District champions are being crowned, and tournaments are filling the weekends so far in January. And the good news for Oklahoma teams: Blair Academy will have to stay in New Jersey to compete for a state championship.
What does that have to do with Oklahoma? Well, the Buccaneers stormed into the Sooner State and completely dominated the Geary Invitational in early January, winning the team title with 246 points and nine first-place finishers.
Tuttle was second with 132.5 points and Luke Surber (138 pounds) and Dustin Plott (160) snagging individual titles.
Other than that, Broken Arrow’s Gavin Potter (195) and Choctaw’s Caulin Poole (285) were the only other Oklahoma wrestlers to finish first in Geary.
And just to bring you up to speed, here’s what else has happened as January comes to a close…
Dual state tickets claimed
Top-ranked Choctaw motored to the District 6A-1 crown, and the Yellowjackets will be joined by…
Edmond North (6A-2), Deer Creek (6A-3), Mustang (6A-4), Broken Arrow (6A-5), Sand Springs (6A-6), Ponca City (6A-7) and Owasso (6A-8). Ponca City beat Jenks 36-33 to quality for a trip to dual state.
In 5A, No. 4 Altus nabbed the 5A-1 title, and the Bulldogs will be in a field with…
Lawton MacArthur (5A-2), Piedmont (5A-3), Duncan (5A-4), Collinsville (5A-5), Pryor (5A-6), Skiatook (5A-7) and Glenpool (5A-8). Duncan knocked off Carl Albert (34-27) and El Reno (34-33) to land the 5A-4 title.
No surprise that 4A is headlined by No. 1 Tuttle. The Tigers, after their ninth consecutive dual state crown, will contend with these other 4A dual state qualifiers…
Newcastle (4A-1), Elgin (4A-3), Blanchard (4A-4) Vinita (4A-5) and Wagoner (4A-6), Catoosa (4A-7) and Mannford (4A-8).
As for the 3A field, it’s set and ready to go. Perry will be chasing its 10th straight dual state gold, and the Maroons will tangle with…
Kingfisher (3A-1), Marlow (3A-2), Blackwell (3A-4), Comanche (3A-5), Newkirk (3A-6), Salina (3A-7) and Checotah (3A-8).
The pairings for the 2018 edition of dual state will be released on Feb. 5.
The Bulldogs have ascended all the way to the No. 2 spot in Class 5A in both the dual and tournament polls.
Since losing a 42-27 dual to Vinita on Dec. 19, Skiatook has yet to lose much since. The Bulldogs captured the Larry Wilkey Invitational title at Jenks with 185.5 points, beating second-place Yukon by 25.5 points.
Josh Taylor (120) was Skiatook’s only champion at the Jenks tournament, but Dylon Carnagey (285) and Korbin McLaughlin (220) notched second-place finishes.
Building on that performance, Skiatook finished second at the Malcolm Wade Invitational in Carl Albert, and they nailed down the District 5A-7 crown, too.
For the cherry on top in January, Skiatook made sure to claim the championship in its own tournament. Taylor (120), Cougar Anderson (138), Blake Watkins (170) and McLaughlin (195) all won individual titles, and Hunter Hall (second at 152) and Carnagey (third at 285) both grabbed top-three finishes.
The team Skiatook fell short of at the Carl Albert tournament was Lawton MacArthur and its five first-place finishers. The Highlanders capped off the tournament with 236.5 points, a week after mustering only 49 points for a 10th-place showing at the Geary Invitational.
Nailing down individual titles for Lawton Mac at the Carl Albert tournament was Quinton Smith (132), Nick Mahan (152), Hunter Jump (160) and Montana Phillips (285). Both Mahan (13-3 major decision over Piedmont’s Fisher Johnson) and Jump (win by fall over El Reno’s Kord LaFoe) picked up bonus points in the finals.
Blanchard feeling bullish
It’s no secret that Tuttle is pretty good in Class 4A. But Blanchard has made a name for itself lately, too.
The Lions picked up a fourth-place finish at the Cushing tournament to start the month. They finished behind Allen (Texas), Perry and Collinsville.
Then Blanchard marched across the state, picked up dual victories over Catoosa and Cascia Hall and then motored through the field at the Port City Classic in Catoosa.
Braeden Williams (106), Zach Williams (120) and Ryan Bracken (285) each picked up individual first-place finishes, and Ian Plott (third at 126), Josh Parks (second at 138), Jaxon Stratton (second at 152), Hunter Harrison (third at 182) and Tanner Newton (third at 195) all either made the championship finals or won their consolation bracket.
Strong atop 3A
In Class 3A, Perry is still atop the rankings, but Vinita, Comanche and Sperry are stringing together strong seasons.
Vinita has gone unbeaten in dual action, and the Hornets finished seventh at the Cushing tournament.
Comanche, led by Cade Cook (170) and Dailen Presgrove (182), finished fifth at the Owasso dual tournament. Both Cook and Presgrove went 6-1 in their respective weight classes.
Mixed in among 5A and 6A teams, Sperry finished sixth at the Bobby Lyons Invitational in Sand Springs. Nate Thompson (285) finished in first place, and Bryce Carter (second at 160), A.J. McEntire (third at 195) and Tyler Thompson (second at 220) were all in the top three in their weight classes.