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Four teams host area duals

By Brian Paglia

bpaglia@news-daily.com

The duals state meet is the first chance for a state title in the high school wrestling season, and the first step toward one begins today.

Four Southern Crescent schools will be hosting their respective area duals meets today and Saturday. Luella will compete in the Area 2-AAAAA meet at M.L. King.

Here's a quick look at each of the local area duals meets:

Area 3-AAAA

Where: Union Grove

Team to beat: Union Grove

Other contenders: Ola, Whitewater

Wrestlers to watch: Alcovy -- Biohmo Karmo (152); Harris County -- Tyler Denova (135); Ola -- Billy Abrahamson (119); Union Grove -- Griffin Higginbotham (103), Alex Lazor (135), Jared Vinson (145).

What to know: Union Grove has won seven straight area duals titles.

Area 4-AAAA

Where: Mundy's Mill

Team to beat: Lovejoy

Other contenders: Mundy's Mill

Wrestlers to watch: Lovejoy -- Corey Alexander (145), Gio Ortiz (140), David Washington (285), Cassius Williams (112); Mundy's Mill -- James Thomas (215).

What to know: Expect a repeat of the Area 4-AAAAA duals championship match in 2009 between Lovejoy and Mundy's Mill, which the Wildcats dominated.

Area 4-AAA

Where: Henry County

Team to beat: Henry County

Other contenders: Locust Grove, Eastside

Wrestlers to watch: Eastside -- Jarrell Crowder (285); Henry County -- Bruce James (112), Jake Orozco (130), Dalvin Tomlinson (285), Brett Yarbrough (119); Locust Grove -- Zack Brown (152), Blake Sorrows (160), Bryan Sorrows (145).

What to know: Henry County and Locust Grove are both considered Top 5 teams in Class AAA

Area 4-A

Where: Eagle's Landing Christian

Team to beat: Bremen

Other contenders: Landmark Christian, Bowdon

Wrestlers to watch: Bremen -- Zack Young (103), Ryne Eriquezzo (135), Joe Bexley (285).

What to know: Bremen swept both the Class A duals and traditional state meets last season, and return nine starters this season, including reigning state champs Young and Eriquezzo. Bowdon placed fourth at the state duals.