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Cougars ready to host big Don Runner wrestling invitational

Jan 16, 2014 - By Bruce Tippets, Sports Editor

The tournament starts at1 p.m. Friday with the early round matches in the double-elimination tournament, with the finals slated to start on.

The Shoshoni Wranglers have an eye on a top-three finish Saturday at the two-day annual Don Runner Invitational wrestling tournament at Wind River High School.

Teams invited to be in the double-elimination tournament are Big Piney, Cokevile, Dubois, Glenrock, Greybull/Riverside, Hanna-Elk Mountain, Hulett, Midwest, Kaycee, Kelly Walsh junior varsity, Kemmerer, Lander junior varsity, Lovell, Lyman, Moorcroft, Pinedale, Rawlins, Rocky Mountain, Riverton rjunior varsity, Rich County (Utah), Saratoga, Shoshoni, Upton, Wright, Wind River, Wyoming Indian, Burns, Lusk, Lingle and Sundance.

The tournament starts at 1 p.m. Friday.

The finals are Saturday afternoon.

"It will be fun to watch Shoshoni this year," Wind River coach James Cunningham said. "This is the best Shoshoni team I have seen in my 11 years of coaching."

Cokeville and Greybull/Riverside are the two other top teams 2-A teams expected to be in the field.

"I would like to encourage all the Fremont County fans to come and support the local teams," Cunningham said.

Shoshoni is ranked No. 3 in the Class 2-A wrestling rankings.

"I need my leaders to just be consistent and wrestle how they have been," SHS coach Tony Truempler said.

"I need some of my younger kids to step up a little bit."

The tournament is a mid-season preview for the state tournament.

Tournament officials score the top six places.

"Some of our younger guys will still score some points for us at a varsity tournament," Truempler said. "Every weekend they are coming on for us."

Wind River

John Thoman enters the Don Runner with the top individual record for Wind River at 106 points.

Thoman has put together an 18-2 mark.

Keanan Pfisterer is in the running for a high finish at 113 pounds, and Charles Oldman is a heavyweight contender.

Oldman has been bothered by an injury to start the season.

"Charles will most likely not be seeded for the tournament," Cunningham said.

"It's hard to say how good the division is when your wrestler has not competed because he has been hurt the first couple of months of the sesaon. ."

Dalton Perkins will miss the tournament because of an elbow injury.

Perkins is one of the leaders for Wind River.

"This is unfortunate because the Don Runner has a large impact on regional seeding," Cunningham said.

Shoshoni

Trinity Nitchman at 106 pounds, Connor Wilkinson in the 120-pound division, and Daniel Huxtable at 126 pounds have good individual chances for SHS in the lower weights.

Matt Dillon hurt himself at the Kemmerer Invitational last weekend but will wrestle at 113 pounds.

In the 132-pound weight bracket is Tyler Clemetson.

J.J. Crichton is in the 160-pound division, and Alex Minge at 170 pounds for the upper weights for the 2-A Shoshoni Wranglers. .

"All of those guys have a good chance at winning the whole thing," Truempler said.

The tournament starts a busy month and half for the wrestlers in the 2-A division before the state tournament.

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