After finishing as Class A Region Duals runner-up, the Social Circle wrestling team improved their record to 26-7 at last weekend’s Class A Area 2 Region Duals Tournament hosted by Riverside Military Academy in Gainesville.
The nine schools competing for the coveted two spots that continue on to the State Duals this Friday and Saturday in Macon were Commerce, Social Circle, Washington-Wilkes, Athens Christian, Wesleyan, First Presbyterian, George Walton Academy, Riverside Military and Georgia Military. The top three seeds were Commerce, Social Circle and Washington-Wilkes with those seeds holding true.
The Redskins knocked off Riverside Military 50-22 in the quarter finals, then Washington-Wilkes 45-30 in the semis before losing a well fought finals match to Commerce 36-25. “I knew we had a shot to win the region this year. It would have been nice to win it all, but I felt we wrestled a great tournament. I am happy that we qualified for team state,” said head coach Randy Prater.
Of the 47 schools that make up the single A classification in Georgia, there are only eight schools remaining (the top 2 from each area) from the four class A area duals. The 8 team double elimination bracket is set. The four area champions — Bremen (1), Holy Innocents (2), Commerce (3), and Telfair (4) are seeded. The four remaining schools (Social Circle, Gordon Lee, Mount Zion, and Turner High School) which were the runner-ups of each area do not get seeded. They are drawn from a hat with the only stipulation being that each runner-up will be placed on the opposite side of the bracket from their Area champion.
When the seeding and hat drawing was over, Social Circle will face Bremen the number one seed and defending state champion for their first match. “We are excited about the challenge,” said Prater. When addressing his young team about the tournament bracket (all 9th and 10th graders with only four seniors) at practice, Prater read one of the teams motto’s placed on the wall of the wrestling room “to be a monster you have to first defeat one.”
“Our success was a collaborative effort from everyone in the program,” Prater said. “The team wanted it (qualifying for state), the coaches wanted it, and the parents wanted it. Everyone is very proud and excited for the Social Circle wrestlers.”