Prep Wrestling: Bulldogs seek deep playoff run after winning third straight CCC crown

Jan. 31, 2014 @ 04:59 PM

Thomasville High School may be best known for its rich tradition in football, but over the past few years Richard Herman has quietly made the Bulldogs a perennial power on the wrestling mat.
For a third consecutive year, THS can call themselves Central Carolina Conference champions. They have dominated their league opponents as well as many others across the state with a sparkling 37-4 record. With the latest run of success, it would be hard to believe the program was struggling not long ago.
“It all goes back to the commitment of the kids,” said Herman. “We have changed the culture around here and have done a good job of getting kids out to wrestle. The kids are becoming successful and they are willing to work hard to keep that going.”
A state quarterfinalist last season, the Bulldogs fell to eventual state champion Newton-Conover.
On Tuesday, the state playoffs will begin and Herman would like to have another shot at the Red Devils. To get that chance, THS must advance in the first and second rounds. Thomasville will wrestle the Rocker River No. 2 seed, with the winner advancing to the second round immediately following. The other first round match will feature a wild card team against the Western Piedmont Athletic's top seed.
“I think we have improved a lot from last year when we wrestled Newton-Conover,” said Herman. “We are getting there. I do not know if it will be this time we win it, but we are definitely getting better.”
Herman sets two goals for his grapplers each season. The first is to win a conference championship. Second, to finish in the top 10 of the state. One has already been checked off the list. Two wins on Tuesday will secure the second goal.
“What I am most proud of is the consistency we are building and that we are changing the outlook of Davidson County wrestling,” said Herman. “We have a great tradition. We are just trying to keep it going.”

Sports Editor Zach Kepley can be reached at 888-3631, or kepley@tvilletimes.com.