s meet.
Eastbrook takes its turn at hosting the meet, which had been at Oak Hill for years but now is part of a rotation with the other county schools. Wrestling begins at 6 p.m. with the Eagles against Mississinewa and Madison-Grant against Eastbrook. In the second round, the Indians face the Argylls and the Eagles face the Panthers, and in the third round the Eagles meet the Argylls and the Panthers meet the Indians.
Last year, Oak Hill won all three matches decisively while Eastbrook was 2-1, Mississinewa 1-2 and Madison-Grant 0-3.
“We just want to take things one step at a time,” Oak Hill coach Andrew King said. “We are going to look at all three of the dual meets as different dual meets and focus on each one individually.
“We are probably the favorites going into it, but we are just going to have to wrestle and see what happens,” King added.
The Eagles lost two individual champions to graduation, Breighton Mullinix (160 pounds) and Brock Biddle (195), while another did not return. Returning champ Owen Perkins remains at heavyweight, but the other five have moved up at least one weight class.
Travis Davenport makes the jump from 113 to 126 pounds in pursuit of another Grant Four title, and Cole Ridgeway (120) and Noah King (170) also moved up two classes. Zach Gunter (132) and Brody Hardcastle (152) moved up one weight class from last year.
Eastbrook has three of its four Grant Four champions from last year: Christian Bratcher, Will Bratcher and Luke Elliott. Christian Bratcher won at 132 pounds but has moved up to 145 this season, and Elliott has jumped from 170 to 182. The two shared most valuable wrestler honors at the Nov. 21 Elwood Super 6 tournament, and both won their weight classes in the Dec. 12 Western Invitational that included Oak Hill and Marion.
Nine of last year’s 14 individual champions are back. Other wrestlers to watch are Oak Hill’s J.C. Herring at 106 and Blaney Harrison at 160 and Eastbrook’s Jackson Bush at 195, all three champions at the Western Invitational.
Oak Hill is 3-0 in dual meets this season and won the Western Invitational team title.
“We have been looking solid so far this season and we are looking forward to wrestling on Monday,” King said.

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