“Each practice consisted of a 30 minute continuous run/sprints, six minutes of speed drills per wrestler, move drilling, live wrestling, and we finished up with conditioning. The wrestlers practiced every day for two plus hours,” Bowman stated. “That is why I call these 11 wrestlers elite, as this sport is one of the toughest sports they will ever endure.”
Bowman said the Bulldogs were a young team this season, consisting of seven wrestlers that were stepping on the mats for the very first time.
Members of the team this season were Gauge Lameka, Dillon Johnson, Christopher Sherfield, Levi Laffitte, Jeb Hays, Cody Tibbets, Calvin Ragsdale, Tyler Blalock, Alex Carmona, and Kerry Lefurgey.
The season ended on Jan. 13-14 when the Bulldogs wrestled at the Floyd County Area Championship tournament, hosted by Armuchee Middle School.
“We had nine out of our 11 wrestlers on the roster that competed in the tournament,” Bowman said. “Out of the nine wrestlers, seven wrestlers brought home medals by finishg in the top four places in their weight classes, with one tournament champion.”
Sherfield won first place in the 103-pound weight class. Brame (95), Tibbets (125), Blalock (170), and Carmona (200) all finished in third place. Lameka (70) and Ragsdale (132) placed in fourth.
“We had a really good year considering we only had 11 wrestlers on the roster and only had enough wrestlers to fill nine out of a possible 20 weight classes,” Bowman said. “In any dual competition, we were forfeiting anywhere from 42 to 66 team points. In that situation, it is hard to win any team competition. The team did, however, finish fourth out of six teams at the Junior Jacket Tournament held in Rockmart earlier this season.”
Bowman noted that four of the wrestlers – Sherfield, Brame, Tibbets, and Hayes – were eighth graders and will move on to the high school ranks next year.
“We wish them the best of luck in their wrestling careers,” Bowman said. “I appreciate the opportunity to be a part of their early wrestling careers.”
Bowman also wanted to encourage the remaining wrestlers to come out again next year.
“We have several wrestlers in the USA youth program that will be coming up to middle school next year,” Bowman said.
The taskmaster also had several people he wanted to thank.
“I would like to take the opportunity to thank the Polk County School District, parents, and the Cedartown Matdawg Booster Club for their support and dedication to make this program a successful one and allowing me to coach this fine group of young men,” Bowman said.
“I would also like to thank coach Laura McLendon and coach Kelly McLendon for their efforts this year. Without their dedication to the team, we could not have had such a successful season.”