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2A/1A State Wrestling Preview
New Plymouth looks like a strong favorite to repeat, with Joel Campbell and Kyle Rice leading the way
Published: 2/24/2022 8:23:05 AM
Al Fontes
Contributing Writer

ORDER GAME PHOTOS

For the past two years, our nation and the world has lived through challenging, yet concerning times due to the COVID pandemic. Despite the myriad of challenges the pandemic has brought upon our daily lives, the sport of wrestling has continued to press forward in the midst of this reality. At last year’s Idaho State Championships, the fan attendance was at an ultimate low, which was based solely on COVID protocol requirements (greatly changed the atmosphere in the Ford Arena). With facility capacity restrictions being lifted this year, I expect the atmosphere to be energetic and exciting, which will impact overall performance in the arena.

Based on the competition I have observed this year, I expect the 2022 Idaho State Championships being held this Friday and Saturday at the Holt Arena in Pocatello to be a barnburner event with several wrestlers defending or going for their third and fourth individual title. A large percentage of the traditional team powers in all four divisions return strong teams and are expected to be in the mix for the team title and a top five finish.

For the past few years, girls wrestling has been designated the fastest growing high school sport in the United States and based on my observation, the numbers in Idaho are beginning to increase on an upward trajectory. For the past several years, the girls division has conducted an open state tournament, but in 2022 the Idaho High School Activities Association (IHSAA) has officially sponsored the sport. Below is a summary of the top individuals and teams in the 2A/1A division, as well as the pre-tournament seeds (top 8 boys/top 2 girls), listing their respective state placings and All-American honors. 

2A/1A DIVISION

As of March of 2021, the small school division (2A/1A) enrollment size in the state of Idaho for high schools fielding wrestling programs ranged from 103 to 308 students. Considering the small enrollment numbers, the talent coming from this division is exceptional. The number of returning State Champions (8) and returning state placers (53) is on par with the other state divisions. The deepest weight groups with returning state placers are 120s (5), 145s (6), 152s (5), and 220s (5). The only weight group with no returning state placers is 98s. The top seed is freshman Tayven Kunz of Ririe followed by Gabe Muilenburg (Glenns Ferry, 9), and Jack Eddins of Grace. In fact, the top 8 seeds are incoming freshmen and I expect this weight group to be wide open. The leader at 106s is returning state finalist and All-American Tucker Bowen of Soda Springs. Other state placers include Cruz Estrada (North Fremont, 12) and Chase Morden of Wallace. The 113 pound weight group looks to be highly competitive with two returning State Champions and four returning placers. Seeded number 1 is 2x State Champion Hans Newby of Grace, followed by State Champion Jake Castagneto (Glenns Ferry, 10), and state placers Zach Mills (Malad, 11), and Martin Estrada (North Fremont, 12). Among the deeper weight groups, 120s fields six returning state placers. The top seed is returning State Champion Gage Vasquez of Firth. He will be challenged by returning state placers Austin Machen (Ririe, 11), Jared Ridlisbaker (North Gem, 12), Cooper Williams (Salmon, 11), and Jed Huren of West Side. Keep an eye on Price Thomas (Glenns Ferry, 10), Zack Vian (New Plymouth, 10), and Landon Tweedy of St. Maries.

The odds on favorite at 126s is returning State Champion and 2x finalist Caleb Shaw of New Plymouth. Challenging for a high medal include returning placers Brian Ferguson (Ririe, 12) and Hoak Corgatelli (Challis, 11). The 132 pound weight group has no returning State Champions, but fields four wrestlers with high state finishes. They include top seed Tegan Whitaker (Raft River, 12), followed by Hyrum Boone (Ririe, 11), Skyler Rodriguez (New Plymouth, 10), and Wyatt Flick of Wendell. Rated among the top wrestlers in the state at 138s (all divisions) is 3x State Champion and All-American Kyle Rice of New Plymouth. He will be difficult to beat with the greatest challenges coming from returning state placers Daring Cross (Clearwater Valley, 12), Hiatt Beck (Aberdeen, 10), and Drey Stoor (Soda Springs, 12).

The 145 pound weight group has the most returning state placers with six. Seeded number 1 is 2x state placer McCoy Richardson of Melba. Challenging for the top podium includes state placers Ruxton Tubbs (Malad, 11), Anthony Fabbi (Clearwater Valley, 11), Grant Svedin (Melba, 11), AV Marino (Declo, 12), and Avery Palmer of Potlatch. Seeded fourth, keep an eye on Teagan Cabrera of Wendell. At 152s, 2x state finalist Austin Nalder of Malad is the top seed, but will be challenged by 3x State Champion Joel Campbell of New Plymouth for the top spot. Other returning placers include Eli Prather (Potlatch, 11), Sam Philliips (Declo, 12), and Wyatt Cutler (Grace, 10). The favorite at 160s is 2x State Champion Trent Myers of New Plymouth. With Carter Hurtsman of Ririe being the only other returning placer at this weight, I expect it to be wide open for a spot on the medal stand.

