The Stansbury wrestling team came into the annual Best of the West tournament at Tooele High School feeling disrespected – ignored in the rankings despite a successful season on the mat to this point.
With more performances like Saturday’s, the Stallions won’t fly under the radar for much longer.
Stansbury won the team title by a comfortable 46-point margin over Class 6A Westlake, which came into the tournament ranked 12th in the state by USA Wrestling Utah. No. 10 North Summit finished fifth of 23 teams.
Stansbury had four individual champions among 13 placers at the tournament. Danny Khoundet improved to 24-8 on the season by pinning West Jordan’s Nathan Coburn just 42 seconds into the 138-pound championship match, while Braydon Allie (25-8) defeated Taylorsville’s Malachi Novosel in an 8-4 decision at 170. Xander Howard (19-9) held off Grantsville’s Cruz Baldovinez 4-3 for the 182-pound crown, and Kaden Shin (31-2) pinned teammate Connor Perrenoud at the 2:39 mark for the 195-pound title. Shin was named the tournament’s Outstanding Wrestler in the upper weights.
Carson Pease finished second at 106 pounds, falling to North Summit’s Tristan Smith in the final. Carsen Cooper was third at 220, finishing his tournament with a 24-second pin against Hillcrest’s Max Greenwood, and Luis Mejia pinned Ben Lomond’s Noah Mann in 33 seconds to finish third at 182.
Jake Otero was fourth at 120 and Cole Clinton finished fifth at 113. Jordan Hammond was fifth at 132 and Matt Ingersoll was sixth at 285. Cameron Mast (132), Josh Olson (152) and Daxton Brown (220) also competed for Stansbury.
Grantsville finished sixth with 120.5 points, behind Stansbury, Westlake, Spanish Fork, Brighton and North Summit. Joseph Mecham (26-3) was Grantsville’s lone champion, defeating North Summit’s Bronson Richins 9-4 in the 120-pound final. Kole Johnson was third at 106 pounds and Thomas Coates pinned Juan Diego’s Brock Gutierrez at the 2:48 mark to finish third at 132. Grant Rounds finished sixth at 152.
Other Cowboys in the tournament included Ian Mecham (120), Austin Wilcox (138), John Hunzeker (145), Dustin Scott (152), Richie Tracy (152), Hunter Johnson (170) and Chaz Shafer (195).
Tooele was 10th with 89 points, with Hillcrest seventh and Juan Diego and Logan tied for eighth. Chandler Yeck made a spectacular run through the 285-pound bracket, as the sophomore knocked off several top contenders to reach the final before losing by pin to Logan senior Quincy Wildman. Mason Flygar was third at 113, pinning Westlake’s Jaiden Royce at the end of the first period in the third-place match, and Parker Hansen finished fourth at 106 after having to forfeit the third-place match. Cannon Manning finished fifth at 145, capping his weekend with an 8-4 win over Brighton’s Stryder Paulson in the fifth-place match.
The Buffaloes also had Braedy Timothy (132), Julian Gomez (145), Joshua Prescott (152), Fernando Vasquez (160), Stanley Kerr (195) and Alexander Kerwood (220) competing in the tournament.