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for the week of January 20-27


Wrestlers bounce back in championships


blue01_next.gifBy Glen Miller/The Mustang News


EDMOND — Less than 24 hours after suffering its first dual loss of  the season, Mustang High School’s wrestling team bounced back to dominate the field at the 2005 Metro Athletic Conference Championships.

Mustang placed 11 of the 13 wrestlers entered in the event and sent eight grapplers to the finals. It was the third straight MAC championship for the Broncos.

“We drew several number one seeds in the first round and I told the kids they needed to have a short memory if they did lose and to wrestle back through the consolation,” Mustang coach Dave Rankin said.

“Wrestling back through the consolation was the key. You are always going to have the kids that get you the big points, but the kids need to understand that placement points in consolation are so important to the team. Especially when you get to regional and state, they are huge.”

Mustang ended the tournament with 188.5 team points, followed by Edmond North with 160.5 and Choctaw with 152. Putnam City West was a distant fourth with 89, while Putnam City was fifth with 66 and Yukon sixth with 60. Putnam City North scored 57 points for seventh place and Edmond Santa Fe was last with 36.

“My biggest surprise has been the kids’ great attitude,” Rankin said. “They have all got a winning attitude and it’s carrying over to their wrestling.”

In the consolation rounds, Jake Henthorn used a second-period near fall and a reverse in the third period to beat Mathew Le of Putnam City North for third place. At 140 pounds, Tyler Stitt took fourth place after an 8-1 loss to Choctaw’s Matt Creek and Logan Rankin was fourth at 145 pounds after losing by technical fall.

Mustang took eight wrestlers to the finals, with the first six winning the gold. Timmy Taylor (125) scored a pair of takedowns and two-point near falls before pinning Choctaw’s Braton Danielson at the 5:32 mark.

Austin Slater (130) had a reverse, two-point near fall and a three-point near fall in the third period to highlight a 15-1 technical fall over Edmond North’s Connor Robinson. Jake Edmonds (135) had a takedown and a three-point near fall on Lyndall Rhodes of Choctaw before Rhodes injury defaulted.

Michael Riffel scored a pair of three-point near falls in the first round before pinning Cole Ballou of Putnam City West at the 3:35 mark of their 152-pound final. Duncan Evans (160) scored a reverse and near fall in the third period to cap off an 11-6 win over Putnam City’s Nate Irwin.

Unseeded Blake Ramey wrestled through the 171-pound bracket unscathed. In the finals he scored a reverse and near fall before pinning Jordan Willoughby of Edmond North at 5:06.

Jonathan Hacker posted an escape and reverse in the third period of his 189-pound final, but ended up with the silver after a 6-4 loss to Brandon Booth of Yukon. Colby Lassley reached the finals at 215 pounds before losing to West’s Jeremy Johnson by fall.

“I didn’t think we would have that many champions. Mustang won last year and I don’t think they had a champion. But this year we took eight to the finals and the first six were champs and that was a pleasant surprise,” Rankin said.




























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