May 22, 2019

Medal finishes for three Braves at State Championships

Brave wrestlers at the Macon Centreplex Saturday following the 2019 GHSA State Championships (L-R): Senior Logan Moran, freshman Franklin Jackson, junior Wyn Denney, and senior Gage Cannon (Photo: Keri Denney)

(Macon, GA) – Three Heard County Brave varsity wrestlers earned medals after finishing in the top six in Class AA at the Centreplex in Macon this week at the 2019 GHSA Traditional State Wrestling Championship Meet.

One of the most exciting Georgia High School events of the year featured almost 500 wrestlers competing in all seven classifications under one the big roof of the Centreplex Arena.

An estimated crowd of over 5000 people witnessed the highs, the lows, and all the drama in between during the four day competition which started with the larger classifications on Wednesday and lasted all the way through the finals Saturday afternoon.

The Braves finished 11th in the Class AA team results with 35 points. Social Circle High School again dominated the classification claiming its fifth consecutive state crown after scoring 199 points to win handily over second place finisher Fitzgerald (136 points).

The Braves got off to strong start in the early round Thursday as all four competitors advanced to the quarterfinals in the bracket of 12.

Leading the way with the two strongest finishes of the tourney with fifth place finishes were senior Gage Cannon and freshman Franklin Jackson.

After falling via quick pinfall to the undefeated State Champion Gabriel Peryam (51-0) in the quarterfinals, Cannon battled back to win three of his final four matches of his varsity career to claim his school record third state medal.

Cannon (36-8) defeated Dylan Eidson (40-7) from Lamar County in Saturday’s final medal match-up. Cannon’s 128 career wins is also a new Heard County High School record.

Another history-making performance in Macon came from freshman grappler Franklin Jackson. Jackson claimed a fifth place medal at 113 pounds to become the first Brave freshman to ever medal on the state stage.

Like Cannon, Jackson (33-13) also fell to the eventual state champ in the semifinals as he was upended by Armuchee’s Wes Conley (27-2). Jackson went 3-2 overall defeating Nicholas Swan (60-9) from Rockmart via decision 11-7 in his fifth place match Saturday.

Jackson could be a strong contender over his next three years of high school after such a stellar rookie campaign.

Junior Wyn Denney continued his strong run to close the season with a sixth place finish at 182, his first state medal in his second attempt after also making the big dance as a freshman. Denney (29-13) started strong with a first round bye and a close 7-5 decision over Anthony Elliot (34-8) from Callaway before falling in Friday’s semifinals to senior State Champion Griffin Pace (67-3) from Rockmart.

Denney dropped a heartbreaking loss in overtime to senior Jack Bennett (46-9) from Pepperell in his final match. Elliot from Callaway battled back from his quarterfinal loss to Denney to score a third place medal.

Senior Logan Moran (34-8) just missed earning his second state medal in as many years after falling in the quarterfinals to Qwen Moss (13-9) from Early County in the heavyweight bracket. Moran had nice wins over Vidalia and Callaway to close out his successful varsity career.

Coach Kyle Yates and the Braves hope to continue to build the wrestling program in the years to come as a plethora of middle school talent move up the ranks to high school.

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