Airline senior wrestler Scott Prouty had to watch from the sidelines because of injuries in 2014 as the Vikings won the first-ever Bossier Parish championships.
But on Saturday, Prouty had “just a separated shoudler.” He won all four of his matches by pinfall in the 132-pound weight class and was one of seven Airline individual champions to help the Vikings to a second straight team title.
“I have been training all week to make sure I protected it, and I didn’t hurt it all today,” Prouty said. “Coach (Joey Burton) had been telling me to keep my elbows tight and not to reach out.
“I’ve grown up with these guys I’ve wrestled with all my life, and I’m thrilled that I got to finish my last year with the guys that I’ve started wrestling with since first grade. We all won it together, and it’s great since I missed out on it last year because of injuries.”
Prouty will be a top-four seed at the Division I state wrestling championships starting Friday in Kenner.
Other Airline parish champions include Dalton Lambright (126 pounds), Antonio Lococo (138), Christian Walden (145), Matt Salinas (170), Keegan Gilligan (182) and Eric McGuire (220).
Champions from other schools include Bossier’s Jeremiah Rone (106 pounds), Bossier’s Avery Jones (160), Bossier’s Isaiah McKinsey Benton’s Hayden Shankle (113), Benton’s Chauncey Taylor (heavyweight), Haughton’s Dylan Holliday (120) and Parkway’s Zach Funderburk (152).
Three wrestlers are parish champions for the second straight year — Walden, Gilligan and Taylor.
The championships were set up in a dual-meet, round-robin format. Airline scored victories over Parkway (57-15), Bossier (47-30), Benton (63-18) and Haughton (42-33).
“It’s good because this is more of team atmosphere when you wrestle top to bottom in the lineup,” Burton said. “Opening this tournament up to the parish makes this a little more prestigious.
“This gives them those last couple of matches before the state championships, so it’s good to win this one.”
Bossier came in second overall with wins against Parkway (54-17), Haughton (42-30) and Benton (42-30).
Bossier’s Jones and McKinsey are potential state title threats, especially with Jones finishing as the runner-up in the 152-pound weight class to Benton’s Andre Dean II.
“Practice makes perfect, and we practice every day after school for at least two hours,” Jones said. “I wrestle all sorts of different weight classes to get my stamina up.
“I’ve learned a lot of different moves.”
Bo Shelton added that the Bearkats had their best meet of the season Saturday.
Haughton finished third with wins against Benton (42-33) and Parkway.
Benton topped Parkway for its only win.
Parkway’s Zach Funderburk won Division II state title at 145 pounds and will be a threat to win another one starting Friday.
Official state championship wrestling seeds will be determined Monday.