Homer Alaska - Sports

Story last updated at 8:53 PM on Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Wyatt pins down triple crown at state club tournament, Popeyes win medals Peninsula wrestlers make strong showing

By Chris Perk
For the Homer News

Homer High School senior Mitch Wyatt topped off his state championship resume with the triple crown at the Alaska USA Folkstyle, Freestyle and Greco-Roman state tournaments in Wasilla last weekend.

Wyatt, who won the state high school wrestling championship at 171 pounds in December, dominated all three tournaments of Alaska club wrestling the junior category, 189-pound division.

Wyatt earned his first freestyle wrestling state title on his way to the first Alaska USA Wrestling triple crown by defeating Trent Shepersky of the Fairbanks Ice Man team on three consecutive days. Shepersky had defeated Wyatt twice last year, but avoided a match up during the last high school season by dropping a weight class. In their first match, Wyatt made a dramatic win by fall and continued to finish all of his matches in a technical fall or pin. The senior plans to continue his wrestling career at Mesa State College in Colorado in the fall.

Wyatt was not the only highlight for the Popeye Team, which brought 40 wrestlers to the three-day, 1,300 wrestler state club wrestling tournament.

Teddy Croft won 16 matches, the same number he wrestled the entire season, during the meet. Croft came in a close second place in all three tournaments, losing only to Evan Bockman of the Anchorage BattleCats. The 90 pound novice weight class that Croft competed in featured a wide array of talent from around the state, and left Croft with a peppering of bruises on his body.

Danny Rios, schoolboy 152, also earned a state title. Rios won four matches to take the folkstyle championship and went on to place third in both the Greco and freestyle tournaments. Perk said the weight class was evenly matched with a different winner each day.

Wayne Newman, intermediate 80, won the Greco tournament with four match wins and took fourth place Saturday's freestyle tourney.

Jadin Mann, intermediate 120+, won both the Greco and freestyle tournaments, but his age category was not allowed to wrestle all three days.

Danny Maccierelo won the open 132.5 division and placed fourth and third in the 145.5 weight division.

In the Girls Only tournament, Mckenzie Cook, intermediate 70; Kaitlyn Rios, intermediate 87; and Rylie Alborn, intermediate 96, all won girls state championship titles. Austin Shafford, intermediate 65, won six matches before losing in the finals to western regional champion Rush Fannon of Wasilla's Mid Valley team.

Ben Hawkenson, junior 265, won three matches during the freestyle competition and earned his way into the finals before losing to Ryan Pomrefke of Wasilla.

Mark McGregor, junior 152, placed second in the Greco and freestyle competitions, losing both days to state champion Tyler Adams of Wasilla. McGregor nearly pinned Adams and won the Greco competition on points, but Adams tied the score and then won on a technicality.

Wyatt Alborn placed second in the novice 130 pound division on all three days, losing for the first time in two years to an opponent from Palmer. Alborn had won nearly 40 matches in a row before this meet.

Calvin Johnson, cadet, 91, took second in folkstyle and third in Greco and freestyle.

Cody Macy, school boy 112, placed second in the Greco and third in the freestyle competition.

Novice wrestlers Tristen Cook, 95 pounds, and Jaime Rios, 100, both placed in the top six on all three days.

Full results are available at www.homernews.com/sports.

Chris Perk is coach of the Popeye Wrestling Club.