Evan Sigman finishes 3rd, qualifies nationally at tri-state wrestling tournament

Published 12:00 pm Thursday, March 7, 2024

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Senior Grace Christian Academy wrestler Evan Sigman traveled home from the GIAA State Wrestling tournament on Feb. 3, thinking he had just wrestled for the last time. He finished sixth at the meet, a pretty good way to go out. 

But that wasn’t the end. Two weeks later, Sigman was called up as an alternate to wrestle in a tri-state regional wrestling tournament. He wrestled against the top competition from the southeast and finished 3rd, qualifying for a national tournament.

“It felt great ‘cause I really thought I might never wrestle again,” Sigman said. “I was just thrilled to have the chance, and I was like, ‘I’m going to go out and do the best I can and make sure I’m proud of how I finish my wrestling career.’”

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Sigman got the second chance at the National Preps Wrestling Southeast Regional wrestling tournament in Orlando, FL. The top four state finishers from Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina received automatic bids to the competition. Sigman earned an alternate spot with his top-six finish at the Georgia state tournament. Wrestlers above him dropped out, and Sigman got the call to compete.

“I found out on Tuesday, and the tournament was that Saturday,” Sigman said. “I wrestled fairly well, considering I hadn’t practiced or really done any wrestling work since state was over.”

Sigman wrestled his way to third place at the meet, automatically qualifying him for the National Preps Wrestling National Wrestling Tournament. The National tournament was the following weekend, held in Bethlehem, PA, and Sigman said he wasn’t able to go on short notice.

Sigmans’ father, and wrestling coach, Michael Sigman, was in Savannah, GA, for work the week leading up to the tournament. He was in Valdosta, GA, the night before the competition to support his daughter at a dance recital.

“I stayed [in Valdosta] Friday night,” Coach Sigman said. “Then drove up first thing the next morning, left about four in the morning just to make it to Orlando.”

Coach Sigman said he was most proud of Sigman for entering the tournament as an alternate and working through talented competition to reach his national-qualifying, 3rd-place finish.

“The guys that were there, especially from the school that hosted it, Highland Prep, were unreal,” Coach Sigman said. “That’s the best team I’ve seen all year. So it was kind of neat to see.”