Juneau-Douglas High School finished seventh at the Brandon Pilot Invitational Wrestling Tournament on Saturday, but had some strong performances on its senior night.
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Wasilla flew down from the Mat-Su valleys to win the tournament with 173 points. Petersburg and Wrangell tied for second place with 150 points each.
The match of the night proved to be the 152-pound title bout between Petersburg's Bobby Egan and Juneau's Steven Dyer. Egan handed Dyer his first loss of the year, winning 10-8.
Egan led Dyer 6-4 heading into the third period.
After Dyer cut Egan's lead to 6-5 after being awarded a penalty point, Egan bounced back and scored a takedown to make the score 8-5. Dyer refused to quit, however, and quickly escaped from Egan's grasp to cut the lead to 8-6.
With just 33 second left in the match, Dyer scored a match-tying takedown as the bout appeared destined for overtime. However, Egan scored a reversal with 10 seconds left and rode out Dyer for the win.
"I feel I did pretty good," said Dyer, who nose was still bloodied after the match. "I gave it all I had ... you can't do better than your best. Honestly, I don't feel bad about the loss."
Dyer, who entered the tournament as the state's top ranked Class 4A 152-pound wrestler, according to Web site www.akmat.org, remains a contender for Southeast Conference and state titles. After the match, his focus moved to the future for himself and his team.
He said of the upcoming tournaments, "It's been my goal since eighth grade to win that (a regional title), and then, ultimately, state."
JDHS coach Kris Mercer seemed very pleased with Dyer's performance as he discussed the match between his 152-pounder and Egan, currently ranked fourth among Class 1-2-3A 152-pounders, according to www.akmat.org.
"Best match of the season so far," Mercer said. "I pushed (Dyer) as far as I could, and thank you to Bobby Egan for pushing back. I think we got Steven's attention."
Other JDHS seniors wrestling at home for the last time included Chris Twomley, Colton Baker and Ramiro Lamas. Also, senior manager Alisha Mack did the scoring for her last time at the Pilot Invitation Wrestling Tournament.
Baker, who competed at 171 pounds, took fourth overall after falling to Wrangell's Troy Winchester in the third-place match.
"We did better than we did last tournament," said Baker.
Despite being a senior, this is Baker's first year on the wrestling team. Despite falling in the third place match, he appeared very upbeat and is improving.
At 215 pounds, Lamas enjoyed a strong performance en route to a third-place finish.
Lamas defeated Craig's Patrick Quigley 12-1 for third place.
"It felt great," an excited Lamas said. "I came off a loss today, I just came back and fought strong. I feel very happy (about) my performance."
Still sweating from carrying equipment out of the gymnasium after the last match for Juneau of the tournament, Mercer said of his team's performance, "We did as expected, we aren't as strong as we have been in the past. It was good for us."
Up next for Juneau-Douglas will be a tournament in Petersburg starting Nov. 30. It will be the Crimson Bears' final competition before the regional tournament on Dec. 7-8 in Sitka. To qualify for the state tournament, a wrestler must make the finals of the regional tournament.
"We're going to push it a little harder this week," Mercer said. "I think we'll skip Thanksgiving this week and go right to practice."
BRANDON PILOT INVITATIONAL TOURNAMENT
Friday-Saturday, Juneau-Douglas High School
1) Wasilla, 173. 2) Petersburg, 150. 2) Wrangell, 150. 4) Mount Edgecumbe, 128. 5) Sitka, 110.5. 6) Palmer, 105. 7) Juneau-Douglas, 103. 8) Ketchikan, 97.5. 9) Craig, 73. 10) Hoonah, 53. 11) Klawock, 38.5. 12) Metlakatla, 19. 13) Skagway, 14.
103-Nelson, Wa, pinned J. Rogers, Mt.E.
112-Abt, S, pinned Baxter, C.
119-Foote, Ket, def. Chafin, Wa 3-2.
125-Martin, Ket, def. T. Rogers, Mt.E 3-1.
130-Lopez, Pet, def. Riley, Mt.E 5-3.
135-Erickson, Pet, major dec. Norris, H, 14-6.
140-Stahler, Pal, pinned Pahnke, Pal.
145-Lehman, S, def. Marshall, Wa. 4-1.
152-B. Egan, Pet, def. Dyer, JDHS, 10-8.
160-Groshong, Wr., def. K. Egan, Pet., 4-3.
171-Stockton, Kla., pinned Daly, Pal.
189-Young, Mt.E, pinned Davidson, Wr.
215-E. Pempek, Wr., def. Russell, Wa., 9-3.
285-Johnson, Wa. pinned Kisarauskas, S.
103-Schwartz, Pet, def. Anderson, C 9-4.
112-M. Rogers, Mt.E, pinned Coutlee, H.
119-George, Wa., def. Phillips, Pet., 6-2.
125-Wimberley, Wr., pinned Brown, Wa.
130-Gross, Wa., def. Fultz, Ket., 4-3.
135-Muzechuk, Wa., major dec. Chafin, Wa.
140-Powell, Wr., def. Frisby, Mt.E 3-2.
145-Skaflestad, H, major dec. John, Ket., 17-5.
152-Johnson, S, def. Brown, Wr., OT
160-Thain, C, def. Barry, JDHS, 2-0.
171-Winchester, Wr., def. Baker, JDHS, 7-2.
189-Heindel, Pal., pinned Timm, Ket.
215-Lamas, JDHS, major dec. Quigley, C, 12-1.
285-J. Craig, Pet., pinned W. Craig, Pet.