Prep wrestling: Payson brings home trophy for 2nd week in a row
For the second straight weekend, Payson has come home with the gold trophy from a prestigious wrestling tournament.
The Lions won the Viewmont Invitational this past weekend to go along with an undefeated performance the weekend prior at the Wasatch Intermountain Duals.
Payson bested the 16-team field at Viewmont by nearly 50 points, scoring 210.5 points while runner-up Box Elder posted 164.5. Host Viewmont was third with 157.5. Mountain Crest, the 4A champs from last season, were fourth at 139, while Delta rounded out the top five as the Rabbits pointed 129.
Payson crowned two individual champions as Cole Jensen (113) and Tyson Carter (170) climbed to the top of the podium.
Jensen won by technical fall over Mountain Crest’s Lee Terrell in his championship bout while Carter earned an exciting sudden victory win over Layton’s Alec Bolingbroke 6-4.
Tucker Naccarato (160) earned a silver medal as he was stopped by Timpanogos’ Holland Knudsen 5-2.
Payson showed great depth placing 11 grapplers in the top six. Wyatt Hone (132), Jorge Sanchez (138), Brock Loveless (145) and McCoy Cook (220) all were consolation champions while Quade Valerio (126) and Louis Williams (195) finished fourth with Harrison Judd (182) and Dakota Boss (285) placing sixth.
It should be noted that Payson also won the tournament, which bodes well for the Lions when they compete with the likes of Uintah, Mountain Crest and Bear River in the 4A race.
Besides the aforementioned Knudsen of Timpanogos, Utah County had another individual champion as Pleasant Grove’s Maika Tauteoli (220) won an epic clash with Kade Carlson of Corner Canyon. Tauteoli got a takedown in overtime to earn the 3-1 victory in a battle between the 6A and 5A state champions respectively from last season.
Pleasant Grove finished seventh as a team but only put a small handful of their actual varsity wrestlers in the tournament. American Fork finished eighth and Timpanogos was 13th.
Several Utah County teams competed at the Christmas Clash ran by USA Wrestling Utah and hosted at the Legacy Center in Farmington. The event featured both a varsity and JV tournament with 31 teams and also a youth tournament.
Westlake was the highest Utah County finisher as the Thunder placed third behind Spring Creek (Nevada) and Syracuse. Wasatch, competing mostly with junior varsity wrestlers, was fifth. Orem finished sixth, Mountain View eighth, Pleasant Grove (with all JV wrestlers) 13th, Spanish Fork 15th, Springville 17th, Provo 18th, Lehi 20th, and Lone Peak 22nd.
It should be noted that Orem went without Cooper Legas (195) but his teammate Austin Winterton, who like Legas is undefeated on the season, won the 182-pound division. Orem’s Devin Robins also won the 132-pound title to help the Tiger cause.
Westlake did crown one individual champions with Jacob Finlinson (120).
Also reaching the top of the podium was Spanish Fork’s Sam Dawe (285) who pinned Provo’s Jimmy Tomasi in the championship final in a battle of returning state placers.
Salem Hills competed at the Desert Storm tournament in St. George and placed sixth out of 32 teams as Merrell Morley won the 182-pound individual title for the Skyhawks.
In dual meet action during the week, Payson mauled Mountain View 58-15, Westlake beat Bingham 38-34, Wasatch whipped Maple Mountain 45-36, Uintah slammed Spanish Fork 74-6, Skyridge submerged Springville 64-15, and Timpanogos toppled Provo 61-18. In nonleague action, American Fork defeated Fremont 46-36 and Skyridge lambasted Lone Peak 69-12.
While the holiday break is coming up, many Utah County teams, along with Wasatch, will head out west to take part in the Reno Tournament of Champions, which is considered by many as the toughest tournament in the western United States. Action will start Friday and continue Saturday with a college tournament, in which many nonstarter Utah Valley University wrestlers will be taking part, happening Thursday.