Thirty-six high school wrestlers from Tooele County qualified for this weekend’s Class 3A and Class 4A state wrestling tournaments, hoping to add their names to the list of those who have won the ultimate prize: a state title.
On Friday and Saturday at the UCCU Center on Utah Valley University’s campus in Orem, state-championship dreams will come true for a select few who manage to make their way through some of the very best grapplers the Beehive State has to offer.
The action begins at 11:30 a.m. Friday, continuing until 8 p.m. On Saturday, the championship semifinals are scheduled for 10 a.m., with the finals beginning at 4:15 p.m.
Here is a look at the three dozen wrestlers set to represent Grantsville, Tooele and Stansbury high schools this weekend in Orem.
Grantsville is sending 12 wrestlers to the Class 3A state tournament, with several others who could get in as alternates should another wrestler fail to make weight or otherwise become unable to compete.
The Cowboys’ contingent is led by a pair of seniors who finished second at the Class 3A Divisional meet at the end of January — Thomas Coates and Joseph Mecham. Mecham, who won the 113-pound championship in Class 4A while competing for Tooele High School last season, will look to add the Class 3A 120-pound championship to his resumé when he opens his tournament against seventh-seeded Breyer Wright of Juab. Coates, a 132-pounder and returning state placer, is slated to face Delta’s Cameron Skeem in the first round.
Kole Johnson finished third at 106 pounds at divisionals, and will meet South Sevier’s Weston Blake in the first round. Nathen Carpenter, who was fourth at 145 pounds, will face Jett High of South Sevier in his first match, while Cruz Baldovinez will take on Summit Academy’s Joseph Garlick in the first round of the 182-pound bracket. Grant Rounds earned a No. 5 seed at 152 pounds and will face Delta’s Samuel LeBaron.
Chaz Shafer (195) and Canyon Palmer (160) each finished sixth at divisionals, and will face an opponent from Richfield in the first round at state. Shafer will face Lex Leany and Palmer will meet Carston Jensen. Grantsville also has a trio of No. 8 seeds in Ian Mecham (120), Richie Tracy (152) and Carson Hurst (170), all of whom will face No. 1 seeds in the first round: Mecham gets Richfield’s Denim Torgerson, while Tracy faces Juab’s Cade Bowring and Hurst draws Delta’s Tate Willoughby. Nathan Geldmacher finished 10th at 182 pounds at divisionals, but since the other division only had six wrestlers in his weight class, he will move over to the other side of the bracket to face North Sanpete’s top-seeded Jaden Kaibetony in the first round.
Ethan Rainer (138), Hunter Johnson (160) and Bridger Edwards (170) finished ninth at divisionals, and will serve as alternates.
Sixteen wrestlers from Stansbury and eight from Tooele qualified for the state tournament in Class 4A, with a number of potential state placers in that group.
Stansbury’s Carsen Cooper won the 220-pound title at last week’s Class 4A Division B tournament at Mountain Crest High School in Hyrum, putting him in prime position to compete for a state title. He will face Sky View’s Jaxson Wilson, who finished eighth at the Division A tournament at Hurricane High School, in the first round.
Kaden Shin was the Division B runner-up at 195 pounds for Stansbury, and will face Snow Canyon freshman Beau Miller in his first match. The Stallions’ lone returning state placer, Jordan Hammond, made an impression with a second-place finish at 145 and will take on Ridgeline’s Matthew Keith on Friday.
The Stallions have two No. 3 seeds in Braydon Allie (170) and Matt Ingersoll (285), though each will face a wrestler from powerhouse Uintah in the first round. Allie will take on Joe Jackson and Ingersoll will meet Derek Tenney.
A quartet of Tooele County wrestlers were fourth-place finishers at divisionals: Tooele’s Parker Hansen (106) and Stansbury’s Danny Khoundet (138), Connor Perrenoud (195) and Daxton Brown (220). Hansen will face Dixie’s Oscar Walsh; Khoundet faces Snow Canyon’s Kaden White; Perrenoud takes on Juan Diego’s Ashton Macias; and Brown draws Ridgeline’s Joseph Sena in the first round.
Tooele’s Cannon Manning (145) and Mason Flygar (113) are No. 5 seeds, as is Stansbury’s Josh Olson (152). Manning wll wrestle Hurricane’s Tristyn Dennett, Flygar faces Nathaniel Fordham of Desert Hills and Olson gets Dustin Rhoades of Uintah in the first round.
Stansbury’s Carson Pease (106) and Xander Howard (182) join Tooele’s Chandler Yeck (285) as No. 6 seeds. Yeck faces Chance Richins of Desert Hills in the first round, while Pease takes on Hurricane’s Seth Armstrong and Howard faces Pine View’s Jared Brimer.
Stansbury’s Parker Zukeran (106), Brayden Phillips (126), Cameron Mast (132) and Luis Mejia (182) finished seventh at divisionals, as did Tooele’s Alexander Kerwood (220). All have tough draws against runners-up from Division A: Zukeran faces Ridgeline’s Ryan Orduno; Phillips meets Dixie’s Korbin Suwyn; Mast takes on Pine View’s Riley Helt; Mejia wrestles Hurricane’s Ethan Hirschi and Kerwood will meet Dawson Bundy of Desert Hills.
Tooele’s Wesley Tso (113) will face Division A champion Raiden Harrison in the first round. Tyson Tso (120) meets Uintah’s Cole Huber and Gabriel Vigil (126) gets Uintah’s Brady Merkley as his first-round opponent. Stansbury’s Jayden Sisam (152) will take on Hurricane’s Joshua Armstrong in his first match.
Tooele’s Ethan Gavin (126) and Braedy Timothy (132) are alternates, as are Stansbury’s Cole Clinton (113) and Alexis Rosas (285).