Montevallo, Shelby County qualify 7 wrestlers for state

Published 4:49 pm Monday, February 11, 2019

By ALEC ETHEREDGE | Sports Editor

MONTGOMERY – The Montevallo Bulldogs and Shelby County Wildcats took several wrestlers to the South Super Sectional meet held at Garrett Coliseum between Friday, Feb. 8 and Saturday, Feb. 9, looking to continue a special season by competing for a spots in the state meet.

With the top eight wrestlers from each weight class advancing to the state meet, which will be held at Huntsville’s Von Braun Center later this week, both teams saw their best wrestlers continue special seasons by locking up their ticket.

The two teams combined to qualify seven wrestlers thanks to four from Shelby County and three from Montevallo finishing inside the needed top eight spots.

Montevallo’s Jemari Harris had the biggest highlight of the event in the 120-pound weight class.

He has consistently been one of the best in the county and the state this year, and proved why at the sectional meet by taking home first in his weight class.

Harris received a bye in the opening round, before putting together one major-decision win in the second round followed by three consecutive pins to storm to through his opponents and grab first place.

Rankin Allen helped the Bulldogs pull off another top three finisher thanks to his finish of third in the 195-pound weight class. After winning via pin in his first two matches, Allen got pinned in the semifinals, before bouncing back with two consecutive wins, including a pin in the third-place match.

The final Montevallo wrestler to qualify for state was Hunter Bass, who finished fifth in the 220-pound division. While he lost two matches, both by pins, he won four other matches, including the fifth-place match, all by way of pin to earn a spot at state. 

For Shelby County, Dalton Brooks, Taylor Wilkins, Austin Dunn and Caleb Mooney all get their shot at competing for a state title after earning a spot as well.

The two highest finishes for the Wildcats came from Dunn and Brooks, as both finished sixth in their respective weight class.

Dunn, wrestling in the 152-pound weight class, won four of his first five matches with two pins, a major decision and a decision, while losing three matches all by decision or major decision.

Similarly, Brooks won four of his first five matches in the 195-pound division as well, the first of which was a bye. After that bye, he went 3-1 in his next four matches with all three wins coming from a pin. Like Dunn, he then lost the consolation semifinal match as well as the fifth-place match.

Mooney ended up being the next highest finisher for Shelby County thanks to his finish of seventh in the 126-pound weight class.

With a record of 4-2 overall, Mooney had one bye and three pins, while losing his two matches via pin as well.

Wilkins became the final wrestler to qualify for the Wildcats after finishing eighth on the number in the 160-pound weight class.

He did enough in the first five rounds to guarantee his spot thanks to the help of two byes, as well as one pin and a decision victory. All three of his losses came by way of pin, but with his eighth-place finish, he gets the opportunity to wrestle for a state championship.

In the overall team standings, Montevallo finished 10th, while the Wildcats took home 16th.