CENTERBURG — Centerburg High School was selected in December to host the Division III Region 21 regional wrestling dual team tournament set for Saturday, and the school is preparing to host 15 teams.

“We had to make sure we had the facilities to do it, and I believe we do,” Centerburg athletic director Rich Porter said.

Being selected started with an e-mail asking which schools could operate four mats, and then it was up to the school to decide if they could support such a big event. In December, Porter got the notice that his school would host and the planning began. The Trojans had to switch their home boys basketball game with Danville. Centerburg was originally supposed to host the Blue Devils Friday, but the two teams switched home games so the gym will be open for preparations Friday.

With the weekend cleared of any scheduling conflicts, setting up will begin Friday, with wrestlers and volunteers setting up two mats in both the high school and middle school gyms. In addition to mats, tables will be set up for scorers and time-keepers, with an extra station in the high school gym for all of the computer work to keep results updated online. When the doors to the school close Friday night, the facilities will be ready to support 15 teams Saturday.

For the day of the event, Porter had to find volunteers to help run all of the tables, a few volunteers to run concessions and additional hands to support the hospitality room for coaches, officials and workers. When Porter put in to host the event, he checked to make sure he could round up the staff and once selected, he just had to solidify numbers.

“I couldn’t do this without the wrestling parents,” Porter said. “Hosting an event like this would not be possible without the help of volunteers. They’re the ones that really make it go.”

The doors open at 7 a.m. Saturday, with ticket sales starting at 7:30 a.m. Weigh-ins are at 8 a.m. and the wrestling action is slated for 9 a.m. The single elimination tournament will be split between the four mats, one of which is borrowed from Highland. After the first two rounds, when only four teams remain in the semi-finals, the mats in the middle school will be broken down and the rest of the wrestling — the semi-finals and finals — will be completed in the high school.

Centerburg’s Knox-Morrow Athletic Conference foe, Northmor, comes in as the second seed and will wrestle No. 15 Fairbanks in the opening round. The Trojans, as the 13th seed, take on No. 4 Pleasant and No. 12 Utica competes against fifth-seeded North Union in the first round.


Erick Starkey: 740-397-5333 or and on Twitter, @MVNStarkey




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