The Panthers collected 223 points, just seven fewer than second-place Douglas. Worland took home the championship trophy with 255 points. Lander finished fourth in the competition, beating out Torrington by winning a head-to-head matchup in the …
Three come home with state titles
Twelve Panthers came home with medals, three of them gold, and Powell finished a strong third in the Wyoming state wrestling tournament.
Jessee Craig, Jimmy Seckman and Olie Olson all finished the season as state champions, and Charles Wittick came within a point of joining them but had to settle for second. Robert Friday, Colt Nix, and Randy Andrews all finished third, and Waylon Bays finished fourth. Kurt Bullinger, Trevor Griffeth and Clay Saldana finished fifth and Tyler Patterson sixth.
The Panthers collected 223 points, just seven fewer than second-place Douglas. Worland took home the championship trophy with 255 points. Lander finished fourth in the competition, beating out Torrington by winning a head-to-head matchup in the final match of the tournament.
“We had a good second day,” said Coach Nate Urbach. “We needed a better first day.”
Craig cruised into the finals pinning three opponents, then dominated Josh Materi of Thermopolis 12-1 to win the title at 119.
Seckman pinned his first two opponents in less than one minute and ended his semi-final match in the second period with another pin to earn his shot at the 152-pound title. In the only head-to-head finals match between the Panthers and Douglas, Seckman defeated Bearcat Lane Read of Douglas 9-2 for his gold medal.
Olson also dominated his opponents, pinning two opponents and dominating another for a technical fall before earning a 9-5 decision over Kyle Larson of Thermopolis at 160.
In Powell’s other finals match, Wittick faced Worland’s Justin Lewton at 103. Lewton scored first, but Wittick escaped to trail by one. With Lewton in the superior position during the second period, Wittick had to fight off a determined effort to turn him. He was warned for stalling, a call Urbach asked the official to explain. A short time later, was called for stalling a second time, giving Lewton penalty point and a 3-1 lead. Wittick scored another escape and began a strong attack in the third period. Twice he took Lewton down, but both times the action was ruled out of bounds and Lewton held on for a 3-2 win.
Robert Friday reached the 125 semis with a pin and a decision but fell in the semifinals to Ryan Lewandowski of Torrington. He pinned his next opponent and finished with a 6-3 decision over Colter Brown of Thermopolis.
Bays also came back from a semifinal loss to win his way into the third-place match, and was on the verge of winning when he stumbled, enabling his Lander opponent to score a takedown.
Bullinger and Griffeth, along with Patterson, a non-scoring wrestler at 152, came back from second-round losses to reach the match for fifth place. Bullinger battled into overtime against Worland’s James Porter to score a 4-3 decision. Patterson nearly pinned Merritt Crabtree of Newcastle early, but Crabtree won a reverse and won by pin at the first-period buzzer.
Saldana, a non-scoring wrestler at 160, lost in the first round, but battled his way back to the fifth-place match and came from behind to take a 6-5 decision over Zak Owens of Douglas.