2017-18 COVINGTON BUCCANEERS
Covington is coming off another solid season, finishing with an 18-5 dual meet record with a loss in the regional quarterfinals to eventual state champion Mechanicsburg. The Buccs finished with an overall tournament record of 150-60 with strong finishes at the Troy, Miami Trace and Lima Central Catholic Invitationals. Covington finished 2nd in the Cross-County Conference last season.
The team placed 5th out of 19 teams at Sectionals, with 5 district qualifiers (Lance Miller, Deron White, Keringten Martin, Riley Richards and Dolan Young), and 10th out of 63 teams at Districts, with two district placers – Lance Miller and Keringten Martin. Lance qualified to state as a district champion and advanced to the championship bout – just the 5th time in school history that Covington has been represented in the state finals. He finished as a state runner-up after a one point loss. The Buccs have now had at least one state placer in twelve of the past thirteen seasons.
The Buccs lost a great group of seniors to graduation – state placer Lance Miller, district qualifiers Josh Sowers and Deron White, and Ross Bowman, Luke Grieshop and Carl Lankford, but return a number of talented wrestlers. Covington will be led by seniors Kyle Barga and Bryce Keiser, along with juniors Keringten Martin, Gavin McReynolds, Cody Nickels and Riley Richards. Martin is a returning district placer while Richards is a returning district qualifier.
The sophomore class includes Austin Flick, Joseph Franke, Seth Iddings, Gage Kerrigan, Fletcher Metz, Dylan Staudt and Taylen Viney. Rounding out the roster are freshmen Trentin Alexander, Kellan Anderson, Grant Babylon, Hunter Clarkson, Duncan Cooper, Logan Lowe, David Robinson, Deacon Shields, Bryce Smith, Clayton Stephan, Gavin Swank and Cael Vanderhorst.
Covington looks forward to competing with the mix of Division 1, 2 and 3 teams that are on their schedule. The Buccs return to two prestigious mega-tournaments: the 52-team GMVWA Holiday tournament and the 38-team Lima Central Catholic (LCC) Invitational. They will also compete in the Northeastern, Versailles and Troy Invitationals. Covington will once again square off with some of the top dual-meet teams in the western part of the state, including Versailles, Eaton, Miami East and Coldwater. Additionally, the JV team will travel to some very competitive reserve meets including Versailles, Ben Logan, Sidney and Vandalia-Butler.
Covington has three home duals and will once again host the Covington Duals tournament – which includes their Cross County Conference rivals, along with Lehman. The Buccs will compete again in the OHSAA team dual meet tournament and then host the Division 3 sectional tournament – whose participants have proven to be among the most successful among all divisions in Ohio at the state tournament over the past several years.
ANDERSON, VANDERHORST PLACE AT STATE
Four Covington wrestlers qualified for state and two earned state medals in what was another great weekend for Buccaneer wrestling. Kellan Anderson finished sixth at 106 pounds and Cael Vanderhorst took eighth at 113 pounds, while Keringten Martin (152) and Gage Kerrigan (195) gained valuable experience on the biggest stage of high school wrestling.
TOM BARBEE GOES INTO COACHES HALL OF FAME
For 42 years Tom Barbee gave all he had to Covington Schools as a teacher and a coach in the sports of football, track and wrestling. Wrestling, however, is where Barbee is most recognized due to the accomplishments of his program over his 28 years as head wrestling coach (1981-1989 and 1999-2017). For his accomplishments, Barbee was elected into the Ohio High School Wrestling Coaches Hall of Fame at the 81st Annual State Wrestling Championships on Saturday at the Jerome Schottenstein Center on the campus of The Ohio State University in Columbus.