Hayden wrestling eyes regionals after Saturday's Meeker Tournament

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— Saturday’s Meeker Wrestling Tournament proved to be more about fine tuning and staying healthy for next weekend for the Tigers than it was about looking to further bolster their 2013-14 trophy case.

With the 2A Region 1 tournament beginning next week, Hayden coach Chad Jones simply was hoping to get his squad on and off the mats still healthy Saturday, but at least a few Tigers scored wins against quality competition along the way.

In the duals-style tournament, Hayden’s Tyler Hockaday scored a pair of pins at 106 pounds against Basalt and Coal Ridge. Likewise, Journey Vreeman scored a decision win against Meeker’s Devon Pontine and a pin against Coal Ridge at 160 pounds.

Taylor Lewis was the only other Tiger to grab a win against his Meeker opponent — which boasts one of the top rosters in the state. Lewis pinned Meeker’s Chase Rule and scored another pin against Coal Ridge at 182 pounds.

“It’s getting to the end of the season and we’re just trying to tune up,” Jones said.

Meeker proved to be the top contender at its home tournament, cruising to dominant duals wins over Hayden, Coal Ridge and Basalt. No other duals results were immediately available.

Against Basalt, Hayden’s Michael Ferrier also pinned his way to victory at 113 pounds and Tommy Wade grabbed the 152-pound win with a pin of his own. All other Tiger victories in the dual were via forfeit.

Down the back stretch of the season, Hayden has suffered a few significant blows on the injury front. Tyler Paxton at 138 pounds is lost for the season and Jones said he is hoping to get Tyler Boyer and Tate Montieth back by next weekend.

“Paxton was a huge loss,” Jones said. “He gets you two pins a tournament. It was hard to lose him.

“We’re getting ready for regionals,” Jones added. “We went down to Meeker with the attitude of staying healthy.”

To reach Ben Ingersoll, call 970-871-4204, email bingersoll@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @BenMIngersoll

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