Raiders ready to rumble

Benjamin Logan’s wrestling program takes its turn to host a tournament Saturday with its annual Raider Invitational.

The Raider Invitational has been a competitive tournament throughout the years. However, this year may turn out to be even stronger. The 12-team tournament starts at 9:30 a.m.

“I think it could really be one of the most evenly matched tournaments we’ve had over the years,” said Ben Logan head coach Tony Grant. “Tecumseh, Kenton Ridge and our team are all solid. Covington has some good kids, too.”

The Raiders have won five out of the last six tournaments and this is something Grant is expecting to continue.

“I always expect to win it,” said Grant. “That is something I would expect at every tournament. Now that doesn’t always happen, but that is always my expectation.”

The 152-pound weight class in particular brings a lot of interest. Five of the wrestlers involved are very talented. T.J Rigel of Tecumseh was second in the state last season in Division I, Eric Hildenbrand of Franklin was a state qualifier and the Raiders’ own Skylar Wohlgamuth was a district placer. Two others who shouldn’t be overlooked are Jake Martycz of Kenton Ridge and Josh McMillion of Covington. Both of those grapplers were district qualifiers last year.

“That is going to be a good weight class,” said Grant. “You have that many talented guys at one weight and it will make for a good day of wrestling. As for Skylar, we’ll see what he is made of.”

Ohio Wrestling

Tigers, Lakers competing in big tournaments

West Liberty-Salem and Indian Lake both compete in tough tournaments on Saturday.

The Tigers compete in the Thunderbird Classic at Lima Central Catholic. The Thunderbird hosts 35 Division III teams. WL-Salem finished second last year, with Peter Lewis (160) winning his weight class. Three other wrestlers finished in the top six for the Tigers last season. Mechanicsburg and Greeneview are top contenders to win the meet this year.

The Lakers are also in for a battle at the Salley George Invitational hosted by Marion Pleasant. There are 18 teams in action there including a team from Texas.

Local wrestlers ranked in ‘Brakeman Report’

A total of seven area wrestlers are ranked in the Brakeman Report, which came out Wednesday night.

Leading the local grapplers is Ben Logan standout Alex Jackson (285), who is ranked second in Division II. Jackson is the only wrestler in his division who returns with a state tournament win.

Also in Division II, the Raiders’ Skylar Wohlgamuth (152) is ranked 14th, Ben Logan’s Payton Rose (215) is 26th and Indian Lake’s Kevin Christman (160) is ranked seventh.

In Division III, WL-Salem’s Peter Lewis (160) is seventh, Corey Thompson (171) is 17th, Britt Wooten (119) is 23rd and Triad’s Jordan Deady (140) is ranked eight at 135 pounds.

Graham is projected to win six state titles and have three other state finalists. Brakeman has a total of 13 Falcons placing at the state meet.

Taylor makes history

Graham’s David Taylor solidified himself as a legend in the sport of Ohio wrestling Saturday. The senior bumped up a weight class to take on fellow three-time state champion Collin Palmer of Lakewood St. Edward at a tri-meet. What transpired will go down in Ohio wrestling history.

Palmer took down Taylor six seconds into the match. He even led 4-1 before Taylor tied the bout 4-4 in the third period. Taylor went on to score a takedown and later tilted Palmer for two near fall points and won 8-5.

It was the first time a pair of three-time Ohio state champions have faced off in a match.

Two things that stood out to me were that Palmer, who has a deadly power half, could not turn Taylor. The second was Taylor’s superb riding skills. He was like a leech and Palmer had difficulty as the match wore on. Palmer even admitted after the match he was worn out and needed to condition better.

If interested in watching the Taylor-Palmer battle, go to