Prep wrestling: Big upset the talk of Day 1 of Divisionals

Liam Williams (in gray), shown in this file photo from Desert Storm Classic won his weight diviasion at the 3A State Tournament. | Photo by Kevin Luthy, St. George News

CEDAR CITY – Cedar City’s Daniel Jordan pulled off one of the biggest upsets of the Class 3A South Divisional wrestling tournament on Friday.

Jordan defeated Snow Canyon’s Desmond Wise, who entered the tournament as the top-ranked 285-pound wrestler in the classification, 6-4 in overtime to highlight the Redmen’s run toward next week’s state tournament.

Wise and Jordan battled to a 2-2 tie in regulation. Wise recorded an escape and Jordan picked up a penalty point for a 3-3 deadlock after one overtime. In the second overtime Jordan got an escape and a takedown while Wise picked up a penalty point.

“That was huge for a second-year wrestler,” said a beaming coach Luke Payne of Jordan’s victory which propelled him into the semifinals of the tournament. Those matches begin at 11 a.m. At Cedar City High School. The championship finals will begin at 4 p.m.

At stake are eight spots in each weight class at the state tournament at Utah Valley University.

Juab, out of Region 12, and Region 9’s Cedar City and Desert Hills will take the largest number of and highest-seeded contingent of qualifiers to the state meet.

Desert Hills, the region runner-up, qualified seven wrestlers for Saturday’s championship semifinals. Cedar City qualified eight and Juab, the top-ranked team in Class 3A, qualified 13.

“I’m greedy; I want them all,” Desert Hills coach Brian Pace said of his group who advanced. “We thought we’d get one more. Tomorrow they’ve got to show up and do more.”

There was plenty of quality action in both the championship quarterfinals and the consolation rounds. Desert Hills picked up three of its qualifiers in quick order as Kaden Ricks and Tanner Terry won at 145 pounds, and Liam Williams did so at 152.

Ricks and Cedar’s James Wilson deadlocked at 3-3 in regulation. Ricks eventually took a 7-4 decision in two overtimes, recording a reverse and takedown while Wilson had an escape.

“It was hard,” Ricks said. “I’ve been training all season. This definitely made it all worth it.”

Pine View’s Ben Worlton was another winner who echoed that sentiment. He defeated Treyson Abbott of Hurricane in a 138-pound match, which seemed to have a pattern of takedown, escape, repeat.

“(Winning) is the greatest feeling in the world,” Worlton said. “I love it when my matches are tough.”

Pine View’s Austin Peterson, wrestling in the championship quarterfinals at 160 pounds, suffered a possible neck injury in his match with Carbon’s Taylon Abeyta and was forced to default. He was taken from the arena on a gurney as medical personnel carefully assessed his injury before moving him.

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