OREM — After battling back and forth for the top spot in Region 8 all year long, Wasatch and Maple Mountain are still neck and neck as they head into the final day of action in the 2016 UHSAA State Wrestling Tournament at the UCCU Center.
The Wasps came out and immediately got to work as they had three wrestlers (Trevor Cluff, Braiden Parker and Zak Kohler) win their quarterfinal bouts in the first three rounds of the day to get things rolling and establish control early.
“I thought we came out really well. We had some younger kids who really stepped up and advanced to the next round. I think that really got things rolling for our other guys,” Wasatch coach Wade Discher said.
Meanwhile, Maple Mountain’s Tanner Cox (126) and defending champ Taylor LaMont (138) both put on strong performances and came out on top for their team to get things going.
“It’s hard to put into words because on so many levels he (LaMont) just gets the job done. From a leadership standpoint, he’s crucial to this team because he works harder than anyone else, gets guys going behind the scenes and is just a huge asset to our program on many levels,” Maple Mountain coach Justin Judkins said.
However, with a dominant stretch of seven straight quarterfinal victories from 132 pounds all the way to the 195-pound round, the Wasps’ quarterfinal performance was too much for the Golden Eagles as they took a slight 11.5-point advantage heading into Thursday.
“All our kids have put a lot of time into this. All the way through from back in their youth wrestling days, they’ve really come together and stepped up and it’s really cool to see that,” said Discher. “And then we have our big guy, Ben Bos, back in action and taking care of business. It’s really nice.”
Boy, was it ever.
Bos quickly won the 285-pound heavyweight matchup, the Wasps’ 11th wrestler of the day to survive and advance, to help Wasatch bounce back and close out the quarterfinals with a win to extend its lead over its rival.
“I worked myself, moved him and just did what I was taught. I’ve always wanted to take state (individually). As a team, I think we’ll have a lot of guys in the finals and we’ve had a lot of guys step up and improve this year. It makes us so much better because people think it is an individual sport, which it is, but you have your teammates pushing you every single day,” Bos said.
The Golden Eagles didn’t have quite as strong as a finish. However, it did make up some ground in the consolation round and eventually did just enough to cut their deficit to 130.5-119.0 by the end of the night.
“The first round went about how we expected, but this last round (quarterfinals) didn’t. We lost some key matches and that hurt us in a big way,” said Judkins. “If we’re going to come out hard and wrestle through it, we’ll be ok. Our back is against the wall and we can’t afford any more mistakes.”
Wednesday’s 4A Quarterfinal Individual Results
Garrett Ricks (Box Elder) 37-6 won by major decision over Quade Valerio (Payson) 25-9 (MD 12-1)
Quenton Mortimer (Maple Mountain) 38-16 won by fall over Jacob Ethridge (Payson) 27-11 (Fall 5:40)
Jon Johnson (Bountiful) 25-6 won by fall over Antonio Aviles (Kearns) 27-8 (Fall 0:35)
Randy Merkley (Uintah) 23-6 won by fall over Thomas Gordy (Woods Cross) 34-12 (Fall 1:27)
Chyler Zeeman (Salem Hills) 29-9 won by fall over Kemry Smuin (Uintah) 34-8 (Fall 5:33)
Gabriel Terry (Mountain View) 43-8 won by fall over Dylan Bell (Payson) 31-13 (Fall 1:51)
Jack Lang (East) 32-9 won by decision over Jaren Myrup (Maple Mountain) 42-18 (Dec 5-4)
Trevor Cluff (Wasatch) 40-7 won by decision over Koy Caldwell (Box Elder) 25-12 (Dec 6-3)
Braiden Parker (Wasatch) 43-5 won by fall over Peyton Griffin (Provo) 31-15 (Fall 3:40)
Brigham Miyazarra (Mountain View) 31-16 won by decision over Harold Lemus (Kearns) 20-12 (Dec 6-4)
Brandon Meikel (Kearns) 45-4 won by major decision over Wyatt Sharp (Uintah) 22-18 (MD 16-3)
Zak Kohler (Wasatch) 35-12 won by fall over Austin Bingham (Box Elder) 36-11 (Fall 5:58)
Caleb Monson (Skyline) 44-3 won by major decision over Porter Hodgson (Box Elder) 25-15 (MD 10-0)
Carson Halls (Woods Cross) 35-9 won by major decision over Ceiph Al-masosi (Corner Canyon) 16-14 (MD 17-6)
Tanner Cox (Maple Mountain) 50-2 won by fall over Brandon Slaugh (Uintah) 18-9 (Fall 1:58)
