Nine B-U wrestlers, (including Ian Cornett shown here) will compete at states after the Region I Championships were held this past Sunday at Bridgeport. (Bobbie Hatcher/My Buckhannon)

Cornett, Garcia, McDowell win regional championships, Bucs sending nine to states

BRIDGEPORT – Three Buckhannon-Upshur Buccaneers won Region 1 Championships and a total of six Bucs, and three Lady Bucs will compete in the West Virginia State Championships next week after the regional tournament held in Bridgeport this past weekend was over.

The tournament was scheduled for Saturday but bad weather pushed it to Sunday morning.

Winning regional titles for the Bucs were Ian Cornett (113 pounds), Liam Garcia (120 pounds) and Andrew McDowell (138 pounds).

Cornett received a first-round bye, pinned Carrington Polus of Wheeling Park in the semifinals and then pinned University’s Kaden Nieman in the title scrap.

Garcia pinned Maddox Long of Brooke in his opening match, pinned Jake Carman of Wheeling Park in the semis and pinned Timmy Husk of University in the finals. It was the second regional title for Garcia who will be making his fourth showing at the state tournament.

McDowell pinned Larry Du of Morgantown in his opener, won a 13-1 major decision over Kaden Harding of John Marshall in the semis and pinned Gavin Garlits of Preston in the title match.

“Cornett dominated his weight class, Garcia is a man on a mission as he pinned his way through the tournament and McDowell suffered a loss to Gartlis last week in the Big 10 championships, but he got the better of him in dominant fashion this weekend,” stated Buckhannon-Upshur head coach Jacob Orr.

Jeremy Jett (106 pounds) and Oscar Blonn both punched their tickets to states with third-place finishes at regionals.

Jett received a first-round bye then lost a 3-1 decision to Joey Rea of Brooke. He rebounded to pin Brady Davis of Morgantown and pinned Anderson Sauceedo of Bridgeport in the match for third place.

Blonn won his opener by pin over Blake Jennings of Preston but lost by fall to Ryder Hastings of University. He came back to pin Isaac Swauger of John Marshall and pin Michael Burkhart of Morgantown in the battle for third place.

“Jett will be making his first appearance in the state tournament,” noted Orr. “He lost a close match in the semis but battled back in the to finish third and Blonn is going to states after finishing third.”

Jeremiah Thompson (175 pounds) finished fourth with a 2-2 record to land his spot in the state tournament.

“Jeremiah maybe had the most impressive showing,” stated Orr. “He was not seeded but knocked off the No. 5 kid in the state (Brooke’s Gavin Moore) with an impressive 14-3 major decision.”

The rest of the Bucs competing were Evan McDowell (144 pounds) placing sixth with a 1-3 mark and Chance Morgan (165 pounds) and Breyer Jackson (285 pounds) both going 0-2.

As a team, the Bucs finished fourth with 122 points despite forfeiting five weight classes.

University won the team title with 257.5 points while Wheeling Park was second with 176.5 points and John Marshall was third with 151.5 points.

“Everyone came out and took care of business,” concluded Orr. “From top to bottom, we wrestled really well. We had 10 guys competing and six of them are going to states. I was proud of how they didn’t let the change in dates affect them. I am super pumped for the team, but the job isn’t done. Regionals are now in the past, we have need to refocus on states and keep getting better.”

On the girls’ side, the Lady Bucs will be sending Maya Garcia, Emma McGinnis and Bri Howes to states, which their state tournament will take place for the first time together with the boys’ tournament. This will be the second appearances at states for Howes and Garcia and the first for McGinnis.

The state tournament will begin for both the boys and girls on Feb. 29 in Huntington.


  1. University 257.5; 2. Wheeling Park 176.5; 3. John Marshall 151.5; 4. Buckhannon-Upshur 122; 5. Preston 112; 6. Brooke 103.5; 7. Bridgeport 96; 8. Morgantown 83.5.


106 pounds – Jeremy Jett (Third Place)

113 pounds – Ian Cornett (Champion)

120 pounds – Liam Garcia (Champion)

138 pounds – Andrew McDowell (Champion)

175 pounds – Jeremiah Thompson (Fouth Place)

215 pounds – Oscar Blonn (Third Place)

114 pounds – Bri Howes

132 pounds – Maya Garcia

165 pounds – Emma McGinnis

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