The state’s best wrestlers will be at the CenturyLink Center Friday and Saturday for the Allstate Sugar Bowl/LHSAA State Wrestling Tournament.
Individual and state champions will be crowned in Divisions I, II and III.
There are two sessions each day. Friday’s first session gets started at 9 a.m. with Division I action. Session II starts at 5:30 p.m.
Saturday’s first session starts at 9 a.m. The final session, which features championship matches, begins at 5:30.
This will be the second time the state tournament has been held at the CenturyLink. In 2011, it drew record crowds.
Two of the four Bossier Parish wrestlers who won state titles last year return.
Airline junior Christian Walden won the Division I 152-pound class. Parkway senior Nathan Pitts won the Divison II 145-pound class.
Walden has moved up to 160 pounds and Pitts to 152.
Walden is 45-1 this season with his only loss coming in the 160-pound final of the Texas Outlaw tournament. Pitts brings a 30-1 record into the meet.
Walden and Pitts are both seeded No. 1 in their respective weight divisions.
Two other parish wrestlers earned top seeds — Airline’s Javarious Jones (Division I 126) and Keegan Gilligan (Division I 182). Jones is 43-3 and Gilligan is 36-6.
Parkway’s Levar Allen (Division II 160) and Haughton’s Johnny Vanveckhoven (Division II 220) earned No. 2 seeds. Allen is 27-7 and Vanveckhoven is 11-2.
Haughton’s Dylan Holliday (14-1), who finished runner-up in the 120-pound class last season, is a No. 3 seed in the same class. Airline’s Joshua Partin (Division I 132) and Haughton’s Daniel Monroe (Division II 195) are seeded third in their respective weight classes.
Parish wrestlers seeded fourth are Airline’s Tony Lococo (Division I 145), Parkway’s Garrett Strozier (Division II 114) and Haughton’s Jonathan McCleskey (Division II 285).
Parkway’s Trevor Tamburo (Division II 120) and Matthew Pitts (Division II 126), who posted top-four finishes last year, should also be contenders in their respective weight divisions.
The Panthers finished fourth in Division II last year and have a chance to equal or better that position.
Airline will be looking to improve on last year’s eighth-place finish in tough Division I.
The Vikings have had a great season. They followed up their third straight regional title with a third straight win in the Bossier Parish Championships last week.
Walden was named Outstanding Wrestler in the upper weight divisons.
Jones (126) and Gilligan (182) also won titles along with teammates Dakota Brace (106), Tucker Almond (113), Partin (132), Kyler Barringer (138) and Dalton Lambright (145).
Haughton’s Holliday (120), Monroe (195), Vanveckhoven (220) and McCleskey (285) also won.
Other parish champs were Nathan Pitts (152) and Benton’s Jordan Myles (170).
— Russell Hedges, firstname.lastname@example.org