Wyatt Castagneto, a returning finalist, is the leader at 170s. He will be challenged by returning state placers Izack McNeal of Potlatch and Teagan Hansen (West Jefferson, 12). Ranked among the top 182 pound wrestlers in the country is 3x State Champion and 3x All-American Derek Matthews of Declo. He is the overwhelming favorite in this weight group which fields no other returning state placers. The highest state performance at 195s is returning state finalist William Maddox of Malad. Other returning placers include number 2 seed Riley Barber (Firth, 12) and Kamren Wright of West Jefferson. The top 5 seeds at 220s are solid and will all challenge for the top spot on the podium. Seeded number 1 is returning state finalist Colter Bennett of Salmon, followed by state placers Isaac Finley (Wendell, 10) Kyle Sibert (St. Maries, 12), Adam Rouse (St. Maries, 12), and Ethan Southern of Raft River. Despite having four returning state placers, the 285 pound weight group is up for grabs. The top seed is returning state placer Gavin Harris of Ririe. Other state placers challenging for a high medal include Hunter Williams of New Plymouth and Tyler Martens of Salmon.

The odds on favorite to repeat in the state team race is returning champions New Plymouth. With 10 wrestlers seeded and 6 returning placers, they will be tough to beat. Challenging for a spot in the top 5 is Ririe, Declo, Clearwater Valley, and Malad. Other teams to watch include North Fremont, Grace, Glenns Ferry, and Firth.


TOP 2A/1A TEAMS

New Plymouth (10 seeds/Returns 6 state placers)
Ririe (8 seeds/Returns 5 state placers)
Declo (5 seeds/Returns 3 state placers)
Clearwater Valley (7 seeds/Returns 3 state placers)
Malad (6 seeds/Returns 4 state placers)

 Other teams to watch:
North Fremont (6 seeds/Returns 2 state placers)
Grace (5 seeds/Returns 2 state placers)
Glenns Ferry (5 seeds/Returns 2 state placers)
Firth (5 seeds/Returns 2 state placers)

2A/1A DIVISION SEEDS (TOP 8)

98

  1. Tayven Kunz (Ririe, 9)
  2. Gabe Muilenburg (Glenns Ferry, 9)
  3. Jack Eddins (Grace, 9)
  4. Finnley Olson (Nampa Christian, 9)
  5. Becket Bowen (Grandeville, 9)
  6. Gavin Peterson (West Side, 9)
  7. Justin Patino (North Fremont, 9)
  8. Dawson Beard (Bear Lake, 9)

106

  1. Tucker Bowen (Soda Springs, 10), 2nd State, All-American
  2. Wallace Durfee (Declo, 9)
  3. Cruz Estrada (North Fremont, 12), 3rd State
  4. Chase Morden (Wallace, 10), 6th State (98)
  5. Steller Tew (West Side, 9)
  6. Carson Hill (North Fremont, 9)
  7. Zander Yearsley (Ririe, 9)
  8. Trevor Mills (Malad, 11)

113

  1. Hans Newby (Grace, 11), 2x State Champion
  2. Jake Castagneto (Glenns Ferry, 10), State Champion (98)
  3. Zach Mills (Malad, 11), 5th, 4th State
  4. Martin Estrada (North Fremont, 12), 4th State (98)
  5. Eston Beck (Aberdeen, 9)
  6. Carter Brittain (Firth, 9)
  7. Brylee Ganske (Salmon, 9)
  8. Skyler Brown (Soda Springs, 11)

120

  1. Gage Vasquez (Firth, 11), State Champion ’20 (113)
  2. Austin Machen (Ririe, 11), 4th, 3rd State (98)
  3. Jared Ridlisbaker (North Gem, 12), 6th, 3rd, 2nd State (106)
  4. Price Thomas (Glenns Ferry, 10)
  5. Zack Vian (New Plymouth, 10)
  6. Landon Tweedy (St. Maries, 9)
  7. Cooper Williams (Salmon, 11), 4th State (106)
  8. Jed Hurren (West Side, 11), 5th State (106)

126

  1. Caleb Shaw (New Plymouth, 11), 2nd, State Champion (113)
  2. Keyan Boller (Clearwater Valley, 11), 6th State ’20 (98)
  3. Mossy Waite (New Plymouth, 11)
  4. Seth Harris (Soda Springs, 12)
  5. Brian Ferguson (Ririe, 12), 6th State (120)
  6. Hoak Corgatelli (Challis, 11), 5th, 6th State
  7. Blake Chafin (Glenns Ferry, 10)
  8. James Meyer (Valley, 10)

132

  1. Tegan Whitaker (Raft River, 12), 5th, 3rd, 2nd State
  2. Hyrum Boone (Ririe, 11), 3rd, 4th State (126)
  3. Skyler Rodriguez (New Plymouth, 10), 3rd State (126)
  4. Jake Fabbi (Clearwater Valley, 9)
  5. Jacob Shaw (New Plymouth, 9)
  6. Jimmy Williams (Bear Lake, 11)
  7. Wyatt Flick (Wendell, 12), 6th, 5th State (113)
  8. Bronc Cordingley (North Fremont, 9)

