Cedar Valley girls, Timpanogos boys shine at Wrestling Against Cancer Duals
The 2023-2024 wrestling season kicked off with a bang as Provo hosted the 13th Annual Wrestling Against Cancer Duals. Provo High held 17 dual meets over two days, while American Fork hosted Farmington.
Girls wrestling: The top three teams from last year’s 5A race competed in the event in Uintah, Cedar Valley and Springville. Though Uintah is dropping down to 4A, the Utes are still a formidable program. But when the dust settled, Cedar Valley went 2-0 beating both Uintah and Springville.
It was fun, it was exciting, it was what we live for,” said Cedar Valley head coach Eric Gonzales. “It’s always nice to get in a nice pre-season competition like this and see where you are at and all that good stuff.”
Gonzalez was also complimentary of the event and the cause it represents, which was helping to raise funds to help Mindy Spencer, wife of former American Fork head wrestling coach Eric Spencer, as she battles breast cancer.
“We just appreciate Provo running this and obviously this is for an amazing cause,” added Gonzalez.
Cedar Valley first took on Uintah and the 2023 5A state champs vaulted out to a 36-6 lead before the Aviators stormed back winning the last seven bouts by pin or forfeit.
Then in its second dual against Springville, Cedar Valley defeated Springville, 48-30.
Nevi Brady (105), AnnaLee Wright (140), Rhya Balmforth (145), Alison Meyer (155), Madison Mayes (170), and Rylyn Denney (235) won both their bouts by pin.
In a battle of returning state placers, Mayes, who placed fifth in state last year, did pin Springville’s returning finalist Hayley Harris in the first round.
The Red Devils had to compete without 3-time state champion Hotaia Valeti who is still going through the weight certification process.
Springville and Uintah wrestled to a 36-36 tie with Uintah winning by tiebreaker. Laura Weakley (135) won both of her bouts on Wednesday for the Red Devils.
Mountain View went 1-1 in its dual meets defeating Layton 57-12 but losing to Canyon View 64-12. In a battle at 120 pounds that featured returning 3A state champion Julia Kay of Canyon View and 5A returning finalist Makenzi McCloy of Mountain View. Kay won by major decision, 11-0.
Other results had West defeating Delta by criteria after both teams tied 30-30. Canyon View won its second dual crushing North Sanpete 60-12, but the Hawks did defeat Delta 42-18. Meanwhile, an independent team made up of wrestlers from several schools beat West 36-24 as Provo’s Lacy Greer (110) and Ella Reynolds (135) picked up wins, while their teammate Hew-Lin Talia won both of her matches on the day by pin.
It should be noted Uintah’s freshman Sadie Rhodes (110) made a huge splash in her high school debut defeating Springville’s Emeri Mortimer and Cedar Valley’s Stephanie Schmolke in very exciting bouts. Mortimer is a 2-time runner-up while Schmolke placed third in the 5A state meet last season.
Boys wrestling: Timpanogos had a big night going 2-0 on Tuesday, while Layton showed that they are the big favorites to repeat as 6A champions stomping their competition on Tuesday.
Timpanogos first squared off with Cedar Valley downing the Aviators 58-24. Then in their second dual, the Timberwolves smashed Springville, 54-27.
Timpanogos showed off its depth by splitting up its squad for its duals.
Simon Boyer (113) and Dallin Bowman (235) competed twice and won both of their matches for the Timberwolves. In a battle of two returning state qualifiers who were just one match away from placing, Stratton Lewis (150) of Timpanogos defeated Springville’s Drake Fedler by pin in the second round.
“I am really proud of the efforts our boys gave in their matches”, said Timpanogos head coach Alex Nicholes. “They work extremely hard in the wrestling room and just an overall great group of kids.”
Cedar Valley did bounce back to defeat Provo 57-24. Uriel Castillo (120) and Chase Webb (150) had good nights for the Aviators winning both of their bouts by pin.
Provo did defeat West 42-36 and Christian Beesley (132), Axel Greer (157) and Heber White (190) were double winners by pin on the night.
Mountain View split its matches running into the Layton buzzsaw in its opening dual, losing 56-12.
The dual featured a bout between Layton’s returning 2-time state champion Geronimo Rivera and Mountain View’s 2-time state placer Glade Harman at 132 pounds with Rivera scoring a 13-4 major decision victory.
Mountain View did defeat Skyridge in its second dual 54-22. Freshman Hyrum Stafford made a statement for the Bruins winning both of his bouts on the night by pin.
In its opening dual of the night, Skyridge dominated West 69-9. Zayne Clark (126) and Chandler Curtis (175) picked up two wins by pin in the event for the Falcons.
Layton also wrestled Springville and dominated the Red Devils but Jason Lee (165) and Lisiate Valeti (175) did win twice on the night by pin for Springvcille.
At American Fork where the Spencer family was recognized, Farmington downed the home team 49-27.
Tege Kelley (150) did look strong for the Cavemen as the returning state champion pinned Farmington’s Hayes Smith. The Phoenix did get a big win at 132 pounds when its returning state placer Hudson Palmer pinned American Fork returning state champion Hanks Jacobsen in the first round. Hudson Bauerle (106), Tyler Garrett (132), Micah Murdoch (144) and Thomas Barthomolew (157) also picked up victories for the Cavemen.