Arlington ISD’s 23rd Annual Turkey Takedown. Photo by Cody Thorn

On the Mat: Highlights from the 23rd Annual Turkey Takedown Wrestling Championship

Coming off a fifth-place finish at last year’s Class 5A finals, Melissa started the 2023-24 wrestling season on a high note.

Melissa racked up 154 ½ points at the Arlington ISD’s 23rd Annual Turkey Takedown held at the Arlington ISD Athletics Center, in the shadows of AT&T Stadium.

Fort Worth Chisholm Trail (113), Midlothian (110), Azle, Dallas Woodrow Wilson (109) followed in the team standings. There were 25 boys teams at the event on Saturday, including JV teams. The day prior, there was a varsity and JV girls tournament.

Photo Gallery – Photos by: Cody Thorn

Melissa had six wrestlers place in the top four including a trio of champions despite Iowa commit Angelo Ferrari not competing.

Gunner Morris, a transfer from Princeton, won the 132-pound title for the Cardinals. He won two by pins and two matches by decision, including 4-2 against Wyatt Hicks of Azle in the finals – a battle of 120-pound state qualifiers last year.

Brayden Manibog (157) and Gage Herrin (165) won back-to-back titles for the Cardinals.

Manibog (4-0) pinned Fort Worth Paschal’s Ryan Dyer in the finals in the second period. Manibog pinned his way to the title.

Wrestler Interviews

Herrin, a freshman, knocked off senior Mike Gilreath from Evangel Christian Academy from Shreveport, Louisiana in the finals by a pin in 2:43. Three of Herrin’s fourins were by pins.

Allen, Midlothian and Chisholm Trail all had multiple champions as well.

The Chisholm Trail Rangers got titles from Ethan Orat (120), Christian Clark (215), and Travis Guillot (285). Orat went 3-0 and ended with a 6-4 win over Amiel Sanchez of Dallas Wilson.

Clark went 4-0 – with all pins – and improved to 6-0 on the season. Guillot split his day with two pins and two decisions – winning 5-2 against Collin Cook of Midlothian.

At 106, Allen’s Maddux Tindal got a forfeit win over teammate Gianni Diaz with the freshman Tindal going 4-0 in his first varsity action. Another freshman, Cayden Campbell, won the 113-pound crown for the Eagles. He pinned Dallas Wilson senior Max Cramer-Percox in 1:01 in the first-place match.

Midlothian, eighth in Class 5A last year, had two champions.

Returning 120-pound state qualifier Joshua Ramirez won the 126-pound division with a 4-0 mark. He won three by decision, including a 4-3 win over William Braud of Dallas Wilson.

Air Force pledge Karson Tompkins picked up where he left off last year – winning in big ways. The 5A 190-pound champion went 4-0 with all four pins – three of those four came in the first period.

Tompkins is 5-0 this year and is now 114-3 in his career with a pair of state titles – aiming for a third.

Other champions:

Azle’s Chase Yancey (138); Arlington Lamar’s Anthony Simpson (144); Trophy Club’s Byron Nelson’s Jaime Careaga (150) and Luke Wilson of Fort Worth Paschal (175).

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Written by Cody Thorn

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