Feb 25, 2014 - By Bruce Tippets, Sports EditorRiverton Wolverine wrestler Chris Holcomb put himself in a good spot for the state tournament, placing second in the 182-pound bracket at the Class 4-A West regional tournament in Casper.
Holcomb won two consecutive victories on pins to advance into the title match.
In the championship match, Conner Hendry from Casper Kelly Walsh won a 11-6 decision.
"Chris probably did what we expected him to do," Riverton coach Jay Galey said. "The Hendry kid is not a great matchup for Chris. They are both pretty long kids. Hendry is pretty good on his feet. Every time we have wrestled him Chris gets a little bit defensive, instead of attacking. Chris is not an easy guy to beat."
Holcomb is the No. 2 seed in his weight class for the state tournament.
"Chris should get through the first couple of rounds," Galey said. "When it comes to the semifinals, it will be who wants it the most."
In the regional tournament, the Wolverines placed sixth with 90 points. Green River dominated the field, scoring 250 points. Evanston came in second at 173 points.
The state tournament is Friday and Saturday at the Casper Events Center. The early rounds are Friday morning with the semifinals in the evening. The tournament concludes Saturday night with all the title matches.
Riverton placed four wrestlers in two weight classes at the regional tournament.
At 113 pounds, Joey Ladd was third for the Wolverines, and teammate Justyn Corbitt came in fourth. The two had to face each other, and Ladd won his match with Corbitt on a rule violation.
"The rule violation means that Ladd won the match, and he gets the advancement points because they are from the same schools," Galey said. "That is the only time you will ever see that."
Galey said Ladd has made it a habit of turning it on at regional time in the last three years.
"Joey has decided to get after it at the regional tournament," Galey said. "As a result, he does really well."
In the 170-pound division, Riverton's Reece Prosser was third, and teammate Bridger Amann came in fourth.
"Reece can beat anybody in that weight class," Galey said. "One thing about Reece is that he will show up for the state tournament. I would just love to see him go beat somebody that people don't expect him to beat."
Koa Rodriguez collected a third-place medal at 160 pounds. Rodriguez defeated Bryson Peal from Kelly Walsh 8-3.
"Koa had a great year as a freshman," Galey said. "Coaching-wise, he has upped our expectations a lot. I really felt like he should have won the regional tournament."
Tyler Allen came in fourth in the 152-pound bracket to round out the top placers at regionals.
Class 4-A West regional wrestling results Friday and Saturday in Casper
1. Green River, 250; 2. Evanston, 173; 3. Casper Kelly Walsh, 166.5; 4. Casper Natrona, 153; 5. Rock Springs, 108.5; 6. Riverton, 90.
Winners and Riverton placers
106 pounds -- 1. Danny Macy, Rock Springs.
113 -- 1. Cole Verner, Green River; 3. Joey Ladd, Riverton; 4. Justyn Corbitt, Riverton.
120 -- 1. Chad Collard, Rock Springs.
126 -- 1. Shandon Welsh, Green River.
132 -- 1. Ben Nathan, Green River.
138 -- 1. Tanner Galey, Kelly Walsh.
145 -- 1. Bruce Lester, Evanston.
152 -- 1. Batista Covolo, Evanston; 4. Tyler Allen, Riverton.
160 -- 1. Hunter Hanks, Green River; 3. Koa Rodriguez, Riverton.
170 -- 1. Shay McCurdy, Green River; 3. Reece Prosser, Riverton; 4. Bridger Amann, Riverton.
182 --1. Conner Hendry; 2. Chris Holcomb, Riverton.
195 -- 1. Bridger Berry, Casper Natrona.
220 -- 1 Jose Munoz, Kelly Walsh.
Heavyweight --1. Kaleb Clark, Kelly Walsh.
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