Viking wrestlers come home with well-placed victories
The Petersburg Viking wrestlers traveled to Anchorage for the Anchorage Christian School tournament last weekend.
With seven Petersburg wrestlers traveling to the tournament, the team finished with an overall record of 17 wins and 16 losses. There were 43 teams competing and the Vikings placed 21st among those squads.
“There were well over 800 matches wrestled,” head coach Martin Massin said. “We spent over 27 hours in the gym waiting our turn and were able to watch some of the best wrestling in the state.”
D.J. Toyomura, who wrestles in the 98-pound weight class, finished in sixth place with an overall record of 3-3. Toyomura began competition wrestling the No. 1 seeded wrestler in his weight class and received his first loss of the tournament – but came back in the consolation rounds to get three wins.
132-pounder John Brooks also took sixth place, and came close to beating a number of the top-seeded wrestlers in his weight class.
Kris Thorsteinson received a black eye that hampered his remaining matches and did not place in the tournament.
Thorsteinson finished the tournament; just not in the way he wanted.
“The eye was very swollen and needed some ice so it wouldn’t split open,” Massin said. “It was very painful and an injury such as this will mess with your wrestling skills.”
Tyler Burke wrestled his first match of the season and received great experience finishing 0-2.
“The experience he received was good for him,” Massin said. “He will get better with his takedowns.”
Bret Martinsen finished with a 4-2 record and upset the No. 4 seeded wrestler – but then had to go against a very tough Bethel wrestler and received his first loss of the tournament.
Will Ware completed the tournament with a 4-2 record for the tournament as well, and came away with some great lessons in aggressiveness and takedowns.
“Will is learning not to stand up straight and stay in his stance,” Massin said. “I expect good things from him in the next few tournaments.”
Kaleb Simbahon had a better tournament that expected with a 2-2 finish.
“Kaleb had to wrestle the defending State champion,” Massin said. “And he did very well.”
Massin explained that this was the first tournament of this kind for the young Viking team and they did very well.
“We still have a long way to go to be in the finals,” Massin said. “But now most of them know what to expect from the other schools as in styles and the way they come out after you on the mat when the whistle blows.”
Massin added that his team will continue to work as the season progresses.
“We lost some close ones that we should have won,” he stated. “But that is why they call it wrestling and not winning. We are working harder to prevent those close losses in the future and make them wins.”