Like a champ: Moffat County wrestler Daniel Caddy claims title at Tournament of Champions; 5 Bulldogs place |

Like a champ: Moffat County wrestler Daniel Caddy claims title at Tournament of Champions; 5 Bulldogs place

Moffat County High School's Daniel Caddy and MCHS coaches are ready for action at the Warrior Classic.
Andy Bockelman

It’s a new year with new goals for Moffat County High School wrestling, and plenty of spots on the podium in the latest event for the Bulldogs is an indicator bigger things are around the corner.

At 11th of 32 teams, MCHS placed five varsity athletes during the Tournament of Champions in Vernal, Utah, including senior Daniel Caddy, who went undefeated during the two-day, three-state event to win the 152-pound bracket.

Moffat County High School wrestlers gather with their honors following the Tournament of Champions in Vernal, Utah. From left, Dagan White, Kaden Hixson, Daniel Caddy, Caden Call and Anthony Duran placed in the top eight of their weight classes.
Courtesy Photo

On top of things

In his final bout Saturday evening, Caddy had three early escapes and a takedown before pinning Oakley Ridge of Pleasant Grove to take the title.

Though he primarily faced out-of-state opponents during the tourney, he had one Colorado foe at TOC.

Caddy — recently determined third in the state and second in the region in his weight class by On the Mat Rankings — experienced his only loss so far this season in a defeat by decision to Etter at December’s Warrior Classic. The two wound up being matched again in the third-place match, only for Caddy to get the win by forfeit with Etter nursing an injury.

The scenario was déjà vu for another reason; last year saw Caddy paired with then-senior Sackett Chesnik — also of Paonia — in the Warrior, with Caddy taking the bronze as a result, later meeting at TOC, where Chesnik won the rematch.

However, Friday’s match in Utah went to the MoCo kid this time, and Caddy held little back against Etter, earning two takedowns, a near-fall and a reversal in the 9-0 major decision to move on to the semifinals, where he felled Green River’s Jacob Weipert.

Third place is a charm

Freshman Kaden Hixson — who placed fifth in Warrior’s 106 weight class — was the only Bulldog to go 3-0 in the first half of TOC, with a pin of Delta’s Kyle Chaffin and earned a 7-4 decision over Pinedale’s Tristan Haley to get set up in the Friday quarterfinals.

Hixson was paired with Montrose’s Kamron Alegria, whom he had not faced this season, though the Indian defeated Hixson’s teammate Brody Wiser during the Tiger Duals.

A 9-4 decision against Alegria set up Hixson for the Saturday semis, where he lost by a 16-4 major to Green River’s Thomas Dalton.

Still, he bounced back in the subsequent rounds, earning a 7-4 win over Jacob Carson of Pleasant Grove and pinning Trevor Scicluna of Green River in the consolation finals to place third in his weight.

Fighting back

Wiser was also in the 106 quarterfinals, though back-to-back falls for the freshman Bulldog in earlier rounds put him up against Juab’s Kaden Ercanbrack, who pinned him at the 1:43 mark.

The fourth Moffat County grappler in the quarters was Pepper Rhyne at the 160 weight, who got there after an 18-2 technical fall and 7-2 decision.

Rhyne, a sophomore, grappled with Paonia senior Grey Neal, and though he picked up a near-fall and a reversal in the third period, he couldn’t catch up with the Eagle’s early lead as Neal won 7-4.

Wiser and Rhyne each finished the weekend early Saturday as Wiser was pinned by Pleasant Grove’s Carson and Rhyne fell 5-2 to Uintah’s Dustin Rhoades.

Ryan Duzik also struggled in the 132 weight, staying in the back bracket for Day 2 only to go 3-2 for the tourney, pinned Saturday by Delta’s Joshua Jackson.

Daniel Cruz (182) likewise called it a day early Saturday after being pinned by Pleasant Grove’s Ted Johnson to go 2-2.

