BILLINGS - The Harlem Wildcats and Chinook Suagrbeeters had high hopes when the 2013 Class B-C state wrestling tournament started on Friday morning. But by Saturday night, both teams were left to wonder what might have been. Harlem advanced three grapplers into Saturday's finals, but lost all three matches. The Wildcats wound up ninth overall with 84 points. Meanwhile, Chinook failed to win the Class C only trophy for the first time since the trophy started being give out. The Beeters scored 49.5 points, while Fort Benton took the title with 55 points.
Harlem had a strong showing this weekend, but it didn't end well as Seth Adams lost the 215-pound championship after being pinned by Owen DeBruckyer of Choteau. Minutes later, Shay Snider dropped a 6-2 decision to arch rival Kylan Berkram of Cut Bank at 112 pounds. Snider had just beaten Berkram in the Northern B-C championship last Saturday in Chester. And finally, Teague Jones was beaten by major decision by Forsyth's Matthew Weber in the 130-pound championship, leaving the Wildcats 0-3 in the finals. It wasn't the finish Harlem was looking for, but the Wildcats still had an outstanding tournament.
Chinook wound up finishing 12th overall in the B-C field, but Fort Benton edged past the Beeters Saturday morning. Chinook got fifth-place finishes from Robbie Klingaman at 189 pounds and Donovan Moon at 98 pounds. Moon was the only semifinalist for the Beeters, while Klingaman fought back after losing Friday in the quarterfinals.
Big Sandy and Chester/J-I tied for 29th place with 25 points and each placed one grappler. C/J-I's Shalon Norick rebounded from a loss in the semifinals to finish third, placing for the second straight season. Lane Martin got on the medal stand for Big Sandy, finishing fourth at 171 pounds. Martin also reached the semis beforte losing Saturday morning.
In an exciting finish, Choteau and Forsyth went down to the final 130-poound match. And though Choteau's JJ Werdal won at 130 pounds, he needed a pin or technical fall to lift the bulldogs to the state title. Instead, the Dogies repeated as state champions by a mere one point, 202 to 201. Colstrip finished a distant third with 127 points.
For complete local B-C coverage, see Monday's Havre Daily News.