Grantsville wrestling coach Clarence Evans may have a young team this season, but the Cowboys certainly showed some positive signs during Saturday’s Cowboy Duals.
Grantsville went 4-1 in the round-robin format, losing by just three points to tournament champion Ben Lomond, and saw four of its wrestlers win their respective weight classes by going undefeated.
“I was impressed,” Evans said. “They wrestled pretty tough. We lost the one dual to Ben Lomond 42-39, but we lost 30 points to forfeits. They came back pretty good after digging themselves that deep of a hole.”
Brayden Adams led the way with all five of his wins at 138 pounds coming by way of pin. Thomas Coates won the 106-pound title with four tech falls. Jacob Day also went undefeated at 120 pounds with three pins and a tech fall, while Koby Johnson recorded four tech falls and a pin to win the 170-pound crown.
Grantsville’s Connor Stanworth went 4-1 at 132 pounds with four pins, finishing second in his weight class. Bodey Manzanares was second at 152, going 4-1 with two pins, a tech fall and a major decision, while Cruz Baldovinez had three pins to finish second at 195 and Logan Kuehn had four pins to finish second at 220.
Immri Charles, a transfer student from Florida who will be ineligible to compete for the Cowboys at the varsity level this season because of Utah High School Activities Association rules, went 4-1 with two pins and a major decision to finish second at 182 competing as an individual.
Richard Walker went 3-2 with two pins and a major decision to finish third at 160.
“I think it’s a great eye-opener for them,” Evans said. “We saw a lot of things that we need to work on and we need to improve on, as well as some things we’re pretty solid at. There’s a lot of stuff we can build on for these kids.”
Evans’ team only has three seniors out of 26 kids on the team this season, leaving the coach optimistic not only for 2017-18, but the years ahead.
“Next year, we’re going to be really tough,” he said, noting that this year’s team is loaded with juniors.
Tooele’s junior varsity squad went 2-3 in the round robin, beating Park City and East and losing to Grantsville and Ben Lomond. The Buffaloes tied Hunter 36-36 during their dual, but the Wolverines earned the victory by virtue of winning seven matches to Tooele’s six. Despite fielding a very inexperienced roster — Tooele coach Richard Valdez noted that many of the wrestlers who competed Saturday only took up the sport this year — the Buffs still had five grapplers place in the top three in their respective weight classes.
Heavyweight Si’i Iongi went undefeated with four pins to win his weight class. Thad Torgensen was 4-1 at 195 pounds with three pins and a tech fall and Jack Hogan went undefeated at 145 with two pins and a tech fall. Cody Smith had two pins to finish second at 113 and Dallin Malmgren went 3-2 with three pins to finish third at 132.
Both teams will be back in action this weekend. Tooele will compete at the Stallion Stampede at Stansbury High School, while Grantsville will travel to Evanston, Wyoming, to take part in the Evanston Invitational.