Utica Ford II wrestlers focused going into state finals
WARREN — Utica Ford II senior 140-pound wrestler Tevin Machart has made a name for himself on the mat.
He has won two championships at the Macomb County Wrestling Invitational and earned All-State honors the last two seasons with strong showings at the Michigan High School Athletic Association state finals.
The only thing missing from Machart’s trophy case seems to be a state title. He finished fifth in his weight class last year. The top eight wrestlers in each weight class in Division 1-4 earn All-State honors.
Machart will vie for that elusive state title Feb. 27-March 1 at The Palace of Auburn Hills. He enters the state finals with a 50-1 record.
“I just have to get it done,” said Machart, one of four Falcons wrestlers who qualified for the state finals. “I have to get better in the next week and a half, and I have to win a state title.”
Machart is confident he can navigate his way through the 140-pound field back to Davidson senior Justin Oliver, who handed the Ford II standout his only loss in a regional Final Feb. 15.
“I think I’ll see (Oliver) again,” Machart said. “I know what I need to improve on.”
Ford II senior 160-pounder Aaron Wells is making his second trip to the state finals. He said wrestlers should use the time in between regionals and the state finals to push themselves to the limit to improve.
Wells also said the state finals are unpredictable.
“You can get taken down in the first 30 seconds of a match,” said Wells, who will take a 42-6 mark into the state finals. “You see state champions get taken down quickly and lose the chance to repeat early on. Anything can happen at the state finals.”
Falcons senior 152-pounder Victor Gegic (45-10) and sophomore 135-pounder Michael Wells (27-11) are making their first trips to the state finals. Each wrestler set a goal of advancing to the state finals this season and said earning All-State status would be a great accomplishment.
Gegic admitted earning All-State honors would be a moment he’ll never forget because he wasn’t expecting to make this run at the outset.
Michael Wells said earning All-State honors could set him up for future success. He said ending up on the podium would set the standard for what he would have to live up to next season.
Machart wants to end his prep career with his hand raised high.
“I’d be ecstatic to go out (winning a state title),” Machart said. “No one wants to go out losing their last match their senior year.”
For pairings and match times, check www.mhsaa.com.