Lowell, St. Johns are 1-2 in wrestling rankings; Whitehall moves into top 10
Grand Rapids – Now that the holidays are over, and the year changed to 2015, high school wrestling teams in the state start to prepare for the team and individual state tournament runs.
There are several ways to accomplish that, including putting teams in difficult tournaments and seeing where they stand.
The state had a couple of those tournaments in the recent past in the Detroit Catholic Central Invitational and the Goodrich Tournament of Champions Invitational, and teams from State Champs Power 15 fared well in both.
- Lowell – The Red Arrows looked strong in winning the Detroit Catholic Central Invitational. They proved to be deep at the 23-team field.
- St. Johns – The Redwings had a nice run through the holidays. Before Christmas St. Johns traveled west and won a tough Holland Team Tournament, and then came back to comfortably win the Goodrich Tournament of Champions.
- Brighton – The Bulldogs justified that they are going to be a player in the Division 1 team tournament this year by taking second at the Detroit C.C. Invite, just ahead of the host Shamrocks.
- Dundee – State Champs is keeping the talented Vikings at fourth in this ranking, but was taken back a bit by their third-place finish at the Goodrich TOC.
- Richmond – Richmond will be there when the Team Finals take place in Battle Creek in late February, and will want to take back what Dundee has in the championship trophy. .
- Davison – Coach Roy Hall always coaches for late February and the state finals. And he always has his team ready to go in Battle Creek. This team should be no different, led by three-time state champion Lincoln Olson.
- New Lothrop – No change here for this Division 4 power.
- Detroit Catholic Central – Moved up two spots thanks to its third-place finish at its own tournament. Coach Mitch Hancock is doing a wonderful job with a team that lost a lot of talent from last year. .
- Whitehall – Biggest mover in this ranking. Whitehall wasn’t even ranked in State Champs first Power 15, but moved into the top 10 thanks to a second-place finish at the Goodrich TOC.
- Hudson – Have to keep the Tigers in the Top 10 even though they took 10th at Detroit C.C.
- Grandville – The Bulldogs stay here thanks to the big debate over how team wins are more important than finishes at individual tournaments. Grandville beat Niles and Grand Rapids Catholic Central early, but took 18th at Detroit C.C. Those two team wins have to mean something.
- New Baltimore Anchor Bay – A big win over Hartland early can’t be ignored and keeps this team in the Power 15.
- Hartland – Hartland wrestled well in Holland, taking second to St. Johns at the team tournament. Lost to the Redwings 36-24.
- Niles – A scrappy group, the problem Niles has is that it’s in the same division with Lowell and St. Johns. But an appearance in the semifinals is a definite possibility.
- Grand Rapids Catholic Central – Coach B.J. Schroder has a great individual tournament team, as evident to the Cougars’ fourth-place finish at Detroit C.C. But G.R.C.C. has holes that need to be filled before February gets here.