The 2012-2013 season will get under way on Saturday, with Callaway, LaGrange and Troup all in action.
Callaway and LaGrange will participate in the Granger Duals, while Troup will compete in the Carrollton Duals.
At LaGrange, six teams will participate, and every team will wrestle each other.
After the final match, the team with the best record will be declared the tournament champion.
In recent years, that team has more often than not been LaGrange.
“The last four years, we’ve won three out of four,” LaGrange head coach Scooter Weathers said. “It’s been a pretty good run.”
While most of the teams will be making their season debut, Weathers said McIntosh will have a leg-up on the competition.
“McIntosh comes in here, and they’re 6-1,” Weathers said. “They’ve already had seven duals.”
Weathers said all of the teams are capable of making a strong showing.
“It’ll be interesting. It’ll be fun Saturday,” he said.
Weathers said his wrestlers have done a great job of preparing for Saturday.
“The kids are great,” Weathers said. “They’re coming out and working hard and getting after it. We’re practicing hard.”
Callaway head coach Kurt Napier said his team is looking forward to making its debut in Saturday’s tournament.
“It’s always really good competition at the Granger Duals,” Napier said. “I feel like you get an indication of how your team looks to start the year.”
The best thing about Saturday’s tournament, Napier said, is the opportunity it provides for the wrestlers to get in a lot of mat time.
He feels that’s especially important for the guys new to varsity wrestling.
“Another thing for our young wrestlers is, it just gives them a chance to be on the mat with some high-school guys and see what the competition is like on the high-school level to kind of start off the year,” Napier said.
Troup, meanwhile, will be one of eight teams participating in the Carrollton Duals.
The Tigers will be significantly short-handed for a variety of reasons, but head coach Chris Mitchem said it’ll be a valuable experience for everyone who is there.
“We’re going to take our licks, but it’s all for experience,” Mitchem said. “We’ll get our young guys some varsity experience.”
That experience will be beneficial for a team that is rebuilding after the loss of a number of talented seniors.
“We’re real young,” Mitchem said. “We lost a lot of our firepower from last year, but we’ve got a lot of kids who are going to be pretty good this year I think.”
OF NOTE: See Sunday’s sports section for preview stories on the Callaway, LaGrange and Troup wrestling teams.