Polson High School coach Bob Owen doesn’t want his wrestling team to start peaking now because Owen wants to see that happen when his team prepares for Divisionals in Columbia Falls.
Owen and his coaching staff got a chance to challenge his team pitting his wrestlers against predominantely Class AA schools Friday and Saturday at the Bozeman Invitational.
The Pirates got to face top-caliber competition and had six of their wrestlers place in Bozeman.
Polson had six wrestlers place en route to a sixth-place finish at the Bozeman Invitational. The highest placing competitor the Pirates had was Parker Adler (152), who placed second. RJ Pierre (113) placed third, and Bridger Wenzel (132) and Hunter Fritsch (170) both placed fourth. Other placers included Cameron Brown (145), who placed sixth and Mateo Quinones (120) was the other placer in Bozeman.
“That is the neatest part of our tournament is a chance to see some of the eastern teams and Billings schools that we don’t normally see during the regular season,” Owen said. “Every team that beat us was a Double-A except for Colstrip, who is a Class B-C. They nipped us and slid by at the end of the tournament.”
Owen has acknowledged several times during the season the Havre wrestling school is the team to beat in Class A and the Pirates recent performance in Bozeman solidifies that the Pirates will be strong candidates to bring home hardware when they compete at the Class A tournament in Billings Feb. 9-10.
“We won’t start peaking until the last couple of weeks of the season and it will pretty much be business as usual from here on out,” Owen said. “We have so much competition and it is hard to get in a lot of quality practices because we will have a dual meet and a Rocky Mountain Classic Friday and Saturday. The next few weeks we will have to pay attention to detail in practice and our wrestlers are willing to do it.”
How the Pirates do at state will most likely be dictated by how some of their younger wrestlers perform in the next four weeks, Owen said.
“We have that core group and those kids are going at it hard,” Owen said. “They are training hard and it’s really paying off for them. When we get to a competition, they are really doing well. We have three or four other kids that have to place for us at the state level. Luckily, we have the next four weeks to get them groomed for the state.”
Owen and his staff said they are getting the kids mentally prepared in the next four weeks as the team prepares to compete at the Rocky Mountain Classic in Missoula.
“They have to accept their role and want to train themselves,” Owen said. “We are working closely with some of these guys to help them go hard the next couple of weeks and see if we can get them over the hump. We have a few younger guys and there are times in the match that they just need a little more confidence. Sometimes they let their guard down and they get beat in the third period but recently there are some really good signs that we are getting them closer to that level.”
Owen said he is still working with the core group as they head into the Rocky Mountain Classic Jan. 12-13.
“That is what we are looking at is what takes you from a contender to a pretender,” Owen said.
If Owen & company can achieve this, they look to have a successful day when they get ready for Billings.
2018 Tom Leprowse Invitational
Bozeman High, Bozeman, MT
Friday-Saturday, January 5-6
Team scores: 1, Bozeman (Boz) 174; 2, Billings Senior (BSH) 156.5; 3, Butte (But)148; 4, Billings Skyview (BSv) 146.5; 5, Colstrip 136; 6, Polson (Pol) 132; 7, Great Falls (GFH) 111; 8, Hardin (Hard) 109; 9, Helena Capital (HCap)101; 10, Missoula Big Sky/Loyola (MBS) 100; 11, Missoula Sentinel (MSent) 99.5; 12, Billings West (BWH) 97; 13, CMR 88.5; 14, Kalispell Flathead (KFla) 80; 15, Helena (Hel) 79; 16, Huntley Project (HuPr) 77; 17, Forsyth (Fors) 67.5; 18, Bozeman JV (BozJ) 56; 19, Powell, WY (Pow) 55; 20, Whitehall 48; 21, Beaverhead County/Twin Bridges (BCTB) 45; 22, Belgrade (Belg) 42.5; 23, Cody, WY (Cody) 42; 24, Park 31; 25, Butte Central 30; 26, Billings Central (BlgsC) 23.5; 27, Laurel (Laur) 22.5; 28, Missoula Hellgate 12; T29, Belt 0; T-29, Columbus/Absarokee 0; T29, Custer County 0; T29, Lone Peak 0.
103B – JV 1st, Maysn Cowell (3-2), Polson
[1st rnd] bye; [2nd rnd] Maysn Cowell (POL) 1:05 p. Bridger Wilkes (BozJ); [qtr] Clayton Donally (HuPr) 4-0 dec. Cowell; [cons.qtr] Roy Russell 6-4 dec. Cowell; [JVtrny] bye; [JVsemi] Cowell 0:54 p. Colt Nicholson (Pow); [JV 1st pl] Cowell 7-5 sv. Camron Reilly (Fors).
