PIN FALL — Blaine Berg in a quick 1:37 wins by a pin over Sta nley Kipp of Huntley Project at the Choteau Invitational. Photo for the I-O by Colleen Moritz
It was just plain nasty. But Conrad fans came out and braved the snow, wind and freezing temperatures to see the Cowboy wrestlers and nine other teams hit the mats.
The Conrad Mixer is annually the team home opener meet.
On hand were Arlee, Chinook, Browning, Cut Bank, Mission/Charlo, Shelby, Heart Butte, C-JI, and Thompson Falls.
The Conrad Mixer has become a really good warm-up for the Choteau Invitational held over the weekend.
With two mats, wrestlers are matched up and go at it almost non- stop. No team scores are kept.
In round one, 10 Cowboys saw action on the mats and the results went like this:
Randon Anderson of Cut Bank won by a fall over James DeBoo, 119, in 4:45. Also at 119, Morgan Koenig won by a pin in 3:35 over Owen Powell of Chinook.
At 125, Blaine Berg suffered a tough 2-1 loss to Jayce Berkram of Cut Bank and at 130, Dakota Suta fell in a 14-8 decision to Dan Dunlop of Arlee.
Tyler Richter, 135, stopped Isreal LaFrombois of Mission/Charlo with a big 8-1 decision. Brandon French, 140, lost a 6-3 decision to John Gunderson of Thompson Falls.
The home boys had three wrestlers in the 145 weight class. Garrett Moritz lost a close match by decision, 5-4 to Austin Rubel of Arlee. Tyler Schultz took down Jake Smith of Mission to win by a pin in 1:35 and Bryan Barker hardly worked up a sweat, dropping his man, Bridger Smith, by a fall in just :32.
Justin Ratzburg, one of the big boys, lost his match to Marshall Ray of Browning by a fall in 4:57.
In the second round the Cowboys had 10 wrestlers visit the mats and seven of them won their match.
Starting at the top end of the weights, Ratzburg blitzed Derrick Martinez of Cut Bank in :34 for a pin-win.
Barker lost, but Shultz and Moritz both won their matches by pins in times of 3:57 and 3:00 respectively.
French took his match by a technical fall, 14-5. At 135, Suta lost, and Richter defeated Geoff Qualls of Chinook in 1:16.
Berg, won his match in 1:37 over Own Powell of Chinook, Koenig stopped Rabe Whitford of Cut Bank with a 7-3 decision while DeBoo lost by a pin fall in 2:31.
It was Senior Night. Cowboy senior wrestlers Justin Ratzburg and his parents Ernie and Jayne and Bryan Barker and his parents Lynda and Dennis Barker were recognized before the Mixer.
Team manager, senior Moranda Brentson and her parents Randy and Erin were recognized as well.
Over the weekend, the team was in Choteau for their Invitational tournament. The home boys placed seventh out of 27 teams.
Koenig went 6-1 and placed third. Berg was 4-3 taking fourth place and Ratzburg was 5-3, getting a fourth place medal.
DeBoo went 2-4, Richter 2-2, Suta 3-4, French 2-3, Schultz 4-2, and Barker 4-3.
Coach Kevin Moritz commented, “This is the only tournament all year besides divisional and state that we get to wrestle just B/C schools. Our kids stepped it up. They wrestled really well all weekend.”
Moritz went on to add, “It is a great tournament to prepare us for divisionals and the state meet.”
The Cowboy Wrestler of the Week was Koenig who placed third at the Choteau tournament. Moritz said, “He came back after losing a close 3-1 match to get third . He was very solid and wrestled with a lot of intensity.”
Ratzburg was named to the Stepped It Up Award, Berg was named the Practice Wrestler of the Week and both Barker and Suta were named as JV Wrestlers of the Week for their determination and improvement.
This weekend Conrad will host their Duals Tournament. It is the last chance to see the home boys on the mats, their remaining tournaments are all on the road.