The Festus wrestling program will be represented by four athletes at the state wrestling tournament after this past weekend’s district tournament at Farmington High School. The Tigers finished sixth as a team, accumulating 93 points. Pacific won the team competition with 191 points.
Eight Tigers scored points for the team, led by Dillon French (11). French was the lone Tiger to win his weight class, taking the championship in the 106 pound weight class. He went 3-0 for the tournament with a bye. All three of his victories came by fall, and he beat Vincent Boyen of Pacific in the championship by pinning him at the :27 second mark of the match.
Another Festus qualifier was Zack Naucke (9). Naucke took third in the 113 pound weight class and became the first freshman qualifier in program history. He went 4-1, with three falls. He lost in the semifinal, but won his third place match by fall, defeating Dezmond McSellers from Rockwood Summit at the 4:11 mark.
The third qualifier for the Festus program was Luke Shaver (9). Shaver became the second freshman in program history to qualify by going 3-2 (with a bye) in the championship round of the 145 pound weight class. He lost his first match, but then came all the way back by winning two matches by fall, and another by decision. He fell in the third place match to Eric Pettibone of Webster Groves by major decision, but his fourth place finish qualified him for the state tournament.
The fourth and final qualifier for the Tigers was Cole Bennett (12). Bennett took fourth place in the 152 pound weight class, going 3-2. He started strong, winning his first two matches by fall and decision. He lost in the semifinal match, but then earned his way to the third place match by winning by fall. He dropped a tough decision in that match to Quincy Nelson of Sikeston by the score of 4-2, but he will be in Columbia on Thursday.
Four other Tigers scored points for the team. Dawson Bruno (11) went 2-2 at 132. He won his first two matches by fall. Zach Bradshaw (12) went 1-2 at 170. His victory was by fall, as was Justus LaBrayere‘s (10) at 182. Finally, Reese Montgomery (11) went 2-2 at 285 with both of his victories by fall.
So now it’s on to Columbia for the four state qualifiers. The event occurs from Thursday through Saturday. For more information about the state meet, follow this link: https://www.mshsaa.org/cmspages/WRInfoCentral.aspx
Dillon French Zack Naucke
Luke Shaver Cole Bennett