Western AA Seeding Tournament State push begins for Flathead, Glacier wrestlers

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Flathead will have one champion — Jaden MacNeil — and Glacier will have one runner-up — Colby Martin — on the mats for the 2019 Western AA seeding tournament at Missoula Big Sky on Saturday at 11 a.m.

MacNeil won his seeding title in 2018 by tech fall in the final at 132. This year MacNeil is wrestling up a weight class at 138. He is 26-13 overall.

Martin had to forfeit in his finals last year at 170. He has moved up two weight classes to 205 and is 27-5 overall.

MacNeil and Martin are both seniors.

Flathead dominated this event a year ago at Flathead High School with six individual champions and qualifying 24 wrestlers for state.

Glacier had 12 state qualifiers.

The top eight finishers in each weight class at the seeding tournament qualify for state. Each school can wrestler two individuals at each weight class.

Flathead had 22 state qualifiers when it captured the state championship in 2017.

“Our goal, on paper, is to qualify 20 wrestlers for the state tournament,” Flathead coach Jeff Thompson said.

“We know that this is a high goal, but we believe in this team and their potential. We feel like our team will once again peak at the right time.

“Our philosophy has always been to wrestle the best competition possible during the season to prepare us for the postseason,” he continued.

“It’s now time to perform. I can guarantee one thing and that is that we will leave it all on the mat for six minutes of 100 percent effort. That’s all we can ask as coaches.”

Flathead has 10 wrestlers back from last year’s team that placed at the seeding tournament and Glacier’s total is nine.

Flathead’s Dillon Yeadon and Brendan Barnes both finished second a year ago.

Glacier’s Tristan Little and Tre Krause were both third.

“This team has been a really fun group to work with, and I am really excited for each and everyone of the 23 guys going into the seeding tournament,” Glacier coach Ross Dankers said.

“All of these guys have battled all year in wrestle-offs and tournaments to earn their spot on this team. Now it is time for them to showcase the work they have put in.

“We have a nice group of guys at the tournament this year that have been through this before and are battle tested,” he continued.

“We are going to look for them to set the tempo for our other group of 13 guys that are experiencing it for the first time. This tournament can play a big role in how things happen at state based on your position in that state bracket.”

The Braves this season compiled a 20-5 mark in dual action and placed fourth at the Mining City Duals in Butte, eighth at Tri-State in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, second at the Best of th West Duals in Pasco, Washington, sixth at the LeProwse Invitational in Bozeman and 11th at the Jug Beck Rocky Mountain Classic in Missoula.

“Overall, this has been a great rebuilding year for the Braves wrestling team,” Thompson said.

“We’ve had our fair share of adversity with injuries and such, but that is life. We got a lot of mat time wrestling in tournaments all over the (Pacific) Northwest. We have grown as a team this season and feel we are ready for (seeding tournament). We really need to wrestle above our seeds and punch as many Braves into that state tournament as possible. Ideally, getting into the top four gets you a real good seed at the state tournament. It’s pretty tough to score many points at state coming is as a seven, eight seed.”

Also competing at the seeding tournament are Helena Capital, Helena High, Missoula Big Sky, Missoula Hellgate and Missoula Sentinel.

The all-class state tournament is Feb. 8-9 in Billings.

