VERNAL – By Cari Doutre – February 11, 2021
Braxton Christensen and Cael Wilcox, seniors at Bear River High School, brought home individual titles after placing first in their weight divisions at the Utah High School Activities Association’s 4A Division B wrestling tournament last week.
This year’s tournament was held at Uintah High School in Vernal and is the last stop for Bear River High boys’ wrestling before they take on the 4A State Tournament Feb. 20, at the Sevier Valley Center in Richfield on the Snow College South campus.
More information on the 4A state championships can be found below.
The 4A Division B tournament covered two days of high school wrestling while COVID-19 guidelines and restrictions limited the number of spectators allowed at Uintah High School.
Christensen, wrestling in the 220-weight division, sailed throughout the tournament undefeated landing him a spot in the finals where he pinned his opponent, Gage Howard from Uintah High School. Going into the state tournament this year, Christensen holds onto a 24-6 overall record so far this season.
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Also joining Christensen on top of the podium this year was Wilcox – who dominated the 160-pound weight division this year. Wilcox narrowly defeated Dustin Rhoades from Uintah High School in the finals, 6-4, bringing his overall record this season to an impressive 26-2.
A total of 13 Bear River High wrestlers placed in the top five in their weight divisions at the tournament – enough for the Bears to take home second place in 4A Division B this year with 398 points. Uintah High School earned the first-place team title with 528 points and Region 12’s Ridgeline High School took third place with 312.5 points.
In second place this year in 4A Division B, senior Trenton Ward, a returning 4A state champion from 2020, lost to Jaren Marx from Pine View High School in the 113-weight pound division. Ward sustained an injury to his leg earlier in the season forcing him to sit out at several top tournaments throughout the year. His overall record stands at 10-2.
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At 126, senior Dilon Wright lost to his opponent from Uintah High School in the finals, 8-4, for second place. River Smith, a senior at Bear River High School, also took second place in the 4A Division B tournament in the 152-weight division after getting pinned by his Uintah High School opponent in the finals.
Senior Landon Cabral took second place at 170, losing a tight match to Austin Richens from Uintah High School, 6-4. Kaeson Burn, 182, lost in the finals to William Price from Uintah High School for second place in his division.
In third place at the Division B tournament includes sophomore Max Miller (106), defeating his opponent – and teammate, Waylan White, also a sophomore from Bear River. White finished in fourth place.
Taking fourth at the tournament was Kayden Ward (113), Dustin Douglas (138). Caleb Korth (126) took fifth place along with Gabe Dwaileebe (160), to round out the top five for Bear River.
Photos by Shelley Wilcox and Melanie Smith