ALLENDALE — Two female wrestlers came back with medals from Saturday’s Optimist wrestling tournament in Allendale to highlight Manistee’s performance on the day.

Returning veterans Ava Pike, an Onekama student who wrestles with the Chippewas through a co-op agreement, and Joey Banicki each finished 3-0.
Banicki, wrestling at 130 pounds, won all three of her matches by pin while Pike, in the 100-pound weight class, pinned her first two opponents in the first period before winning the third by decision.
“Both were sick and missed practice Thursday, and didn’t do much on Friday,” said Manistee coach Logan Bond. “So, it was cool to see how well they did Saturday. I was really impressed with them, and all the girls who wrestled. We had two girls go down hurt, but other than that every girl won at least one match.”
Gabby Accardi made her debut on the mat and went 2-1 on the day to finish second.
“We definitely have to add some technique to her game, but if you’re strong enough you do some weird stuff and make stuff work,” Bond said. “I mean, she had a couple takedowns with moves that we haven’t taught her in practice, but they worked. Getting those wins should give her confidence going forward.”

Manistee kicks off competition in the West Michigan Conference Lakes Division on Wednesday when it travels to Oakridge for a dual match.