Meanwhile, teammates Anthony Duran (120), Caden Call (113) and Dagan White (138) made it far enough in the consolation rounds to get placement, gaining sixth, seventh and eighth, respectively.

Duran went 4-3 with one pin and multiple decisions, Call was 3-2 overall with three pins — including a final fall against Duchesne’s Bowdey Larsen — and White 3-3 with one pin and two majors.

Saturday also included TOC’s Second Chance event for wrestlers knocked out in Friday’s action, with multiple MoCo grapplers gaining redemption after falling prey to the larger double-elimination tourney.

Blake Juergens (132), Coltyn Terry (145) and Michael Voloshin (170) each won their weights with three consecutive victories in the single-elimination event after taking two defeats Friday.

Dario Alexander (126) and Billy Lawton (182) each went 2-1 in Second Chance, both making it to the finals and finishing as runner-up.

After a trying night Friday in his first event back on the mat, Hunter Fredrickson (120) made it to the Second Chance semifinals, starting off with a 15-0 technical fall over Rock Springs’ Lorenzo Solano.

While the entry rules allowed multiple grapplers at each weight in the varsity rounds — resulting in Duran and Fredrickson facing off as well as Cruz and Lawton in a battle between teammates — a smaller bunch of Bulldogs were in the mix for the JV tourney.

It was a tough go for Sean Byers, 0-2 in the 145 class, while Alex Black (152) was 2-2 and made it to the JV championship semifinals before dual defeats knocked him out in the consolation semis.

An early loss set up a long road back for Trace Frederickson (126), though it amounted to a 5-2 weekend as he went all the way to consolation semis, complete with four falls.

With a high level of competition at TOC, MCHS head coach Tyler Seislove said athletes benefited from both the quantity and quality.

“Everyone wrestled hard and got a lot of matches,” he said.

With the next weekend off, MCHS will next host a Jan. 23 dual against Grand Valley.

Moffat County High School wrestling results from Tournament of Champions

Weight — Wrestler, tournament record; win details

106 — Kaden Hixson, 5-1; 2 pins, 3 decisions, 3rd place

106 — Brody Wiser, 2-2; 2 pins

113 — Caden Call, 3-2; 3 pins, 2 byes, 7th place 

120 — Anthony Duran, 4-3; 1 pin, 3 decisions, 1 bye, 6th place

120 — Hunter Fredrickson, 0-2; 1 bye

126 — Dario Alexander, 0-2; 1 bye

132 — Ryan Duzik, 3-2; 2 pins, 1 major decision

132 — Blake Juergens, 1-2; 1 pin, 1 bye

138 — Dagan White, 3-3; 1 pin, 2 MDs, 1 bye, 8th place

145 — Coltyn Terry, 0-2

152 — Daniel Caddy, 4-0; 3 pins, 1 MD, 1 bye, 1st place

160 — Pepper Rhyne, 2-2; 1 technical fall, 1 decision

170 — Michael Voloshin, 2-2; 2 pins

182 — Billy Lawton, 1-2; 1 pin, 1 bye

182 — Daniel Cruz, 2-2; 1 decision, 1 MD, 1 bye

Junior varsity

126 — Trace Frederickson, 5-2, 4 pins, 1 decision

145 — Sean Byers, 0-2 

152 — Alex Black, 2-2; 1 pin, 1 forfeit, 1 bye

Second Chance

120 — Hunter Fredrickson, 1-1; 1 TF

126 — Dario Alexander, 2-1; 1 pin, 1 forfeit, 2nd place

132 — Blake Juergens, 3-0; 2 pins, 1 decision, 1st place

145 — Coltyn Terry, 3-0; 2 pins, 1 decision, 1st place

170 — Michael Voloshin, 3-0; 1 pin, 1 decision, 1 forfeit, 1st place

182 — Billy Lawton, 1-2; 2 pins, 2nd place

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