Noah Patterson (Salem Hills) 32-12 won by major decision over Adam Robins (Orem) 37-9 (MD 13-4)
Corbin Smith (Wasatch) 45-9 won by tech fall over Keith Freeman (Ogden) 21-6 (TF-1.5 4:49 (19-3))
Brady Harris (Box Elder) 17-7 won by decision over Bruce Campbell (Maple Mountain) 33-16 (Dec 6-5)
Ben Harden (Woods Cross) 39-6 won by decision over Austin Davis (Salem Hills ) 34-15 (Dec 7-0)
Kedric Coonis (Uintah) 31-6 won by major decision over Jace Tilley (Box Elder) 38-15 (MD 14-6)
Steven Ballif (Wasatch) 34-16 won by fall over Jaidon Gutierrez (Skyline) 38-13 (Fall 5:17)
Jed Loveless (Payson) 38-6 won by fall over Taylor Heath (Alta) 27-8 (Fall 4:48)
Taylor Lamont (Maple Mountain) 51-0 won by fall over Bronc Marriott (Woods Cross) 19-7 (Fall 0:46)
Isaac Wilcox (Olympus) 45-6 won by fall over Merrell Morley (Salem Hills ) 24-12 (Fall 4:42)
Brock Hardy (Box Elder) 37-2 won by fall over Dylan Carter (Salem Hills ) 26-15 (Fall 1:33)
Spencer Curtis (Maple Mountain) 37-6 won by fall over Tim Suwyn (Uintah) 24-21 (Fall 4:27)
Garrett Maxwell (Bountiful) 32-13 won by decision over John tristan Hellstrom (Maple Mountain) 38-9 (Dec 14-13)
Seth Gardner (Wasatch) 25-5 won by fall over Justin Martin (Salem Hills ) 32-11 (Fall 1:18)
Jakob Discher (Wasatch) 38-8 won by decision over Nick Piscitelli (Wasatch) 31-15 (Dec 8-3)
Wyatt Monroe (Payson) 43-7 won by fall over Bradin Hohrein (Spanish Fork) 42-13 (Fall 5:35)
Brandyn Vantassell (Maple Mountain) 39-11 won by major decision over Zack Johnson (Maple Mountain) 38-7 (MD 18-6)
Brad Findlay (Corner Canyon) 32-11 won by decision over Briar Bunderson (Box Elder) 29-12 (Dec 9-8)
Dj Cohen (Wasatch) 42-8 won by major decision over Sean Johnson (Murray) 34-13 (MD 17-4)
Parker Kay (Maple Mountain) 30-19 won by decision over Jesse Shepherd (Provo) 24-12 (Dec 9-5)
Tyler Manookin (Payson) 27-7 won by major decision over Andrew max Hansen (Corner Canyon) 22-18 (MD 11-1)
Tucker Tomlinson (Uintah) 39-4 won by fall over Kyle Larsen (Salem Hills ) 46-7 (Fall 2:53)
Ritchie Heywood (Wasatch) 46-4 won by fall over Tanner Moon (Uintah) 34-16 (Fall 1:46)
Marcos Zarate (Woods Cross) 27-13 won by fall over Daniel Neuffer (Timpview ) 25-8 (Fall 4:12)
Dallon Woods (Alta) 47-7 won by fall over Colby Denton (Provo) 25-13 (Fall 0:42)
Jaxon Van Tassell (Salem Hills ) 39-6 won by decision over Jackson Lancaster (Box Elder) 36-13 (Dec 11-5)
Garth Healey (Wasatch) 41-11 won by major decision over Mario Zapata (Uintah) 26-13 (MD 15-5)
Cory Rokovitz (Maple Mountain) 40-15 won by fall over Jackson Babka (Alta) 27-17 (Fall 2:58)
Chayce Loveless (Payson) 42-4 won by tech fall over Coooper Legas (Orem) 25-11 (TF-1.5 4:28 (17-1))
Nate Rolling (Highland) 48-6 won by decision over Jackson Roubidoux (Box Elder) 32-10 (Dec 3-2)
Alek Shope (Uintah) 17-1 won by decision over Michael Milliner (Bonneville) 39-9 (Dec 8-7)
Keegan Ngatuvai (Mountain View) 46-7 won by decision over Wylder Smith (Wasatch) 18-19 (Dec 6-3)
Lilo Clark (Highland) 9-5 won by decision over Adam Marck (Payson) 31-17 (Dec 13-6)
Parker Jensen (Skyline) 36-3 won by decision over Bryson Laris (Uintah) 34-7 (Dec 10-3)
Jordan Crofts (Skyline) 46-3 won by fall over Ryan Gunn (Box Elder) 9-8 (Fall 1:31)
Hayden Brown (Bountiful) 32-8 won by decision over Harrison Riggs (Mountain View) 28-11 (Dec 7-2)
Korbon Tibbals (Maple Mountain) 52-4 won by fall over Cameron Savage (Payson) 25-17 (Fall 1:13)
Tyler Gleed (Orem) 30-11 won by fall over Cameron Latu (Olympus) 22-10 (Fall 1:47)
Ipuauro Netzler (Highland) 45-8 won by fall over Colton Rigby (Mountain View) 34-13 (Fall 1:10)
Ben Bos (Wasatch) 48-4 won by fall over Fosi Nathan (Kearns) 14-5 (Fall 0:33)
Joseph Trujillo (Spanish Fork) 30-13 won by decision over Brad King (Maple Mountain) 42-14 (Dec 7-4)
Riley Taylor (Box Elder) 33-10 won by fall over Brigham Hughes (Salem Hills ) 21-9 (Fall 5:59)
Wednesday’s 4A Quarterfinal Team Results
1. Wasatch, 130.5
2. Maple Mountain, 119.0
3. Uintah, 84.5
4. Box Elder, 82.5
5. Payson, 76.5
6. Salem Hills, 61.0
7. Mountain View, 38.5
8. Woods Cross, 38.0
9. Kearns, 35.0
10. Bountiful, 34.0
10. Skyline, 34.0
12. Highland, 28.0
13. Orem, 26.0
14. Spanish Fork, 24.5
15. Alta, 24.0
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