OKLAHOMA CITY — D.J. Hendrickson ended a frustrating weekend for Piedmont’s wrestling team at the Class 5A State Tournament with a dominant victory that helped the Wildcats exit on a high note, after PHS entered 10 wrestlers, but placed only two.
Hendrickson, who missed most of the season after breaking his ankle in the preseason, earned a 9-1 major decision over Ryce Haymaker of Collinsville in the third place match at 138 pounds to become one of two Wildcats to place. It was a solid end for the team and Hendrickson, who battled back after a narrow one-point defeat in the semifinals Friday.
Hendrickson, a senior, took an early 5-0 lead after a take down and three near fall points against Haymaker, then held on, admitting he never got into his best shape after the injury.
“I busted my butt everyday to get here and make my family proud,” Hendrickson said. “I have to score first to win matches because I’m not in great shape. I was able to do that today.”
Head coach Erik Ford said it took toughness for Hendrickson to finish strong despite his team struggling to gain traction at any time through the weekend. Read more →