Troup hangs tough at area duals

Published 2:10 am Friday, January 18, 2019


Daily News

The Troup Tigers hung tough, and were on the doorstep of perhaps earning a spot in the state duals, but four forfeits proved too much to overcome.

Troup hosted the area duals last week, and head coach Tripp Busby knew finishing first or second to qualify for state was going to be a challenge.

Troup was unable to fill four weight classes, which meant it was giving away 24 points because of forfeits.

Despite that, Troup won two matches and was facing off against Cartersville with second place on the line.

It was close the whole way, and it came down to the final match, and Cartersville walked away with a 48-36 victory to finish second and secure a state invitation.

Troup finished with a 2-2 record, with wins over Cedartown and LaGrange and losses to Central-Carroll and Cartersville.

In addition to the loss of points because of the forfeits, Troup head coach Tripp Busby said “everybody was wrestling up a weight class.”

“Not only are we down 24 points, but everybody’s wrestling heavier kids, and we were still able to compete and almost walk away with second place,” Busby said. “I was really proud of them.”

One of the men who was wrestling up a weight class was freshman Kullum Irvin, and Busby said he delivered an inspired effort against Cartersville.

“Kullum Irvin stepped up,” Busby said. “That kid was so much bigger than he was, and was probably a better wrestler, but Kullum was able to get away and use his conditioning. That was really impressive what he did.”

Other standout performers for Troup were Mason Lumpkin, Pearson Strickland, Darious Hanson, Riley Bowles and Colby Harry.

“We’ve got all those guys we can depend on,” Busby said.

Bowles has been a rock in the lineup at 220 pounds, and Busby said he’s an exceptional all-around student.

Bowles, who was also an outstanding football player, is one of the school’s top students, and he delivered the invocation at Thursday’s meeting of the Troup County Board of Education.

“He’s really good leader, and he works his butt off,” Busby said. “He could have easily said I’m not going to be at practice because I’ve got to do that (invocation), but he still came and practiced and hour and a half to go do that. So he’s just dedicated.”

LaGrange’s wrestling team, meanwhile, finished with a 1-2 record.

After losing a hard-fought 48-36 match to Cartersville, LaGrange beat Cedartown 57-24.

Needing a win over Troup to advance, LaGrange College instead lost to Troup 40-33.

“The guys were all told that this is a big match for you as individuals for the traditional area tournament,” LaGrange head coach Scooter Weathers said. “You are competing against one of your cross-town rivals and an area team. We as a team have to learn how to overcome adversity. We have to learn how to fight through adversity and have that mental toughness. Troup wrestled hard and I give them credit.”

LaGrange won the final two matches against Troup, but it needed to win them both by pin to get the team victory

“We had a chance at the end if we could have pinned out but we didn’t,” Weathers said. “I give Troup’s wrestler credit. He fought hard and didn’t get pinned and we gained three points instead of six points in that match.”

Jacob Anderson and Isaiah Coleman both went 3-0 for LaGrange, and Colin Cavender was 2-0.

Austin Skiff, Hunter Brooks, Colton Clines and Joseph Bozeman were 2-1, and Alec Morrissette, Asa Leath, Matt Callaway and Charles Ray each won a match.

Troup and LaGrange will meet again on Tuesday in the county meet that will be held at Callaway.

The teams will be together again for the Area 5-AAAA meet at Central-Carroll.

The top four finishers in each weight class at the area meet will qualify for the state sectional.

The season ends in the state finals in Macon.

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