Bearcat wrestlers earn runner-up GNAC finish
     2013-02-07      By Terry Gaston    sports@geringcitizen.com
Photo by Sheila Weber/for the Citizen - Scottsbluff Bearcat sophomore Keegan Hessler brings home the 113 title by scoring 5-4 overtime decision win over previously unbeated Isaac Stansbury of Kearney at the Greater Nebraska Athletic Conference Championships in Scottsbluff on Saturday.Bearcat wrestlers earn runner-up GNAC finish 
SCOTTSBLUFF — Scottsbluff wrestling coach James Miller watched his Bearcats take advantage of being the host team for the Greater Nebraska Athletic Conference Championships on Saturday, with the Bearcats scoring four individual champs and three runners-up on their way to scoring a second-place team finish.

Scottsbluff thus compiled 199 team points, finishing second behind Class A power Kearney’s winning score of 212.5 points. Norfolk was a distant third with 155 points.

“It was a great day. We had a lot of guys who wrestled really well, and it was great for us to see a couple individual match-ups that were good,” Miller said.
Scottsbluff’s champions included Keegan Hessler at 113 pounds, Joseph Flores-Ybarra at 120, Colton Adams at 132, and Sabian Harsh at 145.

Runner-up finishes belonged to Cruz Delacruz at 106, Tristan Donelson at 152, and Andrew Aratani at 285.
“Cruz had the kid from Hastings in the finals who was undefeated and he wrestled him in a great match,” Miller said of Delacruz, who ended up losing by pin to Hastings’ Nolan Laux.

Adams won his title with an 11-3 major decision over Austin Marshall of Kearney.
“Colton came out and got some good takedowns, was working on some speed a little bit, working off the bottom and working off the top, so that was good to see,” Miller said.

Hessler scored a 5-4 overtime decision victory over previously unbeaten Isaac Stansbury of Kearney.
Flores-Ybarra won a 3-1 decision over Kearney’s Scott Bauer, and Harsh won his final by a 10-4 decision over Parker Ridgeway of Columbus.

Donelson was pinned by Kearney’s Kalen Mazankowski in the 152 final, while Aratani lost a tough 3-2 decision to Christian Hernandez-DeHorta of Norfolk.
“I’m just proud of the guys, of the way they wrestled and the way they handled themselves,” Miller said. “We’re just looking forward to continuing to compete.”

The Bearcats look to turn the strong outing into success Friday and Saturday in the District B-4 meet at Sidney.
“Anything can happen in districts,” Miller said. “There are couple of weight classes we’re nervous about and couple we’re confident about. at the end of the day, the kids have to wrestle all day Friday and all day Saturday.

“The guys are headed in the right direction. We still have a week of practice, which is great, because we still have some things we need to work on. There’s still a little bit of time, so we’ll try to take advantage of it.”

Bulldogs turn back Red Raiders
The Gering Bulldogs completed their home schedule Friday night with a 36-24 win over Sidney at the Gering High School gymnasium.
Damian Hort helped get the Bulldogs going with a 9-6 win over Sidney’s Michael Muggli at 132 pounds.

Quentin Timblin notched a second-period pin at 145 to extend the Gering lead to 27-12.
Sidney scored two 6-point wins before Gering junior Elijah Timblin held on to beat Sidney’s Kane Taylor 4-3 at 170 pounds to keep the Bulldogs ahead 30-24 with one match remaining.

Blake Rains completed Gering’s victory with second-period pin over Sidney’s Brandon Luif in the final match at 182.
The Bulldogs competed in the Southeast Duals at Yoder, Wyo., as did several other teams including Banner County, Bayard, Mitchell and Morrill. However, complete results were not available.

Districts Friday, Saturday
Gering and Scottsbluff make the trip to Sidney for their Class B-4 district tournament at the Cabela’s Athletic Facility, while Mitchell faces a trip of about 300 miles to south of Oxford for District C-4 action at Southern Valley High School.

Class D teams Bayard, Banner County, Minatare and Morrill all travel to Sutherland for the District D-4 meet.
This year’s district tournaments serve a dual purpose for the first time. Not only will individual wrestlers be looking to qualify for the state championships at Omaha next week, but teams will look to earn berths in the first State Dual Championships, set for Feb. 23 at the University of Nebraska Kearney Health and Fitness Center.

Each Dual Championship bracket will consist of eight teams: the four district champions plus the top four wild-card teams that will qualify based on district team points, district participants and state qualifiers.

“There are a couple things that we’re pretty excited about and we’re definitely trying to make the state dual tournament,” Scottsbluff’s Miller said. “And by winning the district championship that guarantees us a seed there. I think that would be our easiest way in, other than having to go off the wild-card points. We’ll see how it goes.”

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