Wrestling team prepares for county tournament


Jordin Baker

Sophomore Josh Moore (top) and junior Justin Tracy (bottom) practice after school on Dec. 11.

Logan Zrebiec, Reporter

On Saturday Dec. 16, Southport  wrestling will be competing against other schools in Marion County and also Metropolitan Interscholastic Conference (MIC) schools in the Marion County Invitational. The last time SHS had a wrestler come close to winning county was in 2015 when graduate Robert Clark came in second place in the 195 pound weight class.

“It’s a big deal,¨ senior Gage Higgs said. “Everyone is fighting to win the Marion County championship.”

For this season, Higgs has moved up to wrestle in the 195 pound weight class, which is one weight class above his normal 182 pound class. Higgs went up to 195 because, according to him, his coaches think it’s better for him. With his overall record being 11-1, Higgs is looking like he could possibly make a run deep into the tournament.

According to assistant coach Sean Schmaltz, the week of practice leading up to tournament consisted of the first few days working harder, focusing on repetition of technique and conditioning while the last couple days was focusing on cutting weight, for the wrestlers that needed to. Some of the wrestlers took it to themselves to make sure they are 100% prepared for the tournament.

“(On the morning of Dec. 12) I woke up around 5 a.m. and ran for about 45 minutes,’senior wrestler Dayton Fries said. “I’m making sure I am eating and drinking right and practicing hard.”

Sophomore Josh Moore has also taken it upon  himself to make sure he is prepared by working out on his own and doing what he can at practice to make himself better. Moore has wrestled varsity both years of his high school career. Moore, having one of the better records on the team at 14-4, hopes to do better this year after drawing and losing to the champion in the first round last year.

“I drew the champ first round so it was kind of hard to overcome that,” Moore said.

Fries believes that Roncalli High School, Perry Meridian High School and Warren Central High School are going to be the powerhouses at the tournament tomorrow, but head coach Albert Skinner only sees Perry and Warren as a big threat.

“I don’t think (Roncalli has) as many horses in the barn as Perry or Warren,”Skinner said.

The Marion County Invitational is set to start at 9 a.m. at Warren Central.