MONTGOMERY – The Cherokee County High School wrestling program continued to make history over the weekend at the state tournament in Montgomery.
The Warriors had six wrestlers compete in Class 1A-4A on Friday and Saturday, including Cody Herrick (132) and David Herrick (138), Joseph Rayborn (145), Alex Weeks (152), Javon Rogers (220) and Camron Mooney (285).
Out of the six, David Herrick (22-5) took third place while Cody Herrick (23-2) finished fourth.
“David was one of the wrestlers I thought could go in and break the bracket,” Warrior head coach Matthew Pharr said. “We knew he was going to wrestle the second seed (Weaver’s Lena Johannson) in the second round, and he was able to come out and control that match the entire time. He’s a smart wrestler who’s starting to gain some strength and some confidence and I’d take him over any 138 in the state.”
Pharr said David Herrick lost his only match in the semifinals to Houston Academy’s Andrew Gil “because there weren’t a few more seconds on the clock.”
“His story arc for this season is amazing,” Pharr said. “He was injured all of last season, didn’t have a good year as a result, and thought about not even coming back out this year. He decided about mid October he was going to give it another shot and since then he has bought in 100 percent. For him to get this positive gratification is awesome.”
Pharr said he knows Cody Herrick is a little disappointed with how everything worked out for him at state, but he “showed throughout the season he is an elite wrestler in the state.”
“He beat three of the top six wrestlers. He just got unlucky that he gave up his only two losses on the season in one day, so this hardly defines the competitor he is and his skill level,” Pharr said of Cody Herrick. “He’s worked all season to prove he could be an elite wrestler and he’s done that. All offseason we dreamed about wrestling the kid (Weaver’s Travis Bellar) that knocked him out of the state tournament last year, and while it wasn’t the championship finals like we planned, we did get him in the consolation semifinals. Cody controlled him for nearly the entire match earning a 6-3 decision.”
Pharr said he’s proud of how far his entire team has come in just the program’s fourth season.
“We were able to take two first-year wrestlers and have them experience how incredible the state tournament is. We had two second-year guys who were almost able to make it to day two. Joseph Rayborn had one of the worst draws happen to him in wrestling the state champion in the second round, and then wrestled the third-place winner in the next round, but he competed better against those two than anyone else in the tournament. Alex Weeks has been nursing injuries all season, and his conditioning has taken a hit as a result, but despite the injuries he was still able to go out and wrestle his tail off winning his first postseason match.”
The Warriors’ complete state wrestling results are listed below.
AHSAA 1A-4A State Wrestling Championships Results for Cherokee County
Cody Herrick (23-2) placed fourth and scored 16.0 team points.
Champ. Round 1 – Cody Herrick (Cherokee County) 23-2 won by fall over Deacon Engle (Ohatchee) 11-12 (Fall 1:07)
Quarterfinal – Cody Herrick (Cherokee County) 23-2 won by fall over William Simmons (St. John Paul Ii) 16-6 (Fall 3:41)
Semifinal – Titus Franklin (Montgomery Catholic) 23-1 won in sudden victory – 1 over Cody Herrick (Cherokee County) 23-2 (SV-1 12-10)
Cons. Semi – Cody Herrick (Cherokee County) 23-2 won by decision over Travis Bellar (Weaver) 32-5 (Dec 6-3)
3rd Place Match – Nick Spears (Ashville) 29-5 won by decision over Cody Herrick (Cherokee County) 23-2 (Dec 7-3)
David Herrick (22-5) placed 3rd and scored 19.5 team points.
Champ. Round 1 – David Herrick (Cherokee County) 22-5 won by tech fall over Alex Cullen (Piedmont) 32-18 (TF-1.5 2:43 (15-0))
Quarterfinal – David Herrick (Cherokee County) 22-5 won by fall over Lena Johannson (Weaver) 9-3 (Fall 4:45)
Semifinal – Andrew Gil (Houston Academy) 23-3 won by decision over David Herrick (Cherokee County) 22-5 (Dec 4-2)
Cons. Semi – David Herrick (Cherokee County) 22-5 won by fall over Jake Huff (Saint James) 27-5 (Fall 1:11)
3rd Place Match – David Herrick (Cherokee County) 22-5 won by decision over Brendan Steder (Westminster Christian Acad) 16-6 (Dec 7-0)
Joseph Rayborn (18-7) scored 4.0 team points.
Champ. Round 1 – Joseph Rayborn (Cherokee County) 18-7 won by fall over Zac Currier (WS Neal) 25-15 (Fall 1:48)
Quarterfinal – Jaylen Thomas (White Plains) 22-0 won by fall over Joseph Rayborn (Cherokee County) 18-7 (Fall 2:20)
Cons. Round 2 – Anthony Usry (Weaver) 32-3 won by decision over Joseph Rayborn (Cherokee County) 18-7 (Dec 4-2)
Alex Weeks (13-7) scored 1.0 team points.
Champ. Round 1 – Shawn Sponsler (Montgomery Catholic) 18-3 won by fall over Alex Weeks (Cherokee County) 13-7 (Fall 3:39)
Cons. Round 1 – Alex Weeks (Cherokee County) 13-7 won by decision over Caleb Mullenix (American Christian Acad) 11-8 (Dec 7-4)
Cons. Round 2 – Solomon Crapp (WS Neal) 45-23 won by decision over Alex Weeks (Cherokee County) 13-7 (Dec 11-8)
Javon Rogers (8-15)
Champ. Round 1 – Treveon Bolton (Saks) 24-0 won by tech fall over Javon Rogers (Cherokee County) 8-15 (TF-1.5 2:03 (16-0))
Cons. Round 1 – Travis Atchley (Pleasant Valley) 23-3 won by decision over Javon Rogers (Cherokee County) 8-15 (Dec 8-7)
Camron Mooney (9-12)
Champ. Round 1 – Cole Dennis (Montevallo) 27-3 won by fall over Camron Mooney (Cherokee County) 9-12 (Fall 0:30)
Cons. Round 1 – Gavin Faulds (St. John Paul Ii) 15-13 won by fall over Camron Mooney (Cherokee County) 9-12 (Fall 2:04)