By: Butch Harmon
Birch Run wrestlers first, Alma second at Tri Valley Conference Championships
By GREG CHRAPEK
Two of the premier Division 3 wrestling teams in the state battled it out Saturday for supremacy at the Tri Valley Conference Championships.
Birch Run, ranked seventh in the state in Division 3, came away with the league title with a total of 206 points while Alma, ranked eighth in Division 3, took second with 186 points. St. Louis placed third with 119.5 points while Millington (114 points) and Shepherd, ranked ninth in Division 3, rounded out the top five with 111 points at the 19-team tournament.
Birch Run crowned a total of five conference champions. Ty Tanner upped his record to 35-4 for the season as he won the 145-pound title. The Panthers dominated the upper weight classes with Brockton Cook improving to 40-3 for the season as he won the 215-pound title and Terrance Watson upped his record to 39-5 as he won the 285-pound crown. Macintyre Breece improved to 36-3 for the season as he won the 125-pound title and Christian Miller improved to 36-6 as he won the 130-pound crown.
Placing second for Birch Run were Nolan Bovee (140), Kyle Parlberg (152) and Trenton Naragon (160) while Ben Mudge (171) placed fourth.
Alma finished the day with a pair of conference champions. Jarrett Ferman improved to 30-3 for the year as he won the 135-pound title. Justin VanBlaricum won the 160-pound title as he upped his record to 26-8.
Solomon Rosales (119) and Dametrius Castillo (125) both placed second. Placing fourth for Alma were Adam Garcia (140), Jacob Munger (145) and Norman Davis (215). Mason Everitt (285) and Josiah Baltierra (130) placed fifth with Coleton Garrett finishing sixth (189 pounds).
St. Louis was led by the quartet of Alex Newton (112), Gavin Giles (130), Ryan Downs (145) and Isaac Howd (152) who all placed third. Robert Long-Terwilliger (103) placed fifth while Craig Bebow (119), Robert Russell (140) and Ean Bradley (215) placed sixth for the Sharks.
Senior Trevor Robinson led the way for Shepherd. Robinson improved his record to 37-2 for the season as he won the 152-pound title. Kevin Smith upped his record to 30-7 as he placed second at 285 pounds. Hunter Dysinger (140) placed third, Jaden Carl (160) finished fourth, Max Kyser (145) placed fifth and Kam Hill (103) took sixth for the Blue Jays.
A pair of sophomores won conference championships for Millington. Jack Sherman improved to 31-6 for the season as he won the 112-pound title and Hunter Norris improved to 36-1 as he won the 119-pound crown.
Ithaca was led by senior Darren Gutierrez who won the 171-pound title. Junior Chanc McCormack (215) placed second and senior Ethan Scholl (285) took third for the Yellowjackets.
A pair of freshmen won conference titles. St. Charles freshman Isaiah Mullins improved to 27-2 for the season as he won the 103-pound title while Bullock Creek freshman Peyton Brooks improved to 34-5 as he won the 140-pound crown.
Garber senior Zach Basket improved to 23-2 for the year as he won the 189-pound title.
Hemlock was led by senior Josh Kenny (135) and sophomore Jeremy Wazny (189) who both placed third.