The New Albany High School wrestling team will be represented by just one athlete at the Division I district tournament Friday and Saturday at Hilliard Darby.

The New Albany High School wrestling team will be represented by just one athlete at the Division I district tournament Friday and Saturday at Hilliard Darby.

Matt Odierno (215 pounds) was the only Eagle to advance out of the sectional tourna-ment last Saturday at Watkins Memorial.

The top four in each weight class at district advance to the state tournament March 4-6 at Ohio State.

Odierno (27-7) opens district against Marshall Knoch (10-6) of Hilliard Davidson. The top four wrestlers in Odierno's weight class are Marysville's Nate Weeks (41-5), Pickerington North's Alex Lamancusa (36-3), Mount Vernon's Dane Cullen (34-3) and Springboro's Ryan Jackson (31-6). Weeks, who was fourth at state last season, defeated Odierno by a 15-0 technical fall in the championship match last Saturday at sectional.

Odierno is a first-time district qualifier.

"Making it to state has been a goal of mine all year, so I'm just going to do what it takes to get there," Odierno said.

Though there is no shortage of quality wrestlers in the 215 weight class, New Albany coach Marc Cofer likes Odierno's chances.

"Matt didn't start for us last year, so he's kind of flying under the radar, which is what we like," Cofer said. "He backed up (John) Korth last year, so not a lot of people know about him and maybe they'll be overlooking him.

"He definitely has the ability to get there, but like I've said before, you've got to have some luck, you've got to be wrestling your best and you've got to get some good matchups."

Last Saturday, the Eagles' lack of experience showed at a tough sectional. New Albany finished 11th (42 points) behind champion Marysville (243) with 13 teams scoring.

Nate Peck placed sixth at 119 after being pinned by Worthington Kilbourne's Nick Varazashvili in 2 minutes, 54 seconds in the fifth-place match. Kody Doyle was sixth at 145 after losing to Logan Hansford.

The top four in each weight class advanced to district.

Having a young team, Cofer knew the Eagles would have some struggles at sectional.

"We knew it was going to be a tough weekend and that some of the guys would have a chance through the consolations," Cofer said. "We did have a few kids that came up a little short, and that's the thing about this weekend. You've got to take advantage of your opportunity and that just didn't happen."

This was the first year New Albany competed in Division I, which includes elite programs in Marysville and Teays Valley.

"I expect there's some things we've got to do in the offseason to prepare ourselves for next year," Cofer said. "The thing is we've got everybody coming back, and that is one good thing."

At a glance

Below are the recent results and coming schedules for the New Albany wrestling team:

Last Saturday -- Finished 11th (42 points) behind champion Marysville (243) at Division I sectional tournament

Saturday -- At Division I district tournament at Hilliard Darby