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‘Big 4’ for BHS wrestling

Four wrestlers have stood out for coach Juan Hernandez’s Bearden Bulldogs during the first-half of the 2006-07 season.

With returning standouts Nathan Bevelhimer (160-pound class) and Andrew Birdwell (135), the Bulldogs have had a new kid on the block excel.

Jacob Coffin, a freshman, has caught Hernandez’s eye at 130.

“He’s just a good kid to coach, consistent,” Hernandez said, adding that Coffin is setting such a good example that many older players “need to follow his lead.”

Meanwhile, Matt Moore (135) has won praise from the coach for his efforts filling in for Birdwell, who’s been out with a shoulder injury since early December. “He’s stepped up, he’s my most improved,” Hernandez said.

As for Birdwell,” “He’s a great kid, he’s got talent,” Hernandez said, adding that Birdwell is a “mentor” to Coffin. “They’re practice partners, so they beat each other up every day.”

Coffin, Moore and Bevelhimer were all winners during the St. Mary’s tournament at Knoxville Catholic High School Dec. 9, where Bearden finished third among a field of seven. “Everybody on the team got their first win,” Hernandez said. “I was pleased.”

Hernandez praised Bevelhimer as an “all-around, tough, athletic kid,” but said he could be even better with a little more diligence to duty.

In dual matches, highlight wins for a BHS program sporting a 7-4 record have come against Kingston, Austin-East, Webb, Alcoa and Fulton. The Webb match highlighted Coffin’s upset victory against standout Spartan Spencer Arnett.

BHS will wrestle in the Gibbs tournament Saturday, Jan. 6.


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