Steamboat Springs Steamboat Springs High School wrestling’s win Saturday in the Carl Ramunno Invitational — its home tournament — meant a ton to the Sailors’ seniors.
It’s a tournament the group of upperclassmen have posted win after win competing in over the years, Steamboat coach Shane Yeager said.
But it was the performances from a pair of Steamboat freshman that stole the show and vaulted the team to a first-place finish in the 11-school pool.
Freshmen Dakota Thvedt at 113 pounds and Matthew Hansen at 132 pounds were the Sailors’ only individual wins in their respective weight classes. Their effort, combined with a handful of podium finishes for the Sailors, gave Steamboat enough points (151.5) to edge out second-place Hayden with 124 team points and Glenwood Springs with 117.
“It makes me feel really good for my last year coming here,” said senior Cole Sittig, who cut around 20 pounds the past week to wrestle at 220, where he took second. “I didn’t get to win personally, but having that trophy means a lot.”
Colton Crawford took second in the 120-pound division for Steamboat. Gage Reynolds was fourth at 145 pounds, Dylan Wallace was second at 170 and Connor O’Brien was runner up at 182. Ethan Labriola was third at 106 pounds and senior Brandon Yeager lost the 195-pound championship match for second. Heavyweight Devin Scanlon grabbed silver for the Sailors.
Hayden, competing shorthanded because of a slew of injuries, also grabbed a pair of wins at the Steamboat Invitational. The Tigers’ Christian Carson edged out Wallace at 170 pounds for his gold medal, and Taylor Lewis avenged a pair of losses to Steamboat’s O’Brien for the 182-pound championship.
“I think our kids wrestled excellent,” Hayden coach Chad Jones said. “We’re all beat up right now. We don’t have our real team. I think they shored up their technique a bit. There was some good competition, but we are just beat up right now.”
The Tigers also grabbed a trio of runner-up finishes by Tanner Guire (126 pounds), Kent Miller (145 pounds) and Journey Vreeman (160 pounds), but it was the 113-pound third-place match that really got Jones fired up.
Freshman Michael Ferrier battled back to steal the win from Eagle Valley’s Jay Bullock, causing Jones to jump out of his coach’s seat and pump a fist.
Ferrier "wrestled one of the best matches I’ve ever seen out of him today,” Jones said. “I was just amazed at the effort he put in. Our young kids are following the leadership of our older kids.”
At 106 pounds, Hayden’s Tyler Hockaday was fourth. Tommy Wade was third at 152 pounds, and Hunter Rummel was fourth at 220.
Soroco had a pair of podium finishers, as well, with Colton Martindale taking third at 126 and Cody Constine grabbing bronze at 195.
For Steamboat, an already tough season schedule is going to get a little more challenging Saturday at Thomas Jefferson in a 4A and 5A exclusive tournament. Hayden and Soroco will be at Center’s Valley Classic the same day.
“We’re still growing,” Shane Yeager said. “Last weekend down in Evergreen we finished with a second. We left some matches out there. We finished first today, and we left some matches here, too. We need to clean it up a little bit.”
To reach Ben Ingersoll, call 970-871-4204, email bingersoll@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @BenMIngersoll