The Mat Panthers earned the tournament championship Dec. 15-16 at the John Smith Mountaineer meet held at Lumpkin County.
The Jackson County Comprehensive High School opened the tournament by beating East Hall (51-21), Riverside Military (51-18) and Forsyth Central (57-14).
“We wrestled very disciplined and stuck to our strengths,” coach Jason Powers said. “We still have a lot to learn and have a lot of areas to improve upon, but we are coming together nicely as individuals and a team.”
He called the team’s effort the next day as “great” with all of the team’s nine competitors finishing in the top three, with Luke Gonzalez (113 lb.), Conner Andreasen (132 lb.) and Evan Breakspear (220 lb.) and Daivon Ledford (170 lb.) placing first.
The Panthers held off tournament host Lumpkin County, defeating the Indians by one point.
Other Jackson County wrestlers who placed were: second place, JT Wood (120 lb.), Zak Evans (145 lb.); third place, Conner Crump (106 lb.), Lane Robertson (195 lb.) and Anthony Ledford (138 lb.).
“For some of our wrestlers, this was their first high school medal of many to come,” Powers said. “Each one of them showed a lot of heart at some point during the tournament and it paid off for them as individuals and as a team.”
The tournament capped a strong week for the Panthers.
On Dec. 11, the team beat East Jackson (46-28), Franklin County (53-28) and Westminster (52-20). Three wins last week came against Area teams.