State Wrestling: Hardy wins historic 4th championship, Viewmont wins 5A title

Thursday , February 08, 2018 - 10:45 PM

OREM — Lane Frost was a professional bull rider in the 1980s, remembered as a world champion in 1987 and known for his signature two-hand crowd wave.

And when Box Elder senior and 145-pound wrestler Brock Hardy clinched his historic fourth individual state championship, he paid homage to Frost by doing the two-hand wave at the crowd.

The Bees’ senior pinned Timpanogos’s Holland Knudsen in the 5A 145-pound championship Thursday at Utah Valley University. He’s been chasing four state championships ever since he could see Jeff Newby’s name on the wall at Box Elder High.

Now he’s a four-time winner, the 20th wrestler in Utah history to do so.

“It still feels a little bit like a dream. I’m just grateful I’m here,” Hardy said.

Box Elder wrestling coach Mike Ripplinger retiring after 34 years

Hardy finished the year 46-0, easily winning all four of his matches the past two days at the state championship. Against Knudsen, he would take him down but wouldn’t always keep him down.

“I was just looking for a pin. The team needed one and a lot of times, if you take him down a couple times, you soften him up a bit, so that’s what I was looking to do,” he said.

Hardy was later named the most outstanding lower-weight wrestler in the 5A classification, but brought teammate and fellow senior Garrett Ricks (a three-time champ after Thursday) to the mat with him for a photo.

If the ending to a storied career couldn’t get sweeter for him, Hardy opened his LDS church mission call after the match and read it while surrounded by teammates, friends and family.

Next stop: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, for two years before the University of Nebraska wrestling team.

Viewmont romps to 5A team title

Viewmont’s 5A team title pursuit started and ended in a perfect way. The Vikings pipped Wasatch 310 to 248.5 for the team championship, ending a three-year run by the Wasps.

“We won a lot of close matches the past couple days and that makes such a big difference,” Vikings head coach Brandon Ripplinger said. “That showed that they had a ton of heart when they needed to. They really wanted it.”

Viewmont started the evening with a win by 106-pounder Parker Frasure, who capped a breakout sophomore season with a 6-0 decision win against Wasatch’s Preston Blotter and finished with an unblemished 33-0 record.

Heavyweight Andrew Bargeron bagged a late takedown to win the 285-pound championship, which was the final match of the day, and he became the first heavyweight state champ in school history.

They were joined by Collin Smith, who won the 5A 170-pound championship in one of the more dramatic victories Thursday. Smith got an escape to tie the score at 9-9 with a minute remaining, then scored a takedown with 12 seconds left in an 11-9 win.

The team championship was the Vikings’ eighth in school history (all since 2002) and first since 2010.

Leatherow a bright spot for Fremont

Twenty seconds showed on the clock. Fremont’s Kegan Leatherow trailed Pleasant Grove’s Oakley Ridge 5-3 in the 6A 120-pound final. 

Then he got a takedown with 12 seconds remaining to tie the match and send it to overtime, where he won 7-5 with another takedown.

“My body just went into overdrive and just took over, absolutely no thought, you just go in and do what you have to do,” he said.

Leatherow, who was named the most outstanding lower-weight wrestler in 6A, was the lone Silver Wolf to win a championship after the day began with a tough start for Fremont.

The Silver Wolves’ two 113-pound semifinal wrestlers — Mason Denton and Tayton Bennett — were disqualified from the tournament and forfeited the previous day’s wins, so they didn’t wrestle in Thursday’s semifinals.

The reasons for the withdrawals and forfeits, one of which happened shortly before one of the semifinal matches, were unclear.

Bartels caps Syracuse career in perfect way

There was nothing that could bring Syracuse wrestler Tucker Bartels down on Thursday. After striking with a late takedown in the 6A 195-pound championship match, Bartels jumped and yelled and celebrated in the tunnel underneath the stands.

When his parents walked into the tunnel from the stairwell, Bartels jumped into his father’s arms before hugging his mother and lifting her off the ground.

“My very first year wrestling was as a freshman (at Uintah High), coach pulled me up from the football field and said ‘You’re playing basketball? You’re wrestling,’ I can’t shoot to save my life, here I am, never would’ve imagined it would’ve came to this, dude,” a visibly excited Bartels said. “It’s surreal. I still can’t believe I’m a state champ.”

Bartels moved to Syracuse High his junior year, but he went into the state championship with an injured shoulder and lost in the semifinals.

This year he wanted to end his senior season with a first-place medal. Better late than never.

Takedowns and tussles

— Box Elder’s Garrett Ricks and Layton’s Terrell Barraclough became three-time state champions. Ricks, a senior, got a 12-2 win at 120 pounds while Barraclough scored a pin at 126 pounds. Barraclough is a junior and will be a favorite to win a fourth championship next year. His teammate, Tyson Humphreys, became a two-time champ after winning the 6A 138-pound title.

— Weber’s Brady Briskey repeated as heavyweight champion, scoring a pin in the first period of the championship match against Ian Filoso of American Fork. Briskey, who was named the most outstanding upper-weight wrestler in 6A, pinned all four of his foes in the state tournament this year, including three in the first period and two in the first minute of the match.

Area state champs

Parker Frasure (Viewmont, 5A 106 pounds), Garrett Ricks (Box Elder, 5A 120 pounds), Kegan Leatherow (Fremont, 6A 120 pounds), Terrell Barraclough (Layton, 6A 126 pounds), Tyson Humphreys (Layton, 6A 138 pounds), Brock Hardy (Box Elder, 5A 145 pounds), Collin Smith (Viewmont, 5A 170 pounds), Tucker Bartels (Syracuse, 6A 195 pounds), Andrew Bargeron (Viewmont, 5A 285 pounds), Brady Briskey (Weber, 6A 285 pounds).

Team scores

5A: Viewmont 310, Wasatch 248.5, Maple Mountain 181, Box Elder 175, Skyridge 126

6A: Pleasant Grove 283, Layton 202.5, Herriman 200, Bingham 166.5, Syracuse 159.5

You can reach prep sports reporter Patrick Carr at pcarr@standard.net. Follow him on Twitter at @patrickcarr_ or like him on Facebook at Facebook.com/patrickcarr17.

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