After a disappointing fifth-place finish at the Warrior Classic, Bo Pipher was at his best last week. Pipher (18-2), pinned Palisade senior Dalton Hannigan in 47 seconds to win the 2014 Montrose Indian Invitational.
It was Hannigan's first loss of the season. In the semifinals, Pipher, who was the No. 1 seed, won by a 15-4 decision over No. 2-seed Austin Shank of Olathe in the semifinals.
Also claiming tournament titles were Jesse Reed (126), Ty Coats (152), Logan Schopp (182), and Tony Darling at 285, who defeated No. 2-ranked Jesus Casillas of Montrose by a 5-3 decision for the championship.
At 160, Zach Milner was runner-up after a 5-4 loss to senior Keenan Willits of Pueblo County, who placed fourth at state his junior year. Freshman Gabe Ferguson opened with a loss by pinfall to Kolton Bradshaw of Montrose, then wrestled his way back, pinning Bradshaw in 1:18 to place third.
Josh Altman (120), Trevor Smith (195) and Joel Simianer also placed third.
It was a good day all around for the Eagles, who placed 10 wrestlers to win Saturday's tournament with 221 points. Berthoud scored 129.5 points to place second at the 13-team tournament.
The Eagles also upped their dual record to 8-1 last week with a 58-21 home win Friday over Pueblo West, one of four Class 4A-5A teams Paonia has on its schedule.
Ryan Schuman is a first-year head coach for Pueblo West. He wrestled for Southern Oregon University and, along with an old college teammate, is working to build the school's wrestling program.
"We are very young, two seniors, a lot of first-year wrestlers," said Schuman, who wrestled four freshmen and four sophomores at the dual. "I'd heard Paonia is a pretty prestigious program the last bunch of years, just looking at the banners (on the gym wall). And I know coach (Andy Pipher) is highly respected, and I wanted our guys to see the best."
Paonia's losses came at 220, when Simianer tweaked an ankle early in round one and lost by a 1-0 decision to Hunter Mooring, a ranked freshman. Sophomore Nick Brewer made the varsity team at 145 pounds to start the new year. Brewer lost his match but went just over 5 minutes against No. 2-ranked Travis Myers. Paonia also lost matches at 138 and 195 pounds.
Pueblo West also wrestled at Montrose, where it placed fifth. Schuman said the dual at Paonia was worth the effort. "We may want to come out here and see them again, because we were treated well," said Schuman. "The hardest part was the drive."
Paonia is scheduled to dual Meeker on Friday (Jan. 17) at 6 p.m. and will host Discovery Canyon, ranked No. 2 in Class 4A, on Saturday starting at 8 a.m.blog comments powered by Disqus