There is a little more than a month left before the state wrestling tournament, and the Tooele and Grantsville wrestling teams got an opportunity to see where they stand with a tri-meet against Union on Tuesday night at Grantsville High School.
It was a mixed bag for Tooele, which defeated former region rival Union 40-33 before a lackluster 41-33 win over Grantsville. Meanwhile, the shorthanded Cowboys, who gave up 18 points by forfeit in each dual, were pleased after losing 42-37 to Union before their close loss to their county rival.
“I’m happy with the kids’ performance,” Grantsville coach Clarence Evans said. “We’re going to be a lot tougher once we get some mat time under these kids’ belts.”
Grantsville had a strong showing in the lower weights against Tooele. Thomas Coates opened the dual by pinning Cannon Manning with 1:12 left in their 106-pound bout, and Jacob Day picked up a 3-point near fall in the third period to defeat Ethan Hunter 5-3 at 120 pounds. Hunter Johnson then beat Ian Carson 12-6 at 126 pounds.
Tooele’s first win of the dual came at 132 pounds, where Eli Messick pinned Nathen Carpenter just before the second-period buzzer. Grantsville’s Brayden Adams followed with a 9-0 major decision over Teagan Palmer at 145, and Tooele’s Wyatt Chaplin scored a 23-8 tech fall win over Seth Hicken at 145 before Grantsville’s Bodey Manzanares recorded a pin over Adelicio Mascarenas at 152.
Koby Johnson dominated Tooele’s Hunter Nelson with a 19-4 tech fall just 3:06 into their match at 160 pounds before the Buffaloes clinched the dual with back-to-back pins. Carter Grgich pinned Grantsville’s Colby Johnson 49 seconds into the second period at 170 pounds, and Ryan Hintze defeated Cruz Baldovinez with 11 seconds left at 182.
Tooele won by forfeit at 195 and 285. Grantsville’s Logan Kuehn pinned Griffen Bate at the 1:12 mark at 220 pounds.
“I think we definitely showed well against Union,” Tooele coach Cody Valdez said. “We wrestled a little sloppy against Grantsville. We got the win, and ultimately that’s what you’re here for, but it was a little sloppy as a team. I told the kids beforehand that I knew Grantsville has a really good team and (Evans) does a really good job with them.”
Grantsville will have a challenging weekend as it travels to Richfield for the 3A Duals.
“We’re not doing too bad,” Evans said. “Overall, I’m pretty happy with the kids.”
Tooele is off this weekend before playing host to the Best of the West Tournament next week. It will provide a showcase for some of the top teams in the state as the state tournament looms in early February.
“We’ve got 25 teams coming,” Valdez said. “It’s going to be a lot tougher. There’s a lot of top teams in the state that are going to be here.”