Bucks second, Coyotes third in Reed City Invitational

REED CITY — Holland West Ottawa proved to be too strong for its nearest wrestling competitors, Pine River and Reed City, in the 16-team Reed City Invitational on Saturday.

West Ottawa had three first places and four second places to score 238.50 points, finishing ahead of last year’s champs, Pine River with 179.

Reed City was third at 160.50, followed by Manton at 125, Farwell at 122.5, Central Montcalm at 109.00, Manistee at 98.50, Big Rapids in eighth at 93 and Gladwin at 83.

“We started a little bit slow,” Reed City coach Roger Steig said. “We were sixth place after round 1. The nice part about today is last weekend, we started out second in a 16-team tournament and fell to sixth. Today, this says something for our conditioning that’s finally coming around.”

“West Ottawa is a tough team,” Pine River coach Tim Jones said. “They have a good program going. It’s the first time we weren’t able to beat them. We’ll be chasing them next year.”

Pine River netted first places from Tony Moore at 119 and Josh Jackson at 215. Also placing for the Bucks were Nathan Park, second at 103; Jordan Stone, second at 112; Dustin Beebe, fourth at 125; Tucker Fansler, third at 130; Philip Ragatzki, third at 135; Brady Long, third at 140; Tyler McCurry, third at 189; and Chase Morrison second, at 285.

“For Tony Moore, it was a great day,” Jones said. “He looked sharp in the finals. He’s on the right path toward the end of the year. Josh Jackson had a tremendous day on the mat.”

Reed City notched first places from Matt McGahey at 125 and Devin Ward, who got his 100th career win in his first match of the day, at 171.

Also placing for the Coyotes were Jimmy Bywater, fifth at 103; Alex Brummel fifth at 135; Brett Walker fourth at 145; Nathan Fasbender fourth at 152; Troy Giese fifth at 160; and Dylan Chrispell fifth at 189.

“In the finals, I thought that Devin Ward and Matt McGahey wrestled maybe their best matches of the year,” Steig said. “It was nice to see them turn it up.”

Big Rapids had seven place finishers. DeSaun Griffin was second at 152, Brandon Hatchew was third at 103, Garrett Smart was fifth at 112, Aaron Repke was third at 119, Hunter Jacobs was fourth at 130, Nick Worden was fourth at 140 and Kam Robinson was fifth at 285.

“Guys like Garrett Smart and Kam Robinson who took fifth are starting to get used to being in the medal round, which is good,” Big Rapids coach Ben Kosmalski said.

Griffin’s loss in the finals was only his fourth setback of the season.

On Wednesday Reed City is at Lakeview and Pine River is home against Tri County and Gaylord. Reed City and Big Rapids both wrestle Saturday at Tri County in the Central State Activities Association Gold Division tournament

Reed City 61, Big Rapids 18

Reed City wrestling coach Roger Steig said he didn’t know what to expect in its dual meet against Big Rapids on Wednesday with several kids out of the lineup because of injuries and missing weight.

The end result turned out to be favorable, though, as the Coyotes defeated host Big Rapids.

“I’m happy with how tonight turned out,” Steig said. “Going in, we had three out with injuries and four guys that didn’t make weight, so I felt like we were vulnerable. But the guys just really stepped up and wrestled well.”

Seven Reed City wrestlers prevailed in their matches: Jimmy Bywater (112 pounds), Jacob Toles (125), Matthew McGahey (130), Alex Brummel (135), Taylor Cutler (145), Devin Ward (171) and Dylan Chrispell (189).

Steig said Bywater’s match was the most impressive.

“He was way behind in the match and just stayed in the fight and took the match at the end of the third period,” Steig said.

Pioneer sportswriter Ryan Zuke contributed to this report.