By Kris Freeman, Sports Information Director
FRANKLIN – White House seniors Ethan Rainey and Taylor Whitehurst will be wrestling a winner-take-all match at the Williamson County Ag Expo Center on Saturday for the right to be called a state champion.
Both wrestlers advanced to the TSSAA State Championship Finals for wrestling after Friday’s impressive performance at the state tournament. Watch the finals here on the NFHS Network and the TSSAA.
Introductions begin at 4 p.m. at the Williamson County Ag Expo Center and then finals wrestling starts at 4:30 p.m. with the lowest classes first. Rainey will be wrestling in the 220-pound Class A/AA final on Mat 8. Whitehurst will be wrestling in the 150-pound Girls final on Mat 6.
White House senior Rhiley Burton finished the state tournament with a 1-2 record, but was eliminated from the consolation bracket in his third match on Friday.
Rainey is 3-0 for the tournament in the 16-wrestler field, and Whitehurst is 2-0 in the eight-girl bracket.
Rainey ran through his three matches to get to the state title with the toughest coming in the semifinals.
Rainey defeated junior Donavyn Walker of Chattanooga Central in a pinfall of 3:45 in the round of 16, then beat senior Xion Dixon of Cascade by pinfall in 1:49.
For the semifinal match, he faced undefeated (33-0) senior Noah Evans of Alcoa. The match was tight until Rainey added a pinfall in the third period and won 7-5 by decision.
Rainey was a state finalist two years ago but no boys wrestler has won a state championship. Senior Elijah Zweydorff lost in the state championship match in the 285-pound division last year.
Whitehurst defeated freshman Maggie Kite of Science Hill in the opening round with a pinfall of 4:26. In the semifinals, she defeated junior Haley Roberts of Tullahoma with a pinfall in 5:24.
She will face undefeated junior Vivian Hurn of Montgomery Central in the final. Hurn is 17-0 for the season and defeated Whitehurst in the regional final two weeks ago. The 1-2 seeds in the Girls West Region are now meeting again for the state championship match.
Whitehurst was a finalist in 2018, but no White House wrestler has even won a state title.