Evan Sigman medals, Preston Barnett competes at GIAA State wrestling tournament

Published 3:34 pm Tuesday, February 6, 2024

Senior Grace Christian Academy wrestler Evan Sigman finished sixth in the state and medaled at the GIAA State Wrestling tournament over the weekend. Cougars head coach, and Sigman’s father, Michael Sigman said he was overjoyed to see his son on the podium.

“It was amazing,” Coach Sigman said. “That’s something he’s been working for for some time, you know, since we started the team three years ago… I was extremely happy and proud of him.”

Junior Preston Barnett finished 7th in his weight class, one spot from medalling and getting on the podium, beating the champion from GCA’s region on the way.

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“He did great,” Coach Sigman said. “He actually beat our region champion… He really did a great job of wrestling.”

Barnett and Sigman are two of a three-person wrestling team at Grace Christian Academy. Freshman Peyton Powell is the third wrestler, and the team was formed three years ago. Coach Sigman said he was proud of his wrestlers’ performances against bigger teams despite the shortcomings they face as part of a young program.

“Most of them have more coaches than we have wrestlers,” Coach Sigman said. “They’ve got a lot going against them, but they don’t complain and just kept improving.”

Coach Sigman said he felt the wrestling program at Grace found its stride this year after trying to find its footing for two years prior.

“Our first two years, we were just trying to figure out what we needed to be doing to be successful,” Coach Sigman said. “I think this last year, we really started improving as far as skill level and ability to compete.”

Coach Sigman said he wished he had “one more year” with Sigman on the team, given the program’s building momentum. He added that he’s looking forward to seeing what Barnett and Powell can accomplish going forward.

“We’ll see what we can capitalize on,” Coach Sigman said.