Western AA Seeding Tournament

Saturday

At Missoula

Flathead Lineup

103 — Cole Eastwood, fr. 15-9 31-14

103 — Asher Rice, fr. 0-0 1-2

113 — Damian Naldrett, jr. 3-5 12-8

113 — Colton Wieczorek, fr. 5-9 8-11

120 — Dillon Yeadon, jr. 4-1 9-3

120 — Caleb Rhubottom, fr. 0-0 2-5

120 — Eric Bott, jr. 0-0 4-7

126 — Brendan Barnes, jr. 17-7 28-12

126 — Braden Comer, sr. 0-0 8-9

132 — Fin Nadeau, fr. 19-4 32-10

132 — Dominic Battello, sr. 12-7 19-13

138 — Jaden MacNeil, sr. 14-7 26-13

138 — Chase Youso, fr. 0-0 3-0

145 — Bo Meyer, sr. 11-11 24-16

145 — CJ Morris, so. 0-0 5-3

152 — Chance Sheldon-Allen, jr. 0-0 5-7

152 — Ridge Troupe, jr. 5-5 19-10

160 — Zaybin Stewart, so 12-13 27-19

160 — Finn Sullivan, sr. 0-0 9-8

170 — Tanner Russell, jr. 26-1 39-5

170 — Gage Winter, so. 0-0 4-10

182 — Paxton Boyce, jr. 14-5 24-16

182 — Jonathan Holcomb, so. 0-0 4-7

205 — Ross Calhoon, sr. 7-7 10-13

205 — Sebastian Koch, sr. 9-11 18-16

HWT — Aydan Prieto, jr. 4-4 11-12

HWT Michael Downing, fr. 3-4 7-7

Team Points in Duals

Tanner Russell 144, Cole Eastwood 106, Fin Nadeau 98, Brendan Barnes 89, Jaden MacNeil 84

Wins

Tanner Russell 39, Fin Nadeau 32, Cole Eastwood 29, Brendan Barnes 28, Zaybin Stewart 27

Pins

Tanner Russell 32, Zaybin Stewart 20, Cole Eastwood 17, Bo Meyer 17, Jaden MacNeil 14

Tech Falls

Tanner Russell 3, Brendan Barnes 2, Asher Kemppainen 2, Fin Nadeau 2, Cole Eastwood 1

Major Decisions

Jaden MacNeil 4, Cole Eastwood 3, Fin Nadeau 3, Sebastian Koch 2, Bo Meyer 2

Decisions

Fin Nadeau 15, Brendan Barnes 11, Asher Kemppainen 9, Cole Eastwood 6, Zaybin Stewart 6

Takedowns

Fin Nadeau 69, Jaden MacNeil 58, Cole Eastwood 57, Tanner Russell 50, Asher Kemppainen 47

Escapes

Brendan Barnes 35, Jaden MacNeil 34, Fin Nadeau 28, Cole Eastwood 27, Zaybin Stewart 27

Reversals

Cole Eastwood 16, Zaybin Stewart 14, Tanner Russell 12, Fin Nadeau 9, Dominic Battello 7

2-Point Near Falls

Tanner Russell 16, Cole Eastwood 13, Brendan Barnes 10, Zaybin Stewart 8, Paxton Boyce 7

3-Point Near Falls

Tanner Russell 19, Asher Kemppainen 17, Fin Nadeau 13, Zaybin Stewart 11, Brendan Barnes 8

Total Near Falls

Tanner Russell 35, Asher Kemppainen 23, Cole Eastwood 21, Fin Nadeau 19, Zaybin Stewart 19

Glacier Lineup

103 — Thomas Putnam, fr. 4-6 14-12

103 — Drew Kernan, fr. 1-1 7-9

113 — Dylan Miller, sr. 6-8 13-12

113 — Cody Frost, so. 6-6 10-8

120 — Tristan Little, sr. 15-9 22-15

120 —Bridger Beach, jr. 4-11 8-15

or

120 —Kyle McCollam, fr. 0-0 4-7

126 — Lance Fretwell, so. 11-11 23-13

126 — Brok Viau, fr. 0-0 8-5

132 — Ricardo Hewitt, fr. 1-6 6-13

132 — Brian Marmolejo, so. 0-0 4-7

138 — Royce Conklin, fr. 5-16 17-19

138 — Dakota Lagudice, fr. 0-0 1-7

145 — Kael Willis, so. 8-7 16-11

145 — Blake Franklin, so. 1-1 1-6

152 — Caden Willis, sr. 14-11 22-14

152 — Vald Voitav, fr. 0-0 3-8

160 — Thomas Crofts, jr. 0-14 7-16

160 — Jaron Scott, jr. 0-2 6-7

170 — Open 182 — Skilar Hitt, jr. 4-16 8-21

205 — Colby Martin, sr. 14-4 25-7

205 — Justin Olson, so. 1-4 12-5

285 — Tre Krause, sr. 11-2 17-4

285 — Camryn Vergeront, jr. 5-4 14-10

or

285 —Caedon Seymour, jr. 0-0 7-0

Wins

Colby Martin 25, Lance Fretwell 23, Caden Willis 22, Tristan Little 22, Tre Krause 17, Royce Conklin 17

Pins

Colby Martdin 23, Tristan Little 19

Takedowns

Caden Willis 38, Thomas Putnam 34

Near Falls

Caden Willis 20

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