Competing with a reduced lineup, the Hillsboro wrestling team finished 10th among the 21 schools competing at the Eureka Invitational Friday and Saturday.
The Trojans, with four top-six individual finishes, scored 67.5 team points. El Dorado won the tournament with 173.
“We only competed with six at Eureka this weekend as we sent three others to the JV tournament at Stafford and Tyrell Thiessen had been battling illness late in the week, so we decided to keep him out,” coach Scott O’Hare said.
Hillsboro’s highest finishes was a pair of third-place performances. Sophomore Jesse Meier went 4-1 at 160 pounds, and senior Tanner Jones went 3-1 at 170 pounds.
“I am so proud of Jesse Meier on his third-place finish,” O’Hare said. “I love the effort and hard work he puts in, and this week he is finally starting seeing the rewards of that effort. This was easily his best performance to date.
“Tanner took care of business in the opening match of the tournament and wrestled a solid semifinal match against the No. 4 ranked wrestler in Class 3-2-1A,” O’Hare said.
“After battling to a 1-1 tie at the end of regulation, Tanner shot in on a nice single-leg attack, which was countered by his opponent, forcing a scramble. Tanner eventually surrendered the takedown, losing 3-1.”
Freshman Austin Cross placed fourth at 145 pounds with a 3-2 record and junior Preston Nelson was fifth at 152 pounds with a 2-2 finish.
Cross just missed third place.
“After coming out strong in his match for third place, taking an early lead, the lead dwindled to just one point with time running out,” O’Hare said. “On a controversial call, he gave up a takedown at the end of regulation to lose 9-8 and finish fourth.”
Although Nelson lost his semifinal match to the eventual champion, O’Hare was impressed with his performance.
“After taking an early lead and looking solid in the top position most of the period, with time running out he got caught out of position and was stacked and pinned while still in the offensive position,” O’Hare said. “He then suffered a hard fought 8-3 loss, having to settle for fifth place.”
Also competing for Hillsboro were sophomore Jon Carey, who went 1-2 at 120 pounds, and freshman Levi Mendosa, who was 0-2 at 182 pounds.
“Both Jon and Levi show a lot of heart and determination,” O’Hare said. “They compete hard and I believe they will both be strong wrestlers for us over the next few years.”
Overall, O’Hare said he was pleased with his team’s performance.
“With Tyrell not able to compete, we slid down in the team standings quite a bit compared to previous tournaments,” he said. “He has consistently scored 20 to 25 team points per tournament for us, so not having him really hurt from a team standpoint.
“However, our focus really needed to be on individual performances, and I thought we had some pretty good ones.”
At the junior varsity tournament in Stafford, Zac Ghahremanzadeh finished second with a 2-2 record at 182 pounds, Matt Reeh was third at 285 with a 1-2 record and Dermot Morey went 0-4 at 285.
Coming—The Trojans will compete Friday at Hoisington. Matches begin at 3 p.m.