The Reynoldsburg High School wrestling team will take part in the Brecksville Invitational at Brecksville-Broadview Heights on Monday and Tuesday, giving the Raiders a chance to see the top competition from across the state as well as three of the top teams from Georgia.

The Reynoldsburg High School wrestling team will take part in the Brecksville Invitational at Brecksville-Broadview Heights on Monday and Tuesday, giving the Raiders a chance to see the top competition from across the state as well as three of the top teams from Georgia.

It will be the fifth year the Raiders have competed in the tournament. Last season, Reynoldsburg finished 23rd (74.5) in a 43-team field behind champion Troy Christian (166). Tommy Sasfy (135 pounds) and Jordan Marrero (heavyweight) finished eighth in their weight classes.

This year's field is strong. There are 105 returning state-qualifiers and 13 state champions expected to wrestle.

"It's a good gauge to see where we're at as a team, what we need to work on and what we can improve upon," said coach Jason Allen, whose team finished sixth with 128 points in the Cincinnati Coaches Classic last Saturday as Cincinnati Moeller won with 217.5. "I look at these big tournaments and the entire season as practice for the postseason. My coaching really takes place after Christmas.

"With the individual approach I take, we look at the kids with a system we have. We look at the other teams and where we're getting beat at, and it's different for every kid. So that's when we start seeing progression for the kids."

Though the focus for Allen and Reynoldsburg is on developing the individual, he said he would like to see the team place higher than last season. The tournament is used as a tool for Allen and the rest of the coaching staff to evaluate each individual to start developing progression plans for each of them, but he said that process already has begun.

"I feel like we're already starting to progress a bit," Allen said. "Right now, though, we don't want our guys to be in tip-top shape and wrestling superb because that's something they can't sustain from now through the end of the season."

The Raiders had four wrestlers place at the Brecksville-Broadview Heights tournament last year, but Allen said there could be as many as six to finish in the top eight this year.

Sasfy has moved up to 140, and Allen said he believes the senior is primed for his best season.

"We've got Tommy at 140 and I feel he's ready to make his mark, not only at Brecksville but at the state level as well," Allen said. "He's put his time, paid his dues and he's ready to roll."

"I want to get higher up on the podium than I did last year," Sasfy said.

The other wrestlers Allen said could do well include Josh Knight (112), Isaiah Allen (130), Brandon Martin (152), Christian Tennant (171), Jeremy Cook (189) and Marrero. Sasfy won in Cincinnati, with Marrero being runner-up. Cook and Josh Nein (112) both lost in semifinals.

"I didn't place last year so my whole goal this year is to place," Allen said. "For the team we just want to get as many people on the podium as we can."

The Raiders expected to be tested by the best competition from the southeastern part of the state.

"My philosophy is we're going to prepare for the best so when our guys hit the postseason they've seen the best and know what to expect," Allen said.

"Wrestling at this tournament better prepares you for (the postseason)," Sasfy said. "After this it makes the sectional and district feel like a joke."