The SMHS wrestling team opened its season last Tuesday at Hixson High School in Chattanooga. The Panthers went 1-1, beating Sale Creek (60-6) and losing to Hixson (18-52).
Sale Creek had numerous forfeits, so it was an easy win for the Panthers. Conner Heavilon, Connor Crockett and Dakota Karge each had first period pins.
“Crockett is a rookie currently in the starting spot at 170. He is coming along very well and we hope to see big things from him in the future,” said SMHS Coach Brian Parker.
The Panthers were only able to pull out four wins against A-AA powerhouse Hixson.
Cody McCarl got a pin at 113 pounds. Patrick Guinn received a forfeit at 182 pounds. Justin Johnson and Dakota Karge both won by regular decisions at 195 and 220 pounds respectively. Connor Heavilon and Joel Hernandez lost very close matches at 145 and 160.
“I thought we wrestled OK considering our opponent. Our rookies got some good experience. Conner Heavilon wrestled a tough match but conditioning was a factor in the end. Joel doesn’t look like a rookie at all. His match was very close with an experienced kid. I am excited to see what he can do this season. Justin and Dakota both wrestled strong and wore their opponents out. They will be a big part of the backbone of this team,” added Parker.
“Hixson is always very tough. They have a great middle school program that feeds them and they have been in the top three in A-AA for the last eight years. We always wrestle this match at the first of the season so our kids can see where they need to strive to be,” Parker added.
Wrestler of the Week
The Petro’s Wrestler of the Week for the week of Nov. 25 is Dakota Karge. Karge had a pin against Sale Creek and a decision against a tough Hixson opponent last Tuesday. He will receive a free Petro and drink from the wrestling sponsor.
“Dakota is motivated this year and is starting the season strong. He is starting to use technique that he hasn’t used in the past and I think he is going to have a very good year,” Parker concluded.
Schedule: The Panthers return to the mat at 5:30 tonight at Knox Bearden against Bearden and South-Doyle and will return to Knoxville Friday and Saturday to compete in the Knox Catholic Invitational.