2020 Wrestling Team State Finals Prep: Onaway

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

ONAWAY – The Onaway wrestling program is returning to the MHSAA team state finals for a third straight year.

As the eighth-seed, Onaway (11-14) will face three-time defending state champion and top-seed Hudson (22-6) in a Division 4 quarterfinal at noon Friday at Kalamazoo’s Wings Event Center.

Onaway punched its quarterfinal ticket with wins over Pellston (69-6), Rogers City (49-21), Bark River-Harris (48-31) and Ishpeming-Westwood (48-28).

The Cardinals have battled through adversity this season, having wrestled a number of duals with only five wrestlers due to injuries.

“Our philosophy is anybody can be beat on any day. And that’s what our focus is,” Onaway coach Mark Grant said. “David-Goliath, if you want to look at it that way again, that’s fine. But at the end of the day, we’re going down there to wrestle hard, have fun and see what happens.”

Friday’s quarterfinal is rematch of a 2018 quarterfinal that saw Hudson come away with a 75-3 win.

“I’m preparing for probably one of our toughest duels all year, definitely,” Onaway senior Matthew Grant said. “They’re the most well-rounded team we’re going to see. We saw them my sophomore year. And I definitely wrestled a few of their kids personally, so I know any Hudson kid at any weight class will be pretty tough.”

An eight-time state champion, Hudson recorded postseason wins over Pittsford (72-3), Reading (62-12), Bronson (52-21) and Addison (45-24).

In addition to the team state finals, the Cardinals are sending four 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 fourth-seed Hart (33-3) or fifth-seed Manchester (35-2) in a semifinal Saturday at 9:30 a.m.

Categories: Wrestling