VERSAILLES — Woodford County junior Jordan Doyle said it's a tradition for the Yellowjackets to win the region wrestling title, "and when it doesn't happen, it's kinda weird."
Nothing weird happened in the 7th Region wrestling tournament on Saturday.
Host Woodford County, a 13-time state champion, won the team title in impressive fashion, racking up 223.5 points to runner-up Franklin County's 207.5. Henry Clay was third with 199.
Woodford County had seven wrestlers reach the finals, and six of them won, including 160-pound junior Wyatt Courtney, who was voted the tournament's outstanding wrestler.
Courtney said the Jackets' loss to Henry Clay in the region duals a few weeks ago "lit a fire under us. We wanted to make sure we got things right today. Things are back to normal. We won."
Woodford County had a mix of veterans and young guys push it to the top.
Besides Courtney, the Jackets' winners were seventh-grader Trevor Lawson (106) and his eighth-grade brother Kyle Lawson (132); undefeated junior Nathan Boston (113); eighth-grader Max Andreoni (138), and Doyle (152).
Woodford County got a runner-up finish from Tucker Hurst (120).
The top four wrestlers in each weight class advance to the state tournament at the Kentucky Horse Park's Alltech Arena next week.
"It's always nice to win the region; it's something we always point to," Woodford County Coach Joe Carr Jr. said. "It's always tough when you have a setback like (losing in the duals), but the guys came back and worked hard, and it showed today."
Lexington had three individual champs: Henry Clay junior Mike Whalen (120), and Lafayette freshmen Angel Vasquez (126) and Landon Young (285).
Whalen won the state title at 106 last year, but he moved up two weight classes this season. He said it's been a challenge because his opponents are "bigger and stronger, and I've had to work on getting stronger myself."
Vasquez, who was third in the region last year as an eighth-grader, was all smiles after his winning easily (23-9) in the 126 finals on Saturday. "I was really nervous, but now I'm really excited," he said.
Young, who at 6-foot-7, 240 pounds doesn't look like a freshman, outdueled Madison Central senior Paul Couch and won 3-1 in the under-285-pound class.
"I've worked hard for this," Young said. "I've still got a lot to learn, but I'm going to work hard to get there."
Seven Lexington wrestlers were runners-up: Bryan Station's Anthony Smith (138); Henry Clay's David Hernandez (106), Nathan Moore (182), Joe Tafolla (195) and Zack Cooper (220); Lafayette's Luke Rearic (113), and Tates Creek Bryan Chi (170).
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