O’Connor wins third at state tournament;

O'Connor wins third at state tournament; by Jim Prosser Tanager wrestler Ray O'Connor earned third place in the heavyweight division of the State A Wrestling Tournament Feb. 23-24 in Rapid City.

O'Connor and Ben Parsons, wrestling at 130 lbs., were the only two Vermillion High School wrestlers to qualify.

Results from the state meet for the Tanagers were:

First round

130 lbs. � Jared Hinhofer (Sturgis) pinned Parsons 2:38; Hwt. � Cory Johnson (Aberdeen Central) pinned O'Connor 3:22.

First round wrestlebacks

130 lbs. � Travis Jewett (Cheyenne-Eagle Butte) pinned Parsons 1:18; Hwt. � O'Connor pinned Dave Rickenbach (Hot Springs) 3:59.

Second round wrestlebacks

Hwt. � O'Connor pinned Travis Auch (Mitchell) 0:59.

Third round wrestlebacks

Hwt. � O'Connor decisioned Keith Munro (Sioux Falls Lincoln) 7-2.

Fourth round wrestlebacks

Hwt. � O'Connor pinned Johnson (Aberdeen Central) 2:35.

Third place

Hwt. � O'Connor decisioned Ryan Kotzea (Milbank) 3-2.

"After an unexpected loss in the first round to Aberdeen's Cory Johnson, Ray put on an amazing run of victories, winning five matches in two days," said Travis Slaba, VHS wrestling coach. "Included in the run was a revenge pin of Johnson in the fourth round wrestlebacks. I couldn't be prouder of his comeback to place third in the tournament."

O'Connor finished the season with a 42-6 record. Parsons finished his season with a 13-28 record.

The Tanager wrestlers competed in the Region 2A tournament at Sioux Falls O'Gorman High School on Feb. 16-17.

O'Connor was the only VHS wrestler to make it to the championship finals, while Parsons placed fourth at 130 lbs. to qualify for state.

Key: WBF � won by fall; LBF � lost by fall; TF � technical fall; MD � major decision; WF � forfeit.

Individual results in the first round matches were: 105 � Kyle Hubert LBF 1:21 to Mike Lere (Brandon Valley); 112 � Andy Hayner lost 9-5 to Chris Reisdorfer (Sioux Falls Lincoln); 119 � Craig Powell LBF 3:15 to Aaron Graumann (Sioux Falls Roosevelt); 125 � Tyler Zimmerman LBF 0:31 by Brent Weidler (Sioux Falls Washington); 130 � Parsons WBF 0:39 over Tyler Carda (Brandon Valley); 140 � Josh Kyte WF; 171 � Kellen Cusick WBF 5:14 over Austin Parks (Sioux Falls Washington); 189 � Brad Simmons LBF 0:37 to Jake Jass (Brandon Valley); Hwt. � O'Connor WBF 1:10 over John Soukup (Sioux Falls O'Gorman).

First round semi-finals: 105 � Hubert LBF 1:25 to Paul Walery (Lennox); 112 � Hayner 5-2 dec. over Drew Anderson (Sioux Falls O'Gorman); 119 � Powell lost to Matt Stukel (Yankton); 125 � Zimmerman lost 13-2 to Adam Slowey (Yankton); 130 � Parsons LBF 2:22 to Phil Greenfield (Sioux Falls Lincoln); 140 � Kyte won 10-7 over Joe Gordon (N); 171 � Cusick lost MD to Andy Smit (Lennox); Simmons � WF; Hwt. � O'Connor won 3-1 over Justin Frick (Yankton).

Consolation results: 112 � Hayner LBF 4:26 to Jeramie Degen (Sioux Falls Roosevelt); 140 � Kyte lost 13-7 to Tyler Ohlenkamp (Sioux Falls Washington); 171 � Cusick lost 3-0 to Darren Terveen (Sioux Falls Roosevelt); 189 � Simmons LBF 2:23 to Cory Bellmer (Yankton).

Third place results: 130 � Parsons lost 10-0 to Carda (Brandon Valley) (fourth place qualifies for state).

Championship results: Hwt. � O'Connor won 4-1 over Munro (Sioux Falls Lincoln).

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