Six Bulldogs came to Columbia in search of state titles. Two will come home as state medallist. John Williams and Darion Young battled every match and despite setbacks, they were rewarded with 3rd and 6th place medals respectively.
Day 1 of the state tourney saw every bulldog survive, despite early losses from Young and Jamal White. Both of them would win the first of their wrestle back matches later that evening. Day 2 would prove to be a bigger challenge.
As the morning session of day 2 got underway, the wrestlers were aware the competition levels were going up. Lawrence Woods, Adrian Watson, and Pernell Robinson lost their first matches, but beat their wrestle back opponent in order to fight on in the tournament. Young and Williams won their initial bouts and moved on to the evening session. Jamal White was the first casualty for the Bulldogs. Jamal was able to get his opponent locked up in a cradle, but wasn’t able to put the guy away. His opponent eventually wiggled out and won the match by pinning Jamal. The evening session would prove much more difficult for the Bulldogs. For the 4 Bulldogs in the consolation bracket, their next win would put them in the semi finals and guarantee them a state medal. Young started the session out with a convincing win. But that would be the last of the wins for the Bulldogs that evening. The remaining 4 lost their matches. Woods, Watson, and Robinson were eliminated and Williams moved to the consolation bracket to compete for 3rd place.
As day 3 began, Young and Williams had must win matches to put themselves into the 3rd place match that evening. Young faced Hummer from Savannah High school again. Hummer beat Young in their first match of the tournament. Young was determined to not let that happen again. However Darion was unable to defeat Hummer. The loss pushed Darion down to the 5th place match. In the finals, Darion faced Cameron and lost after hurting his knee landing after being tossed. He is bringing home a 6th place medal. William’s match had him facing Jackson of Oak Grove. William’s stinging loss in his previous match renewed his focus and drive and hardened his resolve to end his last 2 high school matches getting his hand raised. At the end of the first match, Williams won by pin in the second period. The win secured his spot in the 3rd place match. In his finals match, John faced off against an opponent from Logan Rog High School, whom John had already beaten once this tournament. John won in convincing style, giving him 3rd in the state tournament. John finishes his high school career as a 2 time finalist and with a 3rd place finish.
This was a season of ups and downs, struggles and success. From an undefeated conference championship to 2 state medalists, this season is in the books. It is one to build on and continues to shine a bright light on the future of the MSB Bulldog wrestling team.