OREM — Wasatch High School put its tremendous strength and overwhelming depth on display again Thursday night to secure a second straight 4A state championship and land in the record books.
After knocking off region rival Maple Mountain 44-24 in the state dual wrestling championship earlier this season, Wasatch pushed a total of nine wrestlers into the championship matches and cleaned up with an impressive 283.5-234.5 victory to become the first school in the 4A classification to win both the dual and traditional state championships in the same season.
“It’s huge for us. It just shows how strong we really are both as a team and individually. We’re always wanting to win state titles and try to get as many back-to-backs as we can, so it feels great to make history,” Wasatch’s Zak Kohler said.
The defending champs saw tremendous success this morning and qualified an impressive nine wrestlers to championship matches, six of whom came out victorious, to extend their lead over the Golden Eagles and remain in complete control.
Following a first-place finish from Trevor Cluff (113), Kohler and defending state champ Braiden Parker kept the momentum rolling in the 120-pound class with a 1-2 finish, respectively, as Kohler held on to edge his teammate for his first individual state title.
“It’s really tough when it’s a teammate because you don’t want to have any bad blood after it and you always want to have that brotherhood. But you’ve still got to go out there and battle with everything you have. It feels great to get this first title,” said Kohler.
However, Maple Mountain refused to back down as senior Tanner Cox (126) came up big with an impressive third individual state title before star Taylor LaMont (138) wrapped up his fourth straight state title with a blowout win against Payson’s Jed Loveless.
“It’s just awesome. Getting that third state title is just an unbelievable feeling — it’s something I’ve dreamed of since I was young. I just wanted to go out, attack him and take him down on his feet. It feels great,” Cox said.
Unfortunately for the Golden Eagles, Wasatch couldn’t be contained.
Corbin Smith, Jakob Discher, Ritchie Heywood and Ben Bos all recorded key wins while DJ Cohen and Seth Gardner both locked up second-place finishes to secure the overall top spot with a score of 283.5 and the 4A state championship.
“The kids just had a lot of fun and wrestled hard. They all really stepped up and worked hard all season. They had some goals — from this point last year to this point this year, they worked tremendously hard. It just feels great,” Wasatch coach Wade Discher said.
1. Wasatch, 283.5
2. Maple Mountain, 234.5
3. Box Elder, 177.5
4. Uintah, 160.5
5. Payson, 134.5
6. Salem Hills, 95.0
7. Skyline, 76.5
8. Kearns, 70.0
9. Mountain View, 67.5
10. Woods Cross, 60.0
11. Bountiful, 52.0
12. Highland, 46.0
13. Alta, 38.0
13. Orem, 38.0
15. Olympus, 34.0
106 — Championship: Garrett Ricks (Box Elder) 39-6, So. over Randy Merkley (Uintah) 24-7, Fr. (MD 10-1); 3. Jon Johnson, Bountiful; 4. Quenton Mortimer, Maple Mountain; 5. Jacob Ethridge, Payson.
113 — Championship: Trevor Cluff (Wasatch) 42-7, Jr. over Gabriel Terry (Mountain View) 44-9, So. (Dec 9-6); 3. Dylan Bell, Payson; 4. Gabriel Terry, Mountain View; 5. Jack Lang, East.
120 — Championship: Zak Kohler (Wasatch) 37-12, Fr. over Braiden Parker (Wasatch) 44-6, Sr. (Dec 8-7); 3. Brandon Meikel, Kearns; 4. Brigham Miyazawa, Mountain View; 5. Harold Lemus, Kearns.
126 — Championship: Tanner Cox (Maple Mountain) 52-2, Sr. over Carson Halls (Woods Cross) 36-10, Jr. (TF-1.5 4:33 (16-1); 3. Caleb Monson, Skyline; 4. Noah Patterson, Salem Hills; 5. Adam Robins, Orem.
132 — Championship: Corbin Smith (Wasatch) 47-9, Jr. over Kedric Coonis (Uintah) 32-7, Sr. (Dec 11-8); 3. Ben Harden, Woods Cross; 4. Brady Harris, Box Elder; 5. Bruce Campbell, Maple Mountain.
138 — Championship: Taylor LaMont (Maple Mountain) 53-0, Sr. over Jed Loveless (Payson) 39-7, Jr. (MD 12-2); 3. Isaac Wilcox, Olympus; 4. Steven Ballif, Wasatch; 5. Taylor Heath, Alta.
145 — Championship: Brock Hardy (Box Elder) 39-2, So. over Seth Gardner (Wasatch) 26-6, So. (Fall 1:04); 3. Spencer Curtis, Maple Mountain; 4. Tim Suwyn, Uintah; 5. John Tristan Hellstrom, Maple Mountain.
152 — Championship: Jakob Discher (Wasatch) 40-8, Jr. over Brandyn Vantassell (Maple Mountain) 40-12, So. (Dec 5-4); 3. Wyatt Monroe, Payson; 4. Nick Piscitelli, Wasatch; 5. Brad Findlay, Corner Canyon.
160 — Championship: Tucker Tomlinson (Uintah) 41-4, Jr. over Dj Cohen (Wasatch) 43-9, So. (Dec 4-3); 3. Kyle Larsen, Salem Hills; 4. Jesse Shepherd, Provo; 5. Parker Kay, Maple Mountain.
170 — Championship: Ritchie Heywood (Wasatch) 48-4, Jr. over Jaxon Van Tassell (Salem Hills) 40-7, Jr. (Dec 3-2); 3. Dallon Woods, Alta; 4. Jackson Lancaster, Box Elder; 5. Tanner Moon, Uintah.
182 — Championship, Chayce Loveless (Payson) 44-4, Jr. over Cory Rokovitz (Maple Mountain) 41-16, Sr. (Dec 6-2); 3. Nate Rolling, Highland; 4. Garth Healey, Wasatch; 5. Jackson Roubidoux, Box Elder.
195 — Championship: Parker Jensen (Skyline) 38-3, Sr. over Keegan Ngatuvai (Mountain View) 47-8, Sr. (Fall 3:57); 3. Bryson Laris, Uintah; 4. Michael Milliner, Bonneville; 5. Lilo Clark, Highland.
220 — Championship: Jordan Crofts (Skyline) 48-3, Sr. over Korbon Tibbals (Maple Mountain) 53-5, Sr. (Fall 3:31); 3. Hayden Brown, Bountiful; 4. Tyler Gleed, Orem; 5. Cameron Latu, Olympus.
285 — Championship: Ben Bos (Wasatch) 50-4, Sr. over Riley Taylor (Box Elder) 34-11, Jr. (Fall 0:36); 3. Fosi Nathan, Kearns; 4. Ipuauro Netzler, Highland; 5. Brad King, Maple Mountain.
Ryan Love is a full-time student and has been a part-time sportswriter for Deseret News since Oct. 2012.
Follow him on Twitter @RLove7724