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Stillwater turns in dominant performance in repeating as Class 6A Dual State wrestling champion

Elgin, Tuttle and Blackwell also claim team titles, with Tuttle also tying a state record
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By Mike Moguin | Photos and video by Michael Kinney

ENID - Coaches have said Stillwater has some outstanding wrestlers in the state.

The Pioneers showed why Saturday night as they captured their second Class 6A Dual State Championship with a 38-22 win against Edmond North at the Stride Bank Center in Enid.

It marked the second straight year Stillwater, who was ranked second in the final Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association poll, took home the dual state trophy and its third state title overall.

“It’s tremendously meaningful,” Stillwater coach Ethan Kyle said. “In a team, where it takes a really balanced effort, a lot of things have to go right and we’re really thankful that we did; mostly void of injury and we had a great season and won mostly when it counted.”

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Both teams advanced after winning semifinal duals earlier in the afternoon. Stillwater beat No. 3 Bixby, 44-15, and Edmond North was a 57-15 victor against fourth-ranked Broken Arrow.

The Huskies (14-1), who are ranked No. 1 by the OSSAA, won the first finals match at 285, via a 5-3 decision by Oscar Williams over Cam Johnson. Then the Pioneers (12-1) looked as if they had taken over with cruise control by scoring wins in the next five matches, moving in front, 21-3.

“We have eight state champions on our roster, I could go on and on,” Kyle said. “We have a bunch of guys that have focused on improving throughout the year and that’s how you get that high up in a career.

"You do it step-by-step and you avoid the backward steps, and we’ve done a good job of that.”

The last of those was a highlighted match at 132 pounds between a pair of returning state champions - Cael Hughes of Stillwater and Hunter Hollingsworth of Edmond North. Up 2-0 in the third period, Hughes increased his advantage to 3-0 when he escaped a single-leg takedown attempt from Hollingsworth.

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But Hollingsworth had success applying a takedown to Hughes immediately afterward and closed the gap to 3-2. Hughes then got another escape and another point, making it 4-2.

It would end at that score, giving Hughes the decision.

“Those guys have wrestled each other for at least the third time this season, maybe a fourth,” Kyle said. “They know each really other well. They wrestled a ton growing up.

"In a tough match, Cael gave that takedown up being overaggressive. He’s a real hammer and he has built himself into it for a real long, hard career of the highest level of training that you can find.”

Edmond North took the next two bouts. Joseph Jeter dominated the 138-pound match with a 14-2 major decision against Mitchell Borynack, and at 144, the sound of a slam on the mat as Layton Schneider put Jadah Heegonto on his back 18 seconds into the match.

It was 21-13, Stillwater, and it looked as if the Huskies were building momentum. But the Pioneers seized back command with wins by decision, fall and decision in the next three battles.

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That included a pin by LaDarion Lockett at 1:20 against Brayden Lucas and a 5-1 decision by Landyn Sommer against June Randall. Sommer almost pinned Randall with 14 seconds left, but Randall escaped and got a point, while Sommer was given two for the near-fall.

The team score was 33-13 at that point.

Speaking of falls with little time left, it did happen earlier in the dual when the Pioneers’ Beric Jordan, up 9-6, pinned Max McDaniel with six seconds left.

North got its last match victory at 175 as Talon McCollum picked up an 11-5 decision against Parker Brown. The Huskies later got six points on a forfeit at 215.

In the last match at 190, Stillwater's A.J. Heeg surged to an 8-0 lead before forcing a fall to Isaac Villalobos at the 1:21 mark. An unsportsmanlike conduct call from that match was deducted from Stillwater’s team points.

With the dual state now behind, it is now on to the individual regional and state tournaments.

“We need to get treatment, regroup, train for a couple of days, and gear up,” Kyle said. “We made our goals a long time ago and we've been working towards them. It’s just a matter of avoiding self-sabotage.”

Class 5A

Elgin 40, Coweta 27

The Owls won their first dual-state wrestling championship and celebrated by donning cowboy hats, pumping their chests with smiling faces while looking towards their fans.

Coweta won the first dual by a fall, then Elgin won the next two with consecutive falls by Brice Martin (106) and Hunter Jackson (113), and the Owls were up, 12-6.

The Tigers countered with another pair of pins and were up 18-12. But Elgin took the next five weights, including a major decision at 138 from Austin Elam, that put the Owls ahead for good.

Elam’s win made the team score 19-18, but it became 31-18, before Coweta took matches at 165 and 175 via a decision and a pin, respectively. Elgin countered with similar results in the same order and iced the dual.

Class 4A

Tuttle 53, Catoosa 13

Tuttle continued its mastery at dual state by winning its 20th state championship, matching Perry for most state titles, with a 40-point win against Catoosa in the team score.

Ten Tigers won matches in the dual - Jace Warren (285), Chance Fisher (106), Braden Potts (120), Tristan Grounds (126), J.J. Head (132), Beau Hickman (138), Jaxon Koeltzon (144), Shawn Rounsaville (150), Ethan Teague (157), and Tucker Waitman (165).

Class 3A

Blackwell 38, Marlow 32

The Maroons were thrilled and relieved as 215-pounder Kolby Looper won his match by means of a pin at 5:23 against the Outlaws’ Brock Smith, giving their team six points and the 3A dual state championship.

It was the second title in Blackwell history and it snapped Marlow’s two-year reign as dual state champions.

Other wins by Maroon wrestlers came from J.D. McCleary (285), Louden Wolfe (113), Kaiden Alley (126), Grant Rowe (150), Jason Osgood (175), and Kruz Goff (190).