The Columbus North wrestlers didn’t get the win they needed against Bloomington North on Saturday to finish in a three-way tie for the North Invitational championship, but they did make a little progression.

The Bull Dogs, who lost to the Cougars 63-18 in last week’s Bloomington Invitational, fell 54-24 in the final round on Saturday. But even though the score was only slightly better, the matches were much more competitive.

“We did a better job this week of not giving up pins, keeping the matches a little bit closer and wrestling smart,” North coach Chris Cooper said. “Our technique is getting better. Cardio is solid. We have a lot of guys that don’t have a ton of wrestling experience that are athletes that need to gain experience.”

The Bull Dogs finished 3-2 for the day. They opened with a 48-18 win against Brown County and followed with a 48-30 win against the Seymour junior varsity and a 43-15 triumph against Shelbyville. Columbus North then fell to Whiteland 48-24 before the loss to Bloomington North.

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Andrew Chapman (182 pounds) and Josh Larson (195) each went 5-0 for the Bull Dogs.

“I thought I wrestled better than I did last week,” Larson said. “Five-and-0 feels good.”

Morgan Smith (106) and Nick Holt (160) each went 4-1 for Columbus North. Nick Miller (113) and Bradley Gutierrez (220) each went 3-2.

Brown County finished 2-3. Following their loss to the Bull Dogs, the Eagles fell to Whiteland 40-23, beat the Seymour JV 39-34, lost to Bloomington North 60-18 and beat Shelbyville 24-22.

David Tucker (106) and Evan Bullock (145) each went 5-0 for Brown County. Baylee Mosier (220) went 3-2.

The Eagles were missing Job Lawson, who was taking the SAT, and Ben Rygiel, who has hip injury, and had to forfeit five weight classes.

“Being without those two guys, we knew it was going to be a little hard,” Brown County coach Josh Sparks said.

Bloomington North won the tournament with a 5-0 record. Whiteland finished second at 4-1.

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Ted Schultz is sports editor for The Republic. He can be reached at tschultz@therepublic.com or 812-379-5628.