Winning a Great Basin Conference dual meet hasn't happened often for Wood River High School wresters team since the Wolverines joined the 4A ranks for the 2004-05 season.
Only once, a 36-30 home win over Century of Pocatello Dec. 7, 2007, has it been done. And Wood River hadn't beaten its regional rivals Minico, Jerome and Burley since coming up from the 3A division.
But third-year Wood River coach Tyson Young and his dedicated coaching staff has the Wolverines fired up this season—and they showed it Friday with a strong effort from veterans and newcomers in a 45-39 home win over Burley.
Wood River got pins from senior 189-pounder JJ Thomson and freshman Auden Ruhter at 215, then added pins at 130 from junior Nick Chase and at 135 from freshman Conner Bennett. Those wins, combined with freshman Andrew Beck's hard-fought 11-9 decision at 119, put Hailey over the top.
Thomson has come a long way during his Hailey mat career and he showed his enthusiasm and progress with a 2:52 pin at 189. Ruhter has given Wood River a nice 1-2 punch in the upper weights. He followed suit with a 1:36 fall at 215.
The pivotal match was Beck's tussle at 119. Beck used five takedowns to hold off Burley's Terry Aldrich in a dandy 11-9 match. Chase and Bennett put together back-to-back pins at 130 and 135—Bennett breaking a 6-6 with his second-period fall—and Hailey's boys finished a very productive night.
Young said, "What an awesome night and a great job by all the guys who battled in front of our home crowd. The fans got a chance to see some exciting matches and experience first hand what Wood River wrestling is all about." Thursday, Wood River traveled to Hazelton for a triangular with Valley and Grace. Valley defeated the Wolverines 52-24 and Wood River took care of Grace 38-21.
WRHS winners by pin against Grace were Tanner Orchard at 145 and Thomson at 189. Tyler Bartlett had a 15-0 technical fall at 103 and Beck won 6-1 at 119. Forfeit winners were Chase 130, Tyler Jaramillo 140 and Auden Ruhter 215. In JV matches, Conner Bennett went 1-1 at 130 and Juve Ruiz won a pin at 171.
Against Valley, Thomson and Auden Ruhter pinned at 189 and 215, and Orchard and Kasey Barker prevailed by forfeit at 145 and 171.
Wood River traveled to Twin Falls and goes to the Sugar-Salem Invitational Jan. 30-31. Next home meet is Thursday, Feb. 5 against Minico and Buhl on the Hailey mat.
Wood River 45, Burley 39
103—Brandon Chesley (B) won 13-8 over Tyler Bartlett (WR soph).
112—Michael Durfee (B) won by fall 1:51 over Zach Brown (WR freshman).
119—Andrew Beck (WR freshman) won 11-9 over Terry Aldrich (B).
125—Jason Konrad (B) won by forfeit.
130—Nick Chase (WR junior) won by fall 5:02 over Christian Parke (B).
135—Conner Bennett (WR freshman) won by fall 3:15 over Tyler Nelson (B).
140—Jacob Lake (B) won by fall 2:47 over Tyler Jaramillo (WR junior).
145—Tanner Orchard (WR junior) won by forfeit.
160—Andrew Orr (WR soph) won by forfeit.
171—Ryan Lott (B) won by fall 5:13 over Kasey Barker (WR soph).
189—JJ Thomson (WR senior) won by fall 2:52 over Tucker Lecheminent (B).
215—Auden Ruhter (WR freshman) won by fall 1:36 over Morgan McCracken (B).
285—Abel Delgado (B) won by forfeit.
Junior varsity matches
140—Zachary Ezell (WR freshman) won by fall 1:22 over Melvin Roberts (B).
171—Juve Ruiz (WR junior) won by fall 4:51 over Jesse Bywater (B).
Fantastic finish for Fish at Fairfield
It was truly a "Made for Hollywood" finish Friday night on the Fairfield hardwoods as The Community School Boy's varsity basketball team edged the Camas Mushers in an overtime thriller 44-41.
With the game tied 38-38 at the end of regulation, and again 41-41 with only one second remaining in overtime, Casper Brun buried a 3-point swisher at the buzzer to ignite a Cutthroat courtside celebration that extended well into the evening.
"We were due to win one of these tight ones," said Community School coach Ed Flory, whose team has won four Northside Conference league games in 10 tries. "In practice we talked about what it takes to finish a close game like this, and tonight our players really delivered."
In a seesaw battle with seven lead changes, pressure free throws and rowdy raucous fans, the Cutthroats (4-10, 2-5 home, 2-5 road) maintained a much calmer poise down the stretch than they had done in previous cliffhangers this winter season.
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