The Blue Ponies finished second in divisionals and qualified 11 for the state meet in Billings
By Kim Staudinger
Going into the weekend's Central A Divisional Wrestling Tournament, convincing the Havre High wrestling team that Dillon could take the title would have been a difficult task.
Yet, taking the crown away from the Ponies was exactly what the Beavers did.
Despite having five individual champions, the Ponies lost to Dillon by 13 points. Havre came in second with 217 points to Dillon's 230. Anaconda came in a distant third with 167 points. Dillon also had five individual champions while Anaconda had one.
"I didn't think Dillon would wrestle that well," Havre head coach Scott Filius said. "They flat out wrestled the whole field well. They did a great job."
Still, Filius said he cannot be upset with how the weekend went.
"We had 11 kids in the top three," he said. "If you would have told me that going into the tournament, I would have been happy."
All 11 kids who placed in the top five for Havre will be making the trip to the state tournament this weekend in Billings.
Winning divisional titles for the Ponies were Jeff Hedges (105 pounds), brother Chad Hedges (130 pounds), K.P. Fisher (152 pounds), Garrett Hanson (171 pounds), and Mike Schnittgen (heavyweight). Havre also had one wrestler take second, Kevin Velk at 98 pounds. Velk forfeited his championship match due to soreness in his ribs, but will be able to wrestle at state, Filius said.
"All five guys that won it wrestled really well," Filius said.
Finding their way through the consolation bracket back to third-place finishes were Jake Szudera (135 pounds), Adam Jensen (140 pounds), and Chad Zuelke (145 pounds).
"We were in a position to win going into the finals," Filius said. "We thought Dillon would win two and we would win five" championship matches. Filius also said Dillon had three wrestlers who were seeded second or third going into the tournament who came out and beat kids ranked above them.
Szudera, who moved down to the 135 weight class for the divisional tournament, placed third, something Filius said was not necessarily unexpected.
"We knew staying up (at 140 pounds) would be easier in the division," he said. "And we knew at 135 it would be easier at state, but harder at divisionals."
Rounding out the placers for Havre were Drew Harlow in fifth at 125 pounds and Nick Johnson in fourth at 189 pounds. Scott Sheppard and Mike Sutherland finished sixth in their weight classes at 112 and 119 pounds, respecitvely.
With 11 wrestlers going to the state tournament, Filius said he likes his chances.
"The brackets look good for us," he said. "It looks like it will be a great state tournament."
The state tournament begins Friday at the Metra in Billings.
The following are the results from the Class A Divisional Wrestling Tournament in Livingston:
Butte Central 16.
98 Greg Smith (Anaconda) won by forfeit over Kevin Velk (Havre)
105 Jeff Hedges (Havre) won by pin in 1:47 over Dustin Brown (Butte Central)
112 Zane Nordahl (Dillon) won by major decision 21-9 over Mike Rutherford (Browning)
119 Brett Nordahl (Dillon) won by pin in 5:05 over Scott Galle (Anaconda)
125 Geoff White (Browning) won by pin in 5:45 over Travis Kelly (Dillon)
130 Chad Hedges (Havre) won by decision 14-6 over Jordan Nesbitt (Dillon)
135 Casey McDonald (Browning) won by decision 7-3 over Joe Casey (Anaconda)
140 Phil Rinaldi (Lewistown) won by pin in 3:19 over Collin Erb (Dillon)
145 Jeff Harrison (Dillon) won by pin in 1:08 over Nathan Lubbes (Anaconda)
152 K.P. Fisher (Havre) won by major decision 12-2 over James Irish (Lewistown)
160 Calvin Peterson (Dillon) won by decision 8-3 over Mike Burns (Browning)
171 Garret Hanson (Havre) won by decision 6-1 over Chris Scotten (Lewistown)
189 Dave McGinley (Dillon) won by decision 3-2 over Jake Kallestad (Belgrade)
HWT Mike Schnittgen (Havre) won by pin in 1:31 over Wes Wells (Browning)
Third and fourth places:
98 Jason French (Lewistown) won by pin in 55 seconds over Cody Burdick (Livingston)
105 Jeryd Richman (Anaconda) won by forfeit over Blain Huntley (Dillon)
112 Kevin Raty (Lewistown) won by pin in 5:42 over Lance Wilson (Livingston)
119 Zach Bremmer (Browning) won by decision 10-3 over Brett Garber (Lewistown)
125 Matt Dettori (Livingston) won by decision 9-8 over Jason Andreoli (Anaconda)
130 Jason Hannon (Browning) won by pin in 4:31 over Shane Thomas (Belgrade)
135 Jake Szudera (Havre) won by pin in 1:40 over Steven Holt (Dillon)
140 Adam Jensen (Havre) won pin in 4:11 over Calvin Racine (Browning)
145 Chad Zuelke (Havre) won by pin in 3:27 over Cyrus McDonald (Browning)
152 Collin Hilton (Dillon) won by pin in 2:27 over Dallas Hillman (Livingston)
160 Matt Gruber (Anaconda) won by pin in 2:20 over Tyler Dunning (Belgrade)
171 Jake Jesson (Livingston) won by pin in 1:31 over Jake Tikalsky (Dillon)
189 Matt Humphries (Lewistown) won by major decision 13-2 over Nick Johnson (Havre)
HWT Sheldon Gerhardt (Lewistown) won by pin in 2:31 over Russel Liss (Belgrade)
Fifth and sixth places:
105 Tyler Hoyt (Browning) won by pin in 44 seconds over Jim Klemann (Belgrade)
112 Kevin Fisher (Anaconda) won by decision 8-5 over Scott Sheppard (Havre)
119 Trevor Thomas (Belgrade) won by dec 13-11 over Mike Sutherland (Havre)
125 Drew Harlow (Havre) won by pin in 3:18 over Chase Musick (Lewistown)
130 Seth Blume (Anaconda) won by pin in 2:24 over Levi Scotson (Lewistown)
135 Rusty Ward (Belgrade) won by technical fall 15-0 over D.J. Simpson (Livingston)
140 J.D. Caddell (Anaconda) won by decision 4-1 over Jordan Stanhoppe (Belgrade)
145 Trey Lukas (Belgrade) won by forfeit
152 Tom Gates (Anaconda) won by pin in 47 seconds over Coltan Sheppard (Browning)
160 Grant Terry (Lewistown) won by decision 10-4 over Shawn Huravitch (Livingston)
171 Brian Novotny (Belgrade) won by pin in 2:30 over Ryan Runningcrane (Browning)
189 Kane Renner (Livingston) won by decision 4-2 over Ryan LaForge (Anaconda)
HWT Chris LaTray (Anaconda) won by pin in 2:54 over Kiel Kovash (Livingston)