Battle in the Big Horns: Panther wrestlers take third


The Powell High School wrestling team competed in the Battle in the Big Horns Dual Tournament in Worland on Friday and Saturday, placing third with an overall 5-1 record.

The Panthers also had six individual wrestlers advance to the final four Best of the Best matches. Bo Dearcorn was the sole wrestler to win the championship at 170 pounds.

“I thought it was a good weekend, thought the kids wrestled well,” said head coach Nate Urbach.

Dual tournament

The first team Powell faced Friday was Lovell, with the Panthers posting a 58-22 win.

PHS then went on to defeat Riverton, 51-27, and Glenrock, 48-27.

On Saturday, Powell competed in the Gold Bracket with their 3-0 record on Friday.

Sixteen schools competed in the tournament with Friday’s results determining whether teams competed in the Gold or Silver Brackets on Saturday.

Powell’s first opponent on Saturday was Sheridan, where the Panthers won 36-32 to advance to the semi-finals.

In the semi-final dual, Powell lost to Worland 45-32. Powell had to forfeit three weight classes.

“That’s hard to be down 18-0 at the beginning, that’s just tough,” Urbach said of the loss.

A forfeited weight class results in six points for the opposing team.

The loss then pitted Powell once again up against Glenrock for third place.

Powell won the dual 48-26 to take the bronze. That put the Panthers overall record at 5-1 in the dual matches.

Best of the Best

Based on the individual records in the duals, the top four wrestlers in each weight class were selected to compete in the Best of the Best.

Powell had six wrestlers advance to the Best of the Best: Emma Karhu at 106 pounds, Michael Maddox at 120 pounds, Reese Karst at 138 pounds, Seth Horton at 152 pounds, Bo Dearcorn at 170 pounds and Brandon Thompson at 285 pounds.

Dearcorn was the only PHS wrestler to win the first match of the Best of the Best, moving on to the 170-pound championship. There he beat Ian Arnold of Glenrock with a 3-0 decision.

“He had a great weekend, I was really proud of him,” Urbach said.

Dearcorn ended with a record of 7-1.

Overall for the tournament, Urbach said “the whole thing is a process, we want our best team in February, not necessarily in December. It’s just one of those things where we keep getting better and keep working. But I’m real pleased with where we’re at at this point.”

The wrestlers are off for the winter break and will resume action in Bozeman, Montana, on Jan. 5 and 6.