Wolverine wrestlers off to fast start on mats

From staff reports

In five days, the Union Grove Wolverines defeated two No. 1-ranked teams and three other ranked teams.

On their way to the Swanee Duals title, the Wolverines defeated Class AAAA's No. 7 North Forsyth 54-16, Class AA's No. 10 Dawson Co. 70-0, and in the championship match defeated Class AAA's No. 1 Gilmer 39-30.

Four days later, the Wolverines defeated Class AAAAA's No. 1 Walton 35-27 and Class AAAA's No. 2 Woodland 40-31.

The only blemish on the week for the Wolverines was a 28-33 loss to Class AAAAA's No. 11 Kennesaw Mountain 28-33. Walton, Woodland, and Union Grove all had a few starters out of the lineup.

Several Union Grove wrestlers are doing well this season including Candler Woods (152 pounds) and Rory Harris (145 pounds) who are undefeated at 8-0.

Barry Otwell (119) is also undefeated at 5-0. Wil Carter (171), Adam Cash (189) and Doug Dixon (275) are 7-1. Wes Carter (125), Jake Skelton (130) and Cameron Smith (119) are 5-2.

Carter fell short of a major upset against returning Class AAAA state champion and three-time National All-American Jeremiah Clapp of Woodland. Clapp is also ranked seventh in the nation at 171.

Carter held a 9-4 lead with 10 seconds left before giving up a five-point move and a controversial fall at the buzzer.

"Not only did I think it was a bad call but time had expired as well," Union Grove head coach Joey DiNino said. "I would have loved to see them finish the match in OT."

The match would have gone into overtime if the fall was not called.

"I am elated about the way we have performed so far. We are looking forward to seeing great competition all season," DiNino said.

The Wolverines will travel to Class AAAA power Woodward on Dec. 1 for a tri-meet then travel to Stone Mountain on Dec. 7 for a tri-meet which features Class AAAA No. 1 Ringgold.

The Wolverines play host to the prestigious South Metro Invitational on Dec. 10-11.