Feb 23, 2012 - By Bruce Tippets Sports EditorRHS hopes to end a successful season at the state tournament Friday and Saturday at the Casper Events Center by winning an individual championship.
It hasn't happened in awhile. David Nichols celebrated the last state title for the Wolverines in the 2007 season in the 189-pound weight class.
The double-elimination state tournament opens Friday with the first-round, quarterfinals and the semifinals.
The second day is for the consolation matches and the finals.
"We are going to have some opportunities," said RHS coach Jay Galey. "The biggest thing is that we go in there focused but relaxed enough and free enough that we go out and wrestle. The dream for a wrestler is to win a state title."
The finals are 5 p.m. Saturday.
The state tournament features the top eight wrestlers in each weight class from the regional tournaments. The top four wrestlers from regionals received seeds, while the fifth through eight are drawn out of a hat.
Taking No. 1 seeds into the state tournament after regional titles for the Wolverines are Gavin Wilson (113 pounds), Ahren Wempen (126 pounds), Rudy Batista (152 pounds and TJ Galey (170 pounds).
"Somebody always gets upset at the state tournament," Galey said. "I really think that most of the time that happens because kids get to looking ahead. We talked to them about taking one match at a time."
Riverton's Jacob Flescher (195 pounds) and Dylan Lewis (182 pounds) have No. 2 seeds.
Lewis lost a 4-2 decision to Kelly Walsh's Conner Hendry in the regional finals.
"Dylan had every opportunity to win that match," Galey said. "Sometimes you have to experience those things in order to respond. That match will really help him going into the state tournament."
Riverton's Beau Batista (145 pounds), Trevor Allen (152) and Jasper Gurr (182) have No. 3 seeds. Tyler Allen (145) and Dawson Steeds (heavyweight) are No. 4 seeds.
The rest of Riverton's lineup for the state tournament is Joey Ladd (106 pounds), Joey Roseno (138), TJ Turner (138), Drew Leach (160), Milton Crawford (160), Jasper Gurr (182), Riley Reichert (195), Lane Savage (220), Casey Savage (220) and Ransom Barrett (heavyweight).
"Most of our guys have been to the state tournament several times," Galey said.
"For the first time in a long time, our experience will pay off."
Gillette enters the state tournmanet as the favorite to win its 10th straight title. Gillette captured the Class 4-A East regional tournament scoring 235 points. Cheyenne East finished second at 215.50 points, and Sheridan was third (183).
"I still think that it's Gillette's to lose," Galey said. "Gillette is going to get pushed."
Casper Natrona won the West regional title at 198 points. Evanston ended second (163.50) and RHS placed third (161.50).
Powell, Douglas, Lander Valley High School, Star Valley and Worland all should be in the hunt for a Class 3-A state wrestling team title.
LVHS wrestlers with No. 1 seeds are Ty Alexander (113 pounds), Brodie Schneider (220 pounds) and Jordan Hanson (heavyweight).
Andrew Von Rein (106 pounds), Derek Debolt (120), Dalton Marrow (138), Garrett Maser (145) and Jacob Miller (152) all have No. 2 seeds.
Joe Malek (160 ), Jason Hanson (182) and Dalton Crane (220) are No. 3 seeds. Heavyweight Kegan Wells is the No. 4 seed in his bracket.
Sterling Baker (182 pounds) and Cody Flynn (195 pounds) from Dubois are in good position with No. 2 seeds for the Class 2-A state tournament.
Shoshoni High School heavyweight wrestler Dalton Linnan has a No. 2 seed.
Jesse Hawk of Dubois is the No. 4 seed in the 170-pound weight class.
Chester Broadbent (113 pounds) and Tyler Clemetson (126) are seeded fourth for the Wranglers.
In the 138-pound weight class, Wind River's Marty Thoman is No. 4.
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