113 – 3rd, RJ Pierre (5-1), Polson
[1st rnd] Rene Pierre (Pol) 0:32 p. David Kemp (Hel); [2nd rnd] Pierre 1:00 p. Moosie Henningsen (But); [qtr]Pierre 3:19 p. RJ Low Dog (BWH); [semi] Trevin Welzien (MBS) 9-0 md. Pierre; [cons.semi] Pierre 7-0 dec. Cruz Roijas (BSH); [3rd pl.] Pierre 9-2 dec. Easton Shupe (GFH)
120 – 7th, Mateo Quinones (5-2), Polson
[1st rnd] Mateo Quinones (Pol) 3:03 p. Damian Naldret (KFla); [2nd rnd] Bridger Lamb (BSv) 7-0 dec. Quinones; [cons.2nd rnd] Quinones 2:16 p. Dakota Thomas (MSent); [cons.3rd rnd] Quinones 3:00 p. Michael Maddox (Pow); [cons.4th rnd] Quinones 0:55 pin Jaxen Dean (HuPr); [cons.5th rnd] Bridger Lamb (BSv) 4-3 d. Quinones; [7th pl.] Quinones 4:27 p. Justen Unrein (BSH).
132 – 4th, Bridger Wenzel (4-2), Polson
[1st rnd] Bridger Wenzel (Pol) 3:10 p. Ethan Boyce (BlgsC); [2nd rnd] Wenzel 1:04 p. Bryant Rivenbark (BozJ); [qtr] Wenzel 3:25 p. Reece Eckley (MSent); [semi] Charlie Klepps, BSH, 5-1 d. Wenzel; [cons.semi] Wenzel 9-1 md. Lomas (GFH); [3rd pl.] Weber (Fors) 4-2 sv. Wenzel.
138A – JV 4th, Jarod Farrier (1-4), Polson
Quinton Spring (CMR) 5-2 dec. Jarod Farrier (Pol); Cole Bradford (HCap) 2:56 p. Farrier; [Jvtrny 138A] Farrier 0:29 p. Dylan O’Keefe (Boz); Russell Weinholz (GFH) 5-0 d. Farrier; Corey Linebaugh (Pow) 7-5 sv. Farrier.
145 – 6th, Cameron Brown (3-3), Polson
[1st rnd] Cameron Brown (Pol) 1:02 p. Sam Schmidt (HuPr); [2nd rnd] Brown 1:19 p. Dixon Keegan (BozJ); [qtr] Brown 13-2 md. Seth Boyd (BWH), 13-2; [semi] Chance McIane (Boz) 4-0 d. Brown; [cons.semi] Travis Schulte (HCap) 4:42 p. Brown; [5th pl.] Cade Kay (BSv) inj.def. Brown.
152 – 2nd, Parker Adler (4-1), Polson
[1st rnd] Parker Adler (Pol) 12-2 md. Luke Joy (MSent); [2nd rnd] Adler 1:18 p. Caleb Incoming (BSv); [qtr] Adler 1:24 p. Matthew Middleton (HuPr); [semi] Adler 6:16 p. Cooper Hoffman (BCDT); [1st pl.] Jace Rhodes (BWH) 13-5 md. Adler.
160A – JV 2nd, Garrett Croft (3-3), Polson
[1st rnd] Trevor Dillon (BSv) 12-4 md. Garrett Croft (Pol); Croft 1:38 p. Jaydn Hoff (BWH); Henry Koch (HuPr) 4:19 p. Croft; [JVtrny 160A] Croft 9-1 md. Eric Amaya (Belg); Croft 0:41 p. Jamus Dubois (Whth); [JV 1st pl.] Mason Fend (Laur) 2:35 p. Croft.
170 – 4th, Hunter Fritsch (4-2), Polson
[1st rnd] Hunter Fritsch (Pol) 1:03 p. Colten Siphakis (Belg); [2nd rnd] Fritsch 1:16 p. Bradden Rowles-Ortiz (BozJ); [qtr]
Fritsch 2:48 p. Bo Dearcorn (Pow); [semi] Brenden Roan (Hard) 17-13 d. Fritsch; [cons.semi] Fritsch 0:43 p. Mason Corcoran (MBS); [3rd pl.] Brock Bushfield (BSv) 2:02 p. Fritsch.
182 – JV 1st, Noah Humphrey (2-2), Polson
[1st rnd] Kameron Moreno (But) 8-3 d. Noah Humphrey (Pol); [cons.] Travis Tomei (GFH) 4-0 d. Humphrey; [JVtrny] bye; [JV semi] Humphrey 1:14 p. Chance Buday (CMR); [JV 1st pl.] Humphrey 4-1 d. Charlie Beaudrie (Cody).
ACRONYM KEY: d. (decision), md. (major decision), p. (pin/fall), sv. (sudden victory), pl. (place), rnd (round)