The Wildcats wrestling team took home a fifth place finish in the R.J. Reynolds invitational wrestling tournament last Friday and Saturday. West Stokes finished in fifth place among 16 teams competing from northwestern North Carolina.
Six of West Stokes’ eight varsity wrestlers placed in the individuals tournament.
Junior George Patrick (113 lbs.) grabbed a first place finish in his weight division. Wildcat Coach Kris Kahila said that Patrick wrestled “very fast and very strong” in the tournament.
Brandon Cagle (106) only lost one match and grabbed a third place finish. Jacob Widener (132) also grabbed a third place finish.
Holden Sands, who has “displayed a lot of improvement” in recent weeks, wrestled for a third place finish in the tournament, Kahila said.
Josh Adkins (160) and Derrick Drain (170) both lost two matches to end the day with a fifth place finish.
Kahila said he was pleased with how his team performed in the tournament.
“As you watch them as a group, it doesn’t look like the same team [from late November],” he said. “They’re more aggressive and their technique has really improved.”
The Wildcats had a tough 0-4 record to start their season in late November, but the team has improved in recent weeks to a record of 7-10 in the regular season and 2-0 in the conference.
At the beginning of the season, Kahila thought the team would be “lucky” to win a match. Recent weeks have proven what the team is capable of.
“It isn’t anything to brag about, but considering what I thought we would be, I think we’re doing pretty good,” he said.
Kahila said that the team will likely face some “bumps in the road” this season, but that he still expects his team to do well in the conference tournament in February.
“We want to get better,” he said.