HOWARD CITY — Lakeview’s wrestling team was able to take home a trophy.
The Wildcats were winners in the Division 3 district team wrestling tournament at Tri County High School Thursday night, beating Newaygo 46-28 in the first round and dropping the host Vikings 54-24 in the finals.
Tri County got to the finals with a 39-34 win over Central Montcalm.
Everything went according to Lakeview coach David Blaser’s plan, he said.
“They (Newaygo) had some tough individuals,” Blaser said. “We got key pins in upper weights. Upper weights have to come through in every dual. When we pin out that’s huge.”
The Vikings (5-25), meanwhile, had a little trouble with the Green Hornets (9-10) before putting the meet away with two matches to go.
“I didn’t know what to expect from them,” Tri County coach Corey Renner said. “We haven’t seen them all year. We’ve been banged up and we really haven’t had our full lineup in all year. I didn’t know what to expect. With the team we have nothing is taken for granted.”
Central coach Dan VanderVlucht said the early losses in the match was what hurt his team.
“The heavyweight (class) was a big win for them (Tri County), and so was 125,” VanderVlucht said. “It came down to that match and we came up short. We expected our kid to win that match and came up short.”
Then came the matchup between the Vikings and Wildcats. The two teams started by trading pins at 140 and 145 pounds, but Lakeview (27-8) lost only three matches the rest of the way, and two of those were voids.
The only contested match the Wildcats lost was at 215 pounds when Dominic Black was disqualified for too many locked-hands violations against Jason VanDyken.
“They (Lakeview) are just a good team,” Renner said. “We’ve got a lot of kids that are replacing other kids that were hurt and they are more experienced than us, a lot stronger than us.”
“Tri County came at us with a little bit different lineup than we saw before,” Blaser said. “Our guys had to be ready. We had some guys step up and do real well for us and on days like today, whoever can string two dual meets together will win it. We put two together today.”
The Wildcats got pins from Terry Geisen (145 pounds), Koty Burgess (171), Peter Betten (119) and Jax Gambat (130).
The team regional that Lakeview will be going to next Wednesday will be tough, and Blaser knows it.
“The regional according to most people will be the toughest in Division 3 in the state,” Blaser said. “We have Allendale right out of the gate. They’re tough. We have to be ready to wrestle. We match up well with them. Then hopefully when we get past that we run into Whitehall and they’re ranked No. 5 in the state. It’s going to be a battle. Whoever’s healthy and can wrestle, whoever puts the best lineup together is going to win it.”
Lakeview 54, Tri County 24
145–Terry Grieser (L) pinned Tony Smits, 2:52.
152–Mark Nagy (TC) pinned Garrett Cavendish, 2:57.
160–Jordan Betham (L) def. Brandon Skeel 17-2.
171–Koty Burgess (L) pinned Bryan Scott, 1:31.
189–Joe Main (L) won by forfeit.
215–Jason VanDyken (TC) def. Dominic Black by disqualification.
285–Gus Ward (L) def. Jeff Jelinski 23-4.
103–Tommy Gilbert (TC) won by forfeit.
112–Austin Davy (L) def. Tucker Martin 15-0.
119–Peter Betten (L) pinned Jesse Britton, 5:33.
125–Robbie Roberts (L) def. Willie Cook 11-3.
130–Jax Gambat (L) pinned Markus Bogardus, 5:19.
135–Andrew Hall (L) def. J.D. Armstrong 16-1.
140–Brandon Empie won by forfeit.