Lyons, GA. – February 2, 2023 | Coach Todd Allen
The MatDawgs played host to 15 teams at The Paul Thigpen Sweet Onion Invitational this past weekend. A two-day tournament intended to be a late preparation tournament for the individual postseason led to the MatDawgs posting a 6th place finish as a team and one individual champion. The individual champion was none other than senior standout, Tank Morris at the 190 lb. weight class. Tank Morris rattled off an impressive four victories in a row to solidify the 1st place finish. The MatDawgs posted another seven top 6 placements at the tournament: Sam Register- 3rd, Cameron Spivey- 4th, Robert Bruce Agzigian- 3rd, Mike Jones-4th, Gailan Wilds- 5th, Hayden Roy- 4th, and Brock Nobles- 6th. “This was a great tournament as a final gauge to see where our guys are late in the season. We saw some issues our guys were having and some things we have to fix before we head into their individual runs. Overall, it was a great learning experience moving forward.”, Coach Allen said of the tournament experience.
The champion at each weight class of the tournament earned a large custom belt buckle as their championship award (See image of championship award below). This created a unique buzz throughout the tournament as the athlete’s passed the awards table to see their potential prizes. “We decided to hand out belt buckles as the championship awards to give the wrestlers a unique prize to earn. We hope it entices more teams to come as an incentive to shoot for.”, noted Coach Allen. The tournament also offered trophies for the top three teams overall. Lowndes High School earned the top spot with 247.5 points, while Coffee County and West Laurens tied for runner-ups with 186 points. “I knew our team would struggle on the team side. Some of the heavy hitters in our starting lineup just needed to rest up and heal some bumps and bruises that have been nagging them. Despite that we had several guys still step up and compete hard, which was great to see for our program’s future.”, said Coach Allen
The next stop for the MatDawgs marks the first step in the postseason run as Toombs County hosts the GHSA Area 3-AA Traditional Tournament. Wrestling will begin this Saturday, February 4th at 10:00 am. Our ladies also begin their individual journey as they head to Effingham County on Friday for their GHSA Area 1 (All-Division) Traditional Championships where wrestling begins at 11:00 am.