There are 12 teams lined up from across the region to participate in the annual Battler Wrestling Tournament on Saturday. Last year’s tournament was one of the biggest in several years, with 22 teams coming to town. The Covid-19 restrictions have changed that.
“We had to cut back from 22 schools to 12 to meet the Covid restrictions,” said Vern Smith, Activities Director at the Gettysburg School. He said the current plan is to wrestle on two mats in the new gym starting at 10 a.m. Currently the school is at Tier One, which has masks required and unlimited attendance for most activities. However, when there are 12 teams involved he said there will be some limitations.
The first session begins at 10 a.m. on Jan. 16 in the Gettysburg High School gym. The championship session will take place after the wrestle backs are done.
Schools participating in this year’s tournament in addition to the Potter County Battlers are Deuel, Faulkton, Groton, Ipswich/Bowdle, Lemmon/McIntosh, Stanley County, Sully Buttes, Sunshine Bible, Warner/Northwestern, Webster, and Wessington Springs/Woonsocket/Wolsey-Wessington
The tournament will place the top six finishers in each class, and team trophies will be awarded to the first and second place teams in the tournament. This year there is a female bracket with three girls scheduled to compete so far, in addition for a 95 pound weight class for the boys.
See inside for results from the weekend tournament, along with news from the young AAU wrestlers. The AAU will host their Battler wrestling tournament on Sunday, Jan. 17 at the school gym.