Marysville High School wrestler Walker Heard has the upper hand in this match from the 2018 regional tournament of the state duals event. The Monarchs will host the 2019 regional tournament on Saturday.
(Journal-Tribune photo by Tim Miller)
The first leg for a berth in the state duals wrestling tournament will begin Saturday at Marysville High School.
The Monarchs will host Region 5 of the Division I regional championships, beginning at 9 a.m.
MHS, which drew the No. 2 seed for the regional tournament, will host 12 other squads.
There were originally scheduled to be 14 total teams, however, Whitehall dropped out of the competition.
Additional teams scheduled to compete are as follows (with team seeding):
-Dublin Coffman, first;
-Upper Arlington, third;
-Delaware Hayes, fourth;
-Westerville South, sixth;
-Big Walnut, eighth;
-New Albany, ninth;
-Worthington Kilbourne, tenth;
-Thomas Worthington, 12th;
The Monarchs have earned a first-round bye and will begin their competition at approximately 10:45 a.m. They will face the winner of the Worthington Kilbourne-Gahanna match in the single-elimination format.
A victory would push MHS into the semifinals, where its opponent will likely be Upper Arlington.
The Monarchs defeated the Golden Bears in an Ohio Capital Conference Central Division dual match last week.
Should Marysville advance to the championship round at approximately 5 p.m., it would more than likely face the top-seeded Shamrocks.
Coffman defeated MHS in an OCC dual match earlier in the season.
“We are certainly not looking past Upper Arlington in the semifinals,” said Monarch head coach Shawn Andrews. “However, if we do wrestle Dublin Coffman, it will give us a chance to see where we have made adjustments in the past two weeks.”
Andrews said he hopes to see more consistency out of his squad during the regional progressions.
“The recent message we’ve given to the team is that we need to build that,” he said. “We have had different wrestlers do well in one match, but not do so well in others.
“We need consistency and effort from all 14 weight classes across the board.”
The Monarchs, who have won a regional championship four times in the past six years, will go into the tournament with a lineup that features only three athletes who competed on this level a year ago.
They are Walker Heard (152-160), Logan Painter (195) and Ethan Smegal (220).
“This is the first full varsity season for 11 of our wrestlers who will be competing on Saturday,” said Andrews. “We want to see how they have grown during the season.”
The Monarch coach said he’s not sure of his exact lineup for Saturday.
“That may change in various weight classes with each dual,” he said. “We want to put a lineup on the mat each time that will give us the best chances for success.”
Teams are permitted to weigh-in up to 28 grapplers for tournament competition in fill the 14 weight classes.
“We won’t weigh in that many,” said Andrews. “We’ll probably weigh in somewhere around 22.
“We may move around some people in order to give us the best possible match-ups.”
Just what will it take for the Monarchs to defend their 2018 regional title?
“I say this every year,” said Andrews. “In order to advance to the state in the duals format, everyone on our team has to do their job.
“It’s going to be important for us to pick up bonus points (pinfalls, technical falls and major decisions) when we can.”
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