Imro’s T.J. Dudley was named the outstanding wrestler at the Palmetto State Classic Tournament last weekend.
The talented sophomore upset Lugoff-Elgin’s Will Connell 9-5 in the 171-pound title match after pinning three straight opponents to reach the finals. Dudley, who finished fourth at 171 at the Class 4A state tournament last season, defeated Connell, who won the 3A state championship at 171 a year ago, 9-5 in the first-place showdown.
Dudley’s title run helped the host Yellow Jackets finish sixth in the final team standings with 118 points.
Senior Kyle Manross was Irmo’s other individual champ at the high-profile early season event. Manross, a state runner-up last season at 119, went 4-0 on the way to a PSC win at 125. He prevailed 8-2 in the title bout and had two pins in his four outings.
Dudley and Manross were the only Jackets to place, but Louis Biles, Blaine Bryant, Brandon Corley and Myles Gardner all performed well while helping 15th-ranked Irmo perform perhaps a bit better than expected in the new season’s first big event.
Corley (152 and Gardner (285) both went 3-2 and lost in the consolation semifinals. Biles (103) and Corley both went 2-2 and also came up just short of placing, losing in the consolation semifinals.