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February 17, 2009 3:57 am

One for the seniors

Written by Tribune Staff

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Cody Kalberer (right) is one of eight senior members of the Powell High School wrestling team. Those seniors, six wrestlers and two managers, saw their last dual meet in the PHS gymnasium last Thursday in a varsity matchup against Worland. Tribune photo by David Dickey For more photos click here

No. 1 PHS tops Worland on senior night

The Powell High School wrestling team celebrated senior night last Thursday, and they did so in fine fashion by defeating the fifth-ranked, Class 3A Worland Warriors 49-21.

With the victory, the top-ranked Panthers, who also compete at the 3A level, capped the regular season with an 18-0 record in dual meets.

“I'm really happy with the way the kids performed tonight,” said PHS head coach Nate Urbach. “I think they were a little tired coming into this one, but they did a great job. This was a good dual meet for us right before the regional and state tournaments. They did well, but I still think this group can take it to another level.

There's room for improvement, and we'll be looking for them to peak as we get ready for the final two events of the season.”

Thursday's action opened with second-ranked Ren Utter (31-10) facing third-ranked Jay Stine at 103, and the PHS senior registered a pin at the 4:45 mark. Utter was ahead 13-3 when the pin occurred.

At 112, the crowd was treated to a double-overtime bout by the No. 1 and 2 wrestlers. Olie Olson (34-9), ranked second, gave top-ranked Jared Leithead a stout challenge before dropping a 7-2 decision.

“That was a tight match, and a good one,” Urbach said. “I thought Olie was going a find a way to win it, but he came up a little short there at the end.”
Worland then picked up a forfeit victory at 119 to push ahead 9-6 as far as the team score.

The Warriors built on that lead when Jorden Osbon, ranked No. 1, pinned fifth-ranked PHS sophomore Colt Nix (23-18) at 3:17 in the bout at 125. That pushed the Warriors ahead 15-6, but in the following bout, the tide began to shift in PHS's favor.

Panther 130-pound entry Randy Andrews (28-7), ranked third, registered a pin at 3:06 against Worland's Austen Sommerville. That outcome cut the Panthers' deficit to 15-12.

With a chance to put his team in the lead, 135-pounder and second-ranked Cory Eden (26-7) pinned Alek Torres at the :58 mark for an 18-15 lead.

In the 140-pound bout, PHS and Worland staged another battle between No. 1 and No. 2 wrestlers. First-ranked Auston Carter (39-5) gave the Panthers a 6-2 decision over Matt Osbon to give the Panthers a six-point advantage.

In the following matchup at 145, Powell's Jimmy Seckman (17-11), ranked fourth, faced No. 3 Jeff Redland. In what proved to be a hard-fought contest, Seckman came out on the short end of a 7-5 decision.

The Panthers quickly rebounded when Cole Kary (25-9), wrestling up one weight class, pinned Josue Rodriguez at the 2:26 mark for a win at 152. Kary entered the bout ranked No. 2 at 145.

Trevor Donarski, sporting a No. 1 ranking at 152, also moved up one weight class Thursday and battled No. 5 Dane Dooley. Donarski won by major decision, 17-7, and improved his overall record to 41-1.

At 171, PHS's Cody Kalberer (35-8), ranked No. 2 at 160, bumped up a weight class and faced Jon Beck. Kalberer finished the bout by pinning Beck at the 1:01 mark.

Sixth-ranked Panther Joe Lujan, wrestled up one weight class and squared off against Wade Newton, who entered the matchup ranked sixth at 189. Newton came away with a 7-0 decision.

In the 215-pound bout, sixth-ranked Tyler Showalter of PHS faced Roman Bastida. Showalter pinned his opponent at the 2:43 mark.

The dual meet came to a close with PHS sophomore Trevor Griffeth claiming a forfeit victory at 285 and solidified the Panthers' 49-21 victory.

As for the PHS seniors, the dual meet was the final one at home for Kalberer, Donarski, Utter, Eden, Showalter and Dalton Harris. It also marked the last home event for managers Kelsey McKearney and Sara Banning.

• Up next: The Panthers, who were given off days Friday, Saturday and Sunday, will next compete Friday and Saturday when they take part in the West Regional in Cody. Wrestling will begin at noon Friday and 10 a.m. Saturday.

After that, the Panthers will set their sights on the state tournament in Casper, which is scheduled for Friday, Feb. 27, and Saturday, Feb. 28.