Thursday, February 22, 2018

Bulldog wrestlers defeat Belgrade, place 16th at Bozeman Invitational

The Hardin Bulldog wrestling team traveled to the Gallatin Valley last weekend, where they dualed against Belgrade on Thursday, and competed in the Bozeman Invite on Friday and Saturday.

“We wrestled well,” said Head Coach Travis Kreiger. “We’re really starting to show improvement.”

At Belgrade, the Bulldogs grappled their way to a 51-22 victory. They scored five pins against the Panthers with pins by Kreece Robinson at 103, Eric LaFontaine at 113, Michael Parra at 126, Phillip Rising Sun at 132 and Justin Zier at 145.

Connor Murdock defeated Raven Cunningham of Belgrade 11-5.

At the Bozeman Invite, the Bulldogs placed 16th out of 30 teams and placed two wrestlers. At 182, Connor Murdock pinned Helena Capital’s David Peterson in 2:40 for a third place victory.

Kreiger pointed out that the 182 championship match was between Randy Keesler of Great Falls and Raven Cunningham, who Murdock defeated in Belgrade.

“The championship match was during the quarterfinal when Keesler defeated Murdock 3-2. It was a battle,” said Kreiger. “It came down to seeding in the brackets; it was just the luck of the draw.”

If Murdock had been on the other side of the bracket he would have been wrestling for first or second place.

The only other Bulldog to place was Eric Lafontaine, who came in at eighth place.

“He wrestled well to get into that spot,” said Kreiger. “He battled back, got into placing, and came out and destroyed the Billings West kid.”

Not placing, but getting into the second day of action were Justin Zier, and Bryce and Brenden Roan.

Kreiger said, “Those three freshman wrestled their butts off. That was really good to see.”

“We had 20 kids entered at Bozeman and all wrestled well,” he said. “They’re realizing they can compete.”

This weekend, Hardin will be traveling to the Miles City for the Cowboy invitational.

Hardin 51, Belgrade 22

103: Kreece Robinson, Har, pin Jared Rockwell, 1:12. 113: Eric LaFontaine, Har, pin Brandon Rockwell, :21. 120: Sawyer Degen, Bel, mdec. Brenden Roan, 102. 126: Michael Parra, Har, pin Jose Andicoechea, 3:28. 132: Phillip Rising Sun, Har, pin Maliya Kai, 1:52. 138: Jarrett Degen, Bel, pin Gidion Herbel, 3:05. 145: Justin Zier, Har, pin Josiah Green, :38. 152: Patrick Toyne, Har, won by forfeit. 160: Austin Pitsch, Har, won by forfeit. 170: Brandon Becker, Har, won by forfeit. 182: Connor Murdock, Har, dec. Raven Cunningham, 11-5. 205: Thomas Towner, Bel, pin Uriah Turner, 2:00. 285: Grady Blewett, Bel, pin Lane Rides Horse, 5:59.

Bozeman Invitational

Team scores: 1, Great Falls, 219.5; 2, Missoula Sentinel, 192.5; 3, Powell (Wyo.), 179; 4, Billings Skyview, 145; 5, Missoula Big Sky, 140; 6, Great Falls CMR, 125; 7, Billings Senior, 119.5; 8, Bozeman, 117; 9, Forsyth, 116; 10, Colstrip, 106; 11, Helena Capital, 95; 12, Helena, 93.5; 13, Huntley Project, 93; 14, Belgrade, 88; 15, Billings West, 84.5; 16, Hardin, 81; 17, Butte, 79.5; 18, Laurel, 70; 19, Butte Central, 61; 20, Cody, Wyo., 52.5; 21, Columbus-Absarokee, 50.5; 22, Dillon, 45; 23, Whitehall, 39; 24, Bozeman JV, 38.5; 25, Missoula Hellgate, 27; 26, Shepherd, 23; 27, Billings Central, 17; 28, Miles City, 13; 29, Livingston, 11; 30, Lone Peak, 0.
182 — First place: Randy Keesler, GF, t.f. Raven Cunningham, Bel, 20-5.
Third place: Connor Murdock, Har, p. David Petersen, Cap, 2:40.
Fifth place: Blake Jessen, HP, p. Ty Dearcorn, Pow, 2:31.