Dakota Stormer Headed To States After Second Place Finish In Junior High Junior Olympic District Wrestling Championships, Four Others Just Miss Trip, With Thirds (02/24/14)

(By Coach Lee Weber)

AA and AAA teams as far as Bradford and Oswayo Valley to Marion Center and West Branch participated in the Junior High, Junior Olympic Wrestling Championships, at St. Marys High School, on Sunday, February 23rd. We had only ten Junior High wrestlers from Clarion Area participate, but five finished in the Top Three. The boys made some mistakes in a few matches but overall, it was a good team showing. We had many compliments from other coaches for the boys no quit attitude.

Dakota Stormer, the 4th seed, went 4-1 today against tough competition and earned himself a trip to states, by taking 2nd place. He started out by pinning Ty Rowe of Brookville, in the quarters, but lost to the top seed and eventual champion Mike Stewart of Marion Center 5-0. In the consolation, Dakota faced Hunter Barnett of Brookville and ended the match quickly with a pin. Against the 3rd seed, Mitchell Cashmer, Dakota once again his signature “gator roll” and pinned the 3rd seed to give him an opportunity for “true second.” In order to get that opportunity, the top seed Mike Stewart had to beat Zac Becker the 2nd seed. In a very close match, Stewart did win 5-4 over Becker.

Dakota only has 3 losses this year, one to Stewart earlier in the day and two to Becker (at the Clarion Tournament and finals in AA Districts, last week). Dakota wanted the opportunity badly and he got his wish! He took advantage of the opportunity and controlled and dominated Becker for an 8-1 win to advance to States! Dakota will be heading to Hempfield near Pittsburgh for the State Championship next Saturday and Sunday.

Login Dehner, a seventh grader, wrestled hard but came up short in the semis and lost 4-2 to Brayden Altobelli of Redbank Valley. In the consolation finals, the fast-moving Dehner countered everything Nathan Graham of West Branch threw at him and pinned him with a ¾ nelson to take 3rd place.

Ryley McMaster, an eighth grader and unseeded, had a bad draw and drew top seeded Steven Sorbin of Brookville and lost by fall. Ryley came back strong and pinned Molly Frederick of Bradford and Cameron Travis of Redbank Valley to give himself an opportunity for “true second.” Ryley wrestled well but came up short and lost to the 2nd seed Carter Tuttle of Coudersport to earn the 3rd place medal.

Colton Rapp, an eighth grader and 4th seeded, received a bye in the first round and faced John Tibbs of Redbank Valley, in the quarters and won by fall. In the semis, Rapp lost a hard fought bout against undefeated Curtis Mohney of Redbank Valley 2-1. In the consolation, Rapp faced 5th seeded Josh Keesecker of Brookville and made quick work of him with a fall in the first. For the 3rd place medal, Rapp controlled a strong 3rd seeded opponent from St. Marys, Tim Beimel, by beating him 4-0. Rapp did not get the opportunity for “true second,” due to Mohney’s loss in the finals, to the second seed.

Carter Shipley, a ninth grader and unseeded, started out with a tough loss by losing in overtime to 4th seeded Pierce Yahner of Brockway but in the consolations, Carter avenged that loss by pinning Yahner for the 3rd place medal. In his “true second” match, Carter wrestled with aggression and loss to the top seed by fall attempting to throw him in a bear hug.

Others that participated were Sterling Conner, Josh Kriebel, Mike McCloskey, Karlin Hiles, and Cole Boyer. Sterling, an eighth grader, went 2-2 and wrestled very well by beating Dylan Meyers of Curwensville, losing to 2nd seed Charlie Beatty of Marion Center, beating Logan Deats of Punxsy, and losing to 3rd place finisher Spencer Long of Brookville.

Josh Kriebel, a ninth grader, went 1-2 but had a very competitive weight class. Josh lost to 4th place finisher Clayton Peace of Brookville in a very close quarter final match. Josh then beat Mason Lancaster of Curwensville, in probably the most exciting match of the day, by the score of 14-12. In his third match, Josh was winning but got caught high and lost by fall to Jared Whiting of Cameron County.

Mike McCloskey, a ninth grader, wrestled very well against a strong 3rd seeded Brandon Cherry of Ridgway, but lost late in the match. In his match against Aaron Kriley of Marion Center, it went back and forth but Mike made 1 more mistake than his opponent and lost a very close match to finish 0-2.

Cole Boyer, a ninth grader, lost to 2nd seeded Trey Kalke of West Branch and 6th seeded Logan Minich of Redbank Valley, but came through with a win against Tanner LaBenne of Brookville.

Karlin Hiles, a ninth grader, beat Tanner LaBenne of Brookville 8-6, then faced top seeded Brad Smith of Marion Center and lost by fall. In the consolation, Karlin lost to the 4th seeded Lucas Swortwood of West Branch to end a very successful year for himself.

2nd – Dakota Stormer, state qualifier
3rd – Login Dehner, Ryley McMaster, Colton Rapp, Carter Shipley
5th – Sterling Conner
7th – Josh Kriebel, Karlin Hiles, Cole Boyer
Participation – Mike McCloskey

(Thanks to Coach Weber for this article. Best wishes to Dakota Stormer at States!!!!)