2020 Wrestling Team State Finals Prep: Hart

This is the second in a series of six stories previewing the 2020 MHSAA team wrestling state finals. 

HART – After a 30-year absence, the Hart wrestling program is returning to the MHSAA team state quarterfinals.

As the fourth-seed, the Pirates (33-3) will face fifth-seed Manchester (35-2) in a Division 4 quarterfinal at noon Friday at Kalamazoo’s Wings Event Center.

Hart is back in the quarterfinals after recording postseason wins over Pine River (34-25), Mason County Central (63-12), Mancelona (78-6) and Whittemore-Prescott (49-14).

“The chemistry with this group of kids is what they’ve improved on the most,” Hart coach Brad Altland said. “They’ve stepped up and filled some holes. We had some really good kids last year, but these young individuals have stepped up and filled those holes and kept them together as a group. Somebody’s always stepped up when somebody’s had a bad day. It’s through the whole season and it makes a huge difference.”

Hart is making its seventh appearance in the state finals after reaching the finals six times between 1980-90.

Manchester is making its second straight Division 4 state quarterfinal appearance. A Division 4 state runner-up in 2008, the Flying Dutchmen picked up postseason victories over Vandercook Lake (81-0), Grass Lake (71-12), Dansville (72-6) and Springport (58-14).

In addition to the team state finals, the Pirates are sending 10 wrestlers to the individual state finals that will take place March 6-7 at Detroit’s Ford Field.

Friday’s quarterfinal is set for noon. The winner will face either top-seed and three-time defending state champion Hudson (22-6) or eight-seed Onaway (11-14) in a semifinal Saturday at 9:30 a.m.

Categories: Wrestling