Top 5A/6A wrestling teams battle for state titles 45

American Fork's Rhett Miner looks off as Layton's Terrell Barraclough sustains a hold on him as they wrestle in the 126-pound weight class during the UHSAA 6A and 5A State Wrestling Championships on Thursday, Feb. 8, 2018, at the UCCU Center in Orem. Isaac Hale, Daily Herald

After Day 1 of 3A state wrestling tournament, American Leadership Academy (ALA) finds itself in fifth place 68 points just one point behind fourth place Morgan. Juab sits in first after day one with 100.5 points while Delta is in second with 89.5.

ALA, who came into the meet with trophy aspirations, was able to put three wrestlers into the semifinals. Lukus Carillo (106 pounds), Rhett Miner (126) and Quenton Mortimer (132) find themselves still battling for the gold as wrestling action begins Saturday at 10 a.m at the UCCU Event Center in Orem.

Mortimer’s younger sister Sage (106), seeking to join former Uintah wrestler Candace Workman as the second female multiple state place winner in state history, went 2-1 on the first day.

She’ll have to win her first match Saturday morning to place in the top six as she squares off with Morgan’s Waylen Pentz.

Carillo, who also wrestles at 106 pounds must begin his gold medal quest in the semifinals against Jess Christiansen of Emery.

Sage’s brother Quenton, looking for his second state title as a senior, will square off with Richfield’s Ryker Ogden. Meanwhile, Miner takes on Grantsville’s Thomas Coates in his semifinal bout.

Maeser Prep, in its first year of competitive wrestling, scored eight points on Day 1 and stands in 15th place out of 17 3A programs. Cody Wilson (120), Adam Cottle (152) and Seth Leavitt (285) all won one match Friday but were eliminated in the second round of consolation.

4A State Tournament

No real surprises in the 4A team race, at least at the top, as Payson and Uintah distanced themselves from the rest of the field after Day 1. The Lions lead with 134.5 points while Uintah pointed 123. Bear River sits in a distant third with 95.5 points.

In regards to other Utah County schools, Salem Hills (50) finds itself in seventh, Mountain View (48.5) eighth, Spanish Fork 13th with 35 points, Orem 16th with 19 points and Lehi in 23rd with four points in the 27-team 4A field.

Payson put nine wrestlers in the semifinals with Cole Jensen (113), Deegan Palmer (120), Wyatt Hone (126), Jorge Sanchez (132), Brock Loveless (145), Tyler Knapp (152), Tucker Naccarato (160), Tyson Carter (170), and McCoy Cook (220).

Uintah counters with eight grapplers in the semifinal rounds.

The two team contenders with have two head-to-head semifinal match-ups as Payson’s Wyatt Hone will square off with Randon Deets and Lion Brock Loveless battles Bridger Bennion.

Salem Hills has three wrestlers still with gold medal dreams with Chyler Zeeman (160), Heston Wood (170), and Merrell Morley (182). Wood will take on Payson’s Carter in his semifinal match.

Mountain View still has three wrestlers on the top side of the bracket as Jonathan Hyatt (152), Elijah Sifford (195) and David Herring (285) all went 2-0. Sifford, a sophomore, has one of the most interesting back stories of any competitor left in the semifinals since he also plays basketball for the Bruins. But the Bruin has a daunting task ahead of him as he meets Orem’s undefeated Cooper Legas, the returning state champion at this weight.

Spanish Fork has two semifinalists with Ben Boyack (195) and Sam Dawe (285) and nearly had a third as Layne Shepherd (120), nearly pulled off a huge quarterfinal upset, but fell short against Bear River’s Scott Robertson, 7-5.