Tanager grapplers compete at Parker 12 team Invitational by Jim Prosser The Tanager wrestlers competed at Parker on Saturday, Jan. 26 in a 12 team invitational. The only VHS wrestler to achieve a 3-0 record at the meet was Ray O�Connor at HWT. The teams in the order of their placing were: Parker, Wagner, Stanley County, Sioux Valley, McCook Central, Tri-Valley, Worthington, MN, Marshall MN, Mitchell JV, Vermillion, Platte, and Lennox JV. Individual wrestlers were seeded based on a stated criteria involving head-to-head, common opponents, season record, and record against strong competition.
Scoring was according to the state format.
KEY: WBF � won by fall; LBF � lost by fall; MD � major decision
Preliminary individual matches: 103 � Kyle Hubert LBF 3:07; 189 � Taylor Birgen LBF 2:46; 215 � Brad Simons WBF over J. Uzzie (Platte) 2: Hwt � Ray O�Connor WBF over T. Johansen (Wagner) 1:04.
Second round results individual matches: 103 � Hubert lost 4-8; 112 � J.J. LaMie lost MD 4-11; 119 � Brett Nielsen LBF 0:17; 125 � Andy Hayner LBF 3:10; 189 � Birgen defeated T. Johnson (Stanley County) 7-2 ; 215 � Brad Simons LBF 5:42; Hwt � O�Connor defeated Tyler Rand (Parker) 9-3.
Third round results, individuals: 112 � LaMie WBF over Vliger (Mitchell) 2:14; 119 � Nielsen lost MD 12-4; 125 � Hayner lost 3-6.
Consolation rounds � 112 LaMie defeated Nick Lee (Parker) 11-7; 189 � Birgen lost MD 0-8; 215 � Simons LBF 4:28. 112 � Lamie lost 9-12.
Championship round: Hwt � O�Connor defeated A. Tuschen (McCook Central) 5-3.
The individual records of Vermillion wrestlers at the invitational are: Hubert 0-2, LaMie 2-2, Nielsen 0-2, Hayner 0-2, Birgen 0-2, Simons 1-2, O�Connor 3-0, first place.
�I was very surprised at the level of competition present at the Parker Tournament. There was an excellent showing of talent from a multitude of teams,� Vermillion wrestling coach Casey O�Connor said. �Our wrestlers performed well, but several fell short in the placing round. Our young wrestlers are showing improvements with every competition.�
O�Connor made these observations:
? Kyle Hubert wrestled very well on Saturday. He is learning with every match and gaining confidence in his abilities.
? J.J. LaMie wrestled with great intensity. His technical skills are also improving with every match.
? Brett Nielsen continues to gain valuable match experience by stepping up a weight class and wrestling to help the team. He continues to work hard day in and day out in the wrestling room.
? Andy Hayner continues to wrestle very smart on the mat by eliminating mistakes. He is gaining the skills needed to perform well in the regional tournament to get to the state tournament.
? Taylor Birgen is continuing to eliminate mistakes, which is enabling him to perform at a higher level on the match. He showed improvement on his feet and with his set ups and shots.
? Brad Simons is gaining confidence with his technical skills on his feet. This is very important if a wrestler in the 215-weight class wishes to be a contender this year. He is showing technique and confidence, which will put him in this group if we can continue to stay focused on the regional tournament.
? Ray O�Connor again had an outstanding performance. Ray has increased his record to 35-0 by competing in a weight class that contained the number one ranked wrestler in Class A and the number one, two and three in Class B.
Ray displayed the level he is at this weekend by defeating the number three ranked wrestler in the Bs 9-3, and the number two ranked wrestler in the Bs 5-3. The number one ranked wrestler in the Bs was defeated in the second round and placed third in the tournament.