• Rick Capone, Sports Editor

Mat Jackets finish second at Dragon Invitational

The Woodford County High School wrestling team had a tough time at the Dragon Invitational at South Oldham High School on Saturday, Jan. 21. Missing one of their top wrestlers, Adam Bender, who was out sick, and not being able to fill two weight classes slowed them down a little, but they still finished in second place in the 18-team tournament with 171 points. “Overall, it was a very good day for us,” said Woodford head coach Rusty Parks Jr. “We have a lot of work to do this week before the State Duals championships.” St. Xavier won the tournament with 300.5 points, while Scott High School was third with 146.5 points, Oldham County was fourth with 139.5 points and Moore Traditional High School was fifth with 118 points. Individually, the Mat Jackets had two wrestlers – Joey Roberts and Max Andreoni – win their weight classes, while three others – Chase Yost, Wyatt Andreoni and Andrew Varble finished as runners-up in their weight classes. Here are the results of Woodford’s day at the tournament. Joey Roberts Wt.: 145 lbs. Finish: 1st Joey Roberts opened his tournament with a 4-1 decision over Connor’s Jeremy Lyle, and then followed that up with a pin over Calloway County’s Jacob Kramer and then another pin, this time in the semifinals, over Lafayette’s Kevin Vasquez. With those wins, Roberts advanced to the championship match where he scored a 16-4 technical fall over St. Xavier’s Clayton Hanson to win his division. “Joey Roberts looked outstanding,” said Parks. “He wrestled a very, very tough kid from (St.) X and dominated him with a Tech fall.” Max Andreoni Wt.: 182 lbs Finish: 1st After a first-round bye, Max Andreoni ran the table in the rest of his matches, winning all of them by pins. In his first contested match, he pinned Oldham County’s Caleb Bergquist, then followed that with a pin over St. Xavier’s Zach Cumella in the semifinals. Then in the final, he pinned Hopkinsville’s Katayvon Anthony to win his division. “Max Andreoni looked outstanding as well,” said Parks. “He is our only undefeated wrestler with the 40-0.” Chase Yost Wt.: 120 lbs. Finish: 2nd Chase Yost did not have the tournament he expected, as he lost his first match of the season. Yost had a first-round bye in the Dragon, then pinned Hopkinsville’s Max Dubois to advance to the semifinal, where he pinned Christian County’s Jakerion Merritt. That win put Yost in the final against St. Xavier’s Nate Wheeler, who scored a 4-2 decision to hand Yost his first loss this season and a second-place finish in his division. “That was a huge upset in my opinion for Yost to get beat by Wheeler from (St.) X,” said Parks. “But, the same thing happened last year and Yost ended up winning the State title. Chase will bounce back just fine. He is a competitor and that should definitely motivate him.” Wyatt Andreoni Wt. 132 lbs. Finish: 2nd Wyatt Andreoni continues to have a good season, which he showed with his second-place finish at the Dragon. He opened with a 15-8 decision over Hopkinsville’s Cameron Dearmond, and then pinned Christian County’s Ishmael Griffie. He followed that with a 5-4 decision over South Oldham’s Anthony Pierce in the semifinals, which advanced him to the championship match where he lost a 6-3 decision to Moore Traditional’s Alex Rivera, which gave him the runner-up finish. Andrew Varble Wt.: 195 lbs. Finish: 2nd Andrew Varble opened his tournament with an 8-3 decision over Fern Creek’s Kaleb Corbett, and then followed that up with a pin over St. Xavier’s Justin Voelker. Then, in the semifinals, he scored a 5-0 decision over Oldham County’s Andrew Vasquez to advance to the championship match, where he lost a close 7-5 decision to Trinity’s Kadin Kulmer to give him a second-place finish in his weight class. “Andrew Varble wrestled very well in the finals for five minutes and 30 seconds,” said Parks. “He somewhat relaxed towards the end of the match and it ended up costing him the title. … He and Jack Hill (at 220 pounds) have to find that killer mentality and seal the deal when they’re winning.” Ronan Wyatt Wt.: 138 lbs. Finish: 3rd Ronan Wyatt had a strong start to his day as he opened with a pin over Scott High School’s Nathan Zinser. However, in his next match, he lost a 10-7 decision to Fern Creek’s Nikeem Avent. With that loss, Wyatt next faced Trinity’s Matt Smith and won 2-0 in an exciting overtime match. Next, he won another close match, this one on a 5-4 decision to Connor’s Clayton Boyd . With those wins, Wyatt advanced to the third-place match where he won by forfeit over Moore Traditional’s Isaiah Newberry. CJ Cardwell Wt.: 126 lbs. Finish: 4th CJ Cardwell also had a good tournament at the Dragon. He opened his day with a 9-4 decision over Trinity’s Lukas Brown, and then followed that with a 7-6 decision over South Oldham’s Ben Lundy. However, Cardwell lost his next match by a 7-2 decision to Fern Creek’s Colton Lempe, who went on to win the division. Meanwhile, Cardwell next faced Lafayette’s Jack Raymond and won by a pin. That placed him into the third-place match where he lost by a 19-4 technical fall to Scott High School’s Layne Seibert to finish in fourth place. Isreal Angeles Wt.: 160 lbs. Finish: 7th Isreal Angeles had a very tough start to his day, but it ended on a very high note. He opened by losing his first match by a pin to Christian County’s Antonio Abren. But, from there, he regrouped and ran the table to finish his tournament. It began with a bye, and then he followed that with a pin over Lafayette’s Noah Rhode. That win put him into the seventh-place match where he pinned Hopkinsville’s Kevonni Young to take home seventh place. DJ Bernebe Wt.: 170 lbs. Finish: 7th DJ Bernabe had a slow start to the day, but a strong finish. He opened the day with a tough loss by pin to Hopkinsville’s Kolby Morris. After that, he went undefeated the rest of the day. After a bye in his next match, he won a 5-3 decision over Tates Creek’s Garett Belcher, which put him into the seventh-place match, where he pinned Fern Creek’s Devauhn Richardson to bring home seventh place. Juan Chavez Wt.: 152 lbs. Finish: 8th Juan Chavez’s opened his day with a tough one-point loss in a 9-8 decision to Tates Creek’s Myles Harris, but then he came back strong and defeated Trinity’s Grant Smith by a pin and Connor’s Isaiah Brewer. That win put him into the consolation championship match where he lost by a pin to Fern Creek’s Montaye Keltee to finish in eighth place. Jack Hill Wt.: 220 lbs. Finish: DNP Jack Hill had a tough day at the Dragon, but he continues to improve with every tournament he’s in. He opened his day with a loss by a pin to Calloway County’s Colby Culber. He then followed that up with a 6-2 decision over Fern Creek’ Gag Gray, but then lost his next match by a 6-4 decision to Oldham County’s Alex Roberts to finish unplaced in the tournament. Next up, Woodford travels to Lindsey Wilson College in Columbia on Saturday, Jan. 28, for the State Duals. Start time is approximately 10 a.m.

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