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Wrestling: Four Forsyth County wrestlers win state titles
North Forsyth senior Dylan Lyerly has his arm raised Jan. 22 during the Class 7A duals state championship against Camden County. - photo by David Roberts

Members of the media were not allowed on the mat to take photos, according to Georgia High School Association Associate Director Don Corr. Only photographers contracted by the GHSA were allowed access.

MACON — Thomas Dossett needed just five seconds to break out of Anthony Yancey's grasp during the third overtime period of Saturday's Class 7A 285-pound state championship match.

Admittedly, he spent the final 25 seconds wondering when Yancey would retaliate and throw him to the mat.

But Dossett never allowed that retaliation to come, denying Yancey's last-ditch shots to capture the state title at heavyweight and become Lambert's first individual champion in six years.

Dossett, who reached the championship match every year since his sophomore season, wrestled more as a true heavyweight this year after making the jump from 220 pounds last season.

“I was pretty light and fast last year, but then I got picked up with one arm in the finals, so I decided I needed to gain some weight," Dossett said. "I was a little slower, but it all worked out.”

THOMAS DOSSETT - photo by David Roberts
Dossett is one of four state champions from Forsyth County, joining West Forsyth's Reed Walker [113 pounds] and Noah Danforth [126], and North Forsyth's Dylan Lyerly [195 pounds].

North's Tristan Graham [182] and Denmark's Mariana Perez [122] each finished as a state runner-up. 

Perez made history by becoming the first Danes' wrestler to reach the girls finals.

“It feels very, very great. I’m very proud of myself, but I’m also a bit disappointed because I feel like I let everybody down," Perez said. "But I know next year is going to be my year, hopefully. We’ll see what happens.”

MARIANA PEREZ - photo by David Roberts
Perez raced through the first three rounds Friday, pinning Fitzgerald's Brianna Hill before winning 10-5 against Chestatee's Dorothy Gerrell to reach the semifinals, where she scored an 8-4 win against McEachern's Anastasia Georges.

Perez used an early takedown in the finals to take control, but Alexander's Meta Xayabouth-Jones scored a reversal and tacked on a nearfall to grab the lead, ultimately winning 7-2.

Perez, a sophomore at Denmark, is in just her second year wrestling.

“My brother used to wrestle when he was in high school and I was in middle school," Perez said. "I saw this girl at one of the tournaments and she was dominating all the guys. I told my mom, ‘I have to be like her. I have to be like her.’”

Lyerly won the second state championship of his high school career, also winning at 220 pounds as a sophomore.

NOAH DANFORTH - photo by David Roberts
Lyerly fought through injuries this season, ultimately coming out on top Saturday with a 5-2 victory against Collins Hill's Richard Ransom.

Lyerly nearly pinned Ransom in the second period, but the Collins Hill senior rolled off his back to avoid the fall, though not before Lyerly had racked up a quick three points off a nearfall.

Walker and Danforth each won a title after finishing as a runner-up last season.

Additionally, both bouts were rematches of last week's sectional championship. Walker pinned Lowndes' Hunter McCullough last week and won 4-0 on Saturday. Danforth, however, captured a 2-1 win over Colquitt County's Ethan Sellers after falling via pin against Sellers last week.

This time around, Danforth scored a takedown with 57 seconds left and held on to win 2-1, becoming West's second state champion of the day.

REED WALKER - photo by David Roberts
“I just redeemed myself for last year, because I’m more patient and not as nervous,” he said.

Walker caps a dominant sophomore season that saw the 113-pound wrestler lose just one match.

West finished third as a team, collecting 84 1/2 points while North followed in fourth with 83 points and Lambert secured a ninth-place finish with 57 1/2 points.

North's Tristan Graham [182] reached the championship round but suffered a narrow 6-4 loss to Mountain View's Armond Jones.

Four wrestlers finished third in the state, including West's Noah Amick [120], who won 14-10 against North Paulding's Kade Brown in the third-place match. North's Bentley Wheeler [145) won 13-5 against Lambert's Dylan Lobdell, while South Forsyth's Cole Williams [195] won 13-3 over Peachtree Ridge's Ryan Ackovic, and West's Jay Helstone (220) pinned Lowndes' Grant Laskey in the first period.

Williams, a junior, collected his 100th career pin during Friday's rounds.

Forsyth Central's Luke Sacchetti [285] lost 5-2 to South Gwinnett's Damion Clark in the third-place match to finish fourth in the state.