138

  1. Kyle Rice (New Plymouth, 12), 3x State Champion (126)/All-American
  2. Daring Cross (Clearwater Valley, 12), 3rd State
  3. Hiatt Beck (Aberdeen, 10), 6th State (126)
  4. Cole Willie (Malad, 11)
  5. Drey Stoor (Soda Springs, 12), 6th State ’20 (126)
  6. Dennis Barnett (Ririe, 11)
  7. Dustin Bartausky (Firth, 12)
  8. Ryan Fransen (North Fremont, 10)

145

  1. McKoy Richardson (Melba, 11), 5th, 3rd State (132)
  2. Ruxton Tubbs (Malad, 11), 6th State (152)
  3. Teagan Cabrera (Wendell, 12)
  4. Anthony Fabbi (Clearwater Valley, 11), 6th State ‘20
  5. Grant Svedin (Melba, 11), 6th, 5th State (126)
  6. AV Marino (Declo, 12), 6th, 2nd State (138)
  7. Matix Jacobson (Bear Lake, 11)
  8. Colton Ocain (Kamiah, 10)

Others to watch:
Avery Palmer (Potlatch, 11), 6th State (132)

152

  1. Austin Nalder (Malad, 12), 2nd, 2nd State (145)
  2. Joel Campbell (New Plymouth, 12), 3x State Champion
  3. Eli Prather (Potlatch, 11), 5th State
  4. Sam Phillips (Declo, 12), 5th State ’19 (145)
  5. Wyatt Cutler (Grace, 10), 5th State
  6. Corey Godwin (Orofino, 11)
  7. Aedan Baker (Challis, 11)
  8. Nathan Gerratt (Declo, 12)

160

  1. Trent Myers (New Plymouth, 12), 4th, 2x State Champion (152)
  2. Gabe Finley (Wendell, 9)
  3. Tyson Tucker (Potlatch, 12)
  4. Colten Gundersen (West Side, 10)
  5. Anthony Carter (Clearwater Valley, 11)
  6. Carter Hurtsman (Ririe, 11), 6th State
  7. TJ Fetters (Highland, 11)
  8. Dace Jones (Oakley, 12)

170

  1. Wyatt Castagneto (Glenns Ferry, 12), 5th, 2nd State (160)
  2. Izack McNeal (Potlatch, 12), 6th, 3rd State
  3. Teagan Hansen (West Jefferson, 12), 4th State (160)
  4. Gabriel Cox (New Plymouth, 9)
  5. Declan Harris (Ririe, 11)
  6. Evan Michaelson (Melba, 10)
  7. Peyton Oschsenbein (Bear Lake, 11)
  8. Xander Coelho (Wendell, 11)

182

  1. Derek Matthews (Declo, 12), 3x State Champion, 3x All-American
  2. Jason Buxton (West Jefferson, 11)
  3. Teysen Gunnell (No. Fremont, 10)
  4. Bass Myers (Clearwater Valley, 10)
  5. Trevor Mathews (Grace, 9)
  6. Tyler Fitte (Salmon, 12)
  7. Sean Larsen (Orofino, 11)
  8. Brenton Overall (Melba, 10)

195

  1. William Maddox (Malad, 12), 2nd State (182)
  2. Riley Barber (Firth, 12), 4th State (220)
  3. Abraham Orozco (Wendell, 10)
  4. Kamren Wright (West Jefferson, 12), 4th State (182)
  5. Trayton Jacobi (Marsing, 12)
  6. Trevor Rhoades (Melba, 10)
  7. Isaac Goodwin (Clearwater Valley, 11)
  8. Cristian Ortiz (Aberdeen, 11)

220

  1. Colter Bennett (Salmon, 12), 5th, 2nd State (195)
  2. Isaac Finley (Wendell, 10), 2nd State
  3. Kyle Sibert (St. Maries, 12), 4th, 6th State (195)
  4. Adam Rouse (St. Maries, 12), 6th State
  5. Ethan Southern (Raft River, 12), 5th State ’20 (195)
  6. Avery Robles (Challis, 12)
  7. Alec Richey (Challis, 12)
  8. Wylie Johnson (Grace, 10)

285

  1. Gavin Harris (Ririe, 12), 6th State (170)
  2. Hunter Williams (New Plymouth, 11), 6th, 3rd State
  3. John Smith (Wendell, 12)
  4. Nathan Willoughby (Garden Valley, 10)
  5. Landon Warren (St. Maries, 11)
  6. Ethan Perkins (Firth, 12)
  7. Aaron McDaniel (West Side, 10)
  8. Davin Jones (Raft River, 12), 2nd State

 Others to watch:
Tyler Martens (Salmon, 12), 4th State

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