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Three wrestling Ads place at ‘really tough’ Bradley Invitational
McKinley, Landers lead Bulldog grappling effort

Three Farragut High School wrestlers qualified (top six finish) during one of the state’s top wrestling tournaments, the annual Bearden Invitational, Friday and Saturday, Dec. 19-20, among a 26-team, 300-plus wrestler field at Bradley Central High School in Cleveland.

Among seven Admiral wrestlers on hand, Clayton Ginn took fifth in the 140-pound class, while teammates Ethan Farinella (125) and Greg Grieco (189) each finished sixth.

“That’s a really tough tournament, state champions in just about every weight class,” FHS head coach Tim Brunson said. “But the kids responded well and wrestled well this weekend.”

Meanwhile, Bearden got more than expected while participating in the Wolfpack Duals, Rome, Ga., Saturday, Dec. 20, among a 10-team field. (More on the Bulldogs later in this story)


Brunson also praised one of his youngsters, Josh Hensley, a first-year wrestler at 171. “He’s picked up very quickly,” the coach said. “He got a couple of wins starting out” versus Christian Academy of Knoxville and Knoxville Catholic.

Brunson also said Chris Berman (189/215) “is doing very well,” while Bo Cook sports a 6-0 record at 103.

The Admirals’ dual meet record is 5-8, “which is not that bad ... we’re giving up forfeits,” said Brunson, who lost to Catholic on forfeits despite going 7-0 in matches actually contested.

Overall as a team, “We were doing above my expectations until about a week-and-a-half ago,” Brunson said. “Then we hit a little slump and we didn’t wrestle well”


Taking nine wrestlers to Georgia, BHS head coach Donnie Floyd said he “chalked that up to a learning experience. I was under the impression that it was going to be a not real intense tournament when I got the invite. It was very intense, it was a little more than we were ready for.”

Ian McKinley, junior in the 112-pound class, had one win “and a very close loss,” Floyd said.

Floyd said Peyton Landers, sophomore first-year wrestler (189), has made “giant improvement since first day of practice.”

Three Bulldog grapplers have been sidelined with shoulder injuries — all requiring surgery according to Floyd. Tops among the trio is junior Jacob Coffin (160), a state qualifier as a freshman who did not wrestle last season. Coffin injured his shoulder while playing for the BHS football team.

The other shoulder victims are promising sophomores Theo Smith (140) and Jerin Kaldenberg (125).

Bearden’s next tournament is the Gibbs Eagle Invitational Jan. 3.


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