Pinedale Roundup | Lady Wrangler grapplers bag silver at Ron Thon

RIVERTON — Demonstrating guts and skill on the mats, the Pinedale High School Lady Wranglers continue to make a strong statement in girls’ wrestling by winning pre-state at Wyoming’s biggest meeting, the Ron Thon Memorial Tournament in Riverton on January 1, 2019 second place finished 27-28.

Six athletes made it to the finals of the girls’ tournament, with four making the finals and three returning home with Ron Thon Championship belts. The Lady Wranglers beat more than 30 teams from all classifications in Wyoming and secured second place with 148.5 points.

“It was very exciting to see the girls’ place with Ron Thon,” said head coach Kendall Horrocks. “These girls are wrestling so well this year and have a very good chance of winning a state title. It’s well within their reach, but it will take all 12 athletes up to the challenge to make it a reality. We will work hard towards this goal over the next three weeks. We are very proud of their achievements, both individually and as a team. They are an amazing addition to the wrestling program here at Pinedale High School.”

The Wrangler boys’ college wrestling team placed 16th out of 26 teams with 54 points. The boys’ squad continues to be plagued by injuries and illnesses, said coach Horrocks.

“Overall we had a lot of good matches and our wrestlers went out and fought,” he added. “We are proud of them.”

Junior Jake Hammer was the only member of the boys’ college squad to place with Ron Thon. Hammer took silver in the 132-pound class at the tournament.

In the quarterfinals, Hammer pinned Natrona County High School’s Jameson Siemens by 1 minute and 36 seconds. Hammer reached the semifinals, defeating Ashton Leegaard of Thunder Basin High School in Gillette in the fall in the second period.

In the final match, Hammer faced Rock Springs’ Broc Fletcher. Hammer battled Fletcher through three tight periods. Fletcher secured the win by a narrow 10-6 decision.

“Jake wrestled very well throughout the tournament and was very aggressive,” Horrocks said. “He wrestled a good match in the final.”

Ron Thon Girls Tournament

Freshman McKinzie Mortensen won the championship in the 100-pound weight class. She pinned Cheyenne Central’s Ellyse Rimmasch with 51 seconds remaining in the second period of the semifinal bout.

McKinzie Mortensen reached the game for first place, defeating Glenrock’s Lucy Ticknor by an 8–0 major decision.

Fellow rookie Kaylea Mortensen captured the championship in the 105-pound bracket. In the quarterfinals, she pinned Wind River’s Cora Remacle at 1:09.

Kaylea Mortensen advanced to the semifinals, defeating Star Valley’s Kenna Merritt by falling midway through the second period. The game for first place went haywire. Kaylea Mortensen pinned Wind River’s Molly Bornhoft seconds before the final buzzer sounded in the third period.

Junior Katyana Dexter snatched gold in the 235lb class. Dexter quickly finished off her opponent in the quarterfinals, pinning Evanston’s Aaliyah Martin 25 seconds into the game.

Dexter secured a quick win over Rocky Mountain’s Jordan Muth, pinning Muth at 1:30 in the first semifinal.

Dexter bested Katlin Barral of Thermopolis in the first-place match, defeating Barral by Fall by 52 seconds to win the championship.

In the 115-pound class, senior Rhonda Auradou took home silver. She pinned Riverton’s Tymberlee Stanley 44 seconds into the first leg of the quarterfinals.

In the semifinals, Auradou faced Chay Stephans from Thunder Basin High School in Gillette. Auradou beat her opponent in the third period with 28 seconds left.

Senior Maddox Gehlhausen placed fourth in the 110-pound classification. Sophomore Sarah Helm placed fourth in the 120-pound bracket. At 155 pounds, Senior Morgan Grossman captured sixth place.

Ron Thon Junior Uni

The Pinedale High School Junior Varsity Squad did well at Ron Thon, finishing 10th out of 38 teams with 89 points.

Freshman Landon Fornstrom won the championship in the 152-pound class. In the quarterfinals, he defeated Natrona County’s Aydan Fuller 4-2.

Fornstrom pinned Cheyenne East’s Bobby Matthews with 16 seconds remaining in the first leg of semifinal play.

In the battle for first place, Fornstrom defeated Lane Rabel of Buffalo by 1:46.

Newcomer Cale Dauwen secured bronze at 182 pounds. He beat Powell’s Denton Wainscott after 2 minutes in the game for third place.

“Landon and Cale did very well in a very big junior varsity tournament,” said Coach Horrocks.

The Lady Wranglers and Wranglers travel to compete in the Rawlins Duels on Saturday February 4th followed by the Rock Springs Tournament on Tuesday February 7th.

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