Bainbridge wrestling team hits the mat for 2018-19 season

Published 4:19 pm Tuesday, November 6, 2018

The Bainbridge High School wrestling team is returning 23 wrestlers to the mat this season.

Conditioning got underway last week for the team, and official practice began Monday. Coach Chad Smith is excited about the season for many reasons, but he’s most looking forward to filling every weight class.

Previously, the Bearcats forfeited 6 points per match for every weight class unfilled.

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“We have always forfeited 18-24 points a match, so you almost lose before you started,” said Smith. “But we still have been successful doing that. So I am excited to see what this year has in store after not starting with any forfeits.”

Big returners include Kendell Glover, who was one match away from being a state contender last season, Randy Fillingame, who was one match away from placing last year at state, and Carson Love. Fillingame, a starting linebacker for the Bearcats, will join the wrestlers after the football season wraps up.

Goals for the season include winning a region title, but Smith is looking beyond that.

“My coaching style is more toward the individual side of wrestling, so I would like to have four or five region champs individual-wise, and send at least three to state, and get at least one state placer, which I think is very, very possible,” said Smith.

Hurricane Michael caused a delay in school, which also ate away at time the wrestlers had to practice. Smith knows there isn’t much time before the season’s first match, coming on Nov. 17 at Northside-Columbus.

“We are a little behind right now,” said Smith. “It’s our first time up there at (Northside-Columbus), so I’m not really sure what to expect, competition-wise, but as always, I’ll do my best to get them there.”