By CAREY FOX
Times Sports Editor
Jacob Hendrich, a fifth-grader at Staunton Elementary, became an All American wrestler last weekend with his efforts at the Tennessee Elementary National Duals.
Hendrich, wrestling for Team Indiana, has wrestled for the national team previously, but this was by far his best finish as he went 7-2 in the tourney.
Competing in the 100-pound weight class, Hendrich competed against some of the top wrestlers in the nation with Team Indiana.
In a 64-18 team victory over South Carolina, Hendrich cruised to a 15-0 technical fall and followed that with a pin against Florida as the team won 70-10. Against Illinois United, Hendrich was trailing 4-0 in the third period before rallying back to score a fall as Team Indiana fell 50-34.
Against Pennsylvania United, Hendrich scored from the bottom for a third period escape point to post a 7-6 victory that gave his opponent his only loss of the entire tournament. Hendrich and Team Indiana took on Iowa Black, where he fell behind 4-2 before getting caught and pinned. Hendrich's opponent finished second in the Iowa state finals at 105 pounds and was fourth in the nation in the same weight class. He bounced back to record a win via fall against North Carolina as the team won 86-6.
Team Indiana finished its pool matches with a 4-2 mark and qualified for the Gold Bracket, which was reserved for the top-eight teams.
Facing off against Pennsylvania's Blue Team, Hendrich battled his way to a 2-0 victory and added a 5-2 victory against Illinois United. In his final match of the tourney, Hendrich squared off against a bigger opponent and held him scoreless until the third period before giving up an escape and a third period takedown to fall 3-0. His opponent finished 8-1 in the tourney.