Belgrade takes down HHS at Class A Duals
It was another good weekend for the Havre High wrestling program, but this time around the top-ranked Blue Ponies came up one dual short of their normal dominance. Friday and Saturday the Ponies were in Lewistown for the Class A Duals. While in Lewistown the Ponies went 4-1 against the competition, losing only in the championship dual to the new and improved Belgrade Panthers. "We wrestled well with a lot of confidence for four duals," Havre High head coach Scott Filius said. "But the one dual where we had an opponent stand up and punch us in the mouth, we weren't too excited about that. We had a good weekend, we are obviously disappointed we didn't perform better in the finals, but by in large the kids wrestled very well." Normally the schools in attendance would have the opportunity to get at least seven duals. But with the sudden snowstorm sweeping through the area the tournament was cut short, leaving time for only five Pony duals. On Friday the Ponies went 3-0. HHS defeated Glendive JV 75-12, Miles City 78-9 and Hamilton 72-0. And on Saturday the Ponies defeated No. 3 Glendive 57-24 before falling to No. 2 Belgrade 45-34 in the championship dual. "They (Belgrade) didn't do anything we didn't expect," Filius said. "They wrestled real well and we didn't match them, so they ended up winning." In the championship dual the Ponies won six of the fifteen matches while the Panthers ran away with nine. Dual Stadel (112) earned an 11-1 decision over Ethan Bristol while the rest of the Ponies' victories came by way of pin. Brett Normandy (125) pinned Seth Sewell in 3:25 and Kent Pattison (152) pinned Colter Devers in just 2:17. Mitch Schnittgen (HWT) earned a 1:51 pin over Clint Robinson. Tyson Gruber (140) has wrestled very well as of late, and his success continued this weekend as he went on to pin Austin Malarchick in 35 seconds "He (Gruber) is doing a tremendous job," Filius said. "I was pleased." Eli Hinebauch (145) also wrestled well. Hinebauch trailed defending state champion Tucker Taylor, but battled back. And 5:14 in the match it was Hinebauch coming away with fall. Gilbert Bara (105), Dillon Seely (130) and Kameron Pribyl lost in the championship dual by way of decision. Zack Smith (119), Riley Harwood (135), Casey Schaub (171) and Josh Salapich (215) were all pinned by Panther grapplers. HHS also gave wins by forfeit at 98 and 189 pounds. On the weekend Pattison, Stadel, Schnittgen, Gruber and Normandy all went undefeated, 5-0 in Class A Dual action. It was the second time the Ponies fell to the Panthers this season, but there is no reason to panic. HHS is sticking to this season game plan, and simply took the fact that they need to be better-conditioned from this weekend's loss. Normally the Ponies look strong in the third period, but this weekend that wasn't one of their strong suits. "It's never fun to get beat," Filius said. "But as far as changing anything we are doing, it doesn't mean that." HHS now only has two more scheduled events before the divisional and state tournaments. On Tuesday the Ponies will host Great Falls High at 6:30 and on Friday the Ponies will host Conrad at 6 p.m. Both duals will take place at the Havre High gymnasium.