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Grueling weekend welcomes prep wrestlers after winter break

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RONAN – Mission Valley area prep wrestling teams from Ronan, Mission/Charlo and Polson returned to the mats from their winter holiday vacation this past weekend during the Western Montana Duals in Ronan.

The Polson Pirate wrestling team finished fourth out of 20 western Montana teams that competed during the two-day tournament that started on Friday with pool play and finished with championship bracket action on Saturday.

Finishing 3-1 during pool action, the Pirates defeated Whitefish 54-24, Corvallis 42-30, Big Sky 54-20 but fell 42-34 to Mission/Charlo in the last match of the evening.

On Saturday, the Pirates lost their opening match in the championship bracket to Frenchtown 38-33.  

Bouncing back from the loss, Polson went on to win their next two duals in the consolation brackets, slipping past Browning in a 36-36 tie breaker, then beating Mission/Charlo 41-36 before falling 48-27 in the third-place match to Columbia Falls.

“We competed well,” said Pirate head coach Matt Owen. “I was pleased with our performance.”  Tournament host Ronan Chiefs went 2-2 in pool action. The Chiefs defeated Superior 42-36 and Bigfork 40-12 but fell 57-15 to Columbia Falls and Hamilton 33-33 in a tie breaker. 

In the championship rounds, Ronan fell to Townsend 60-13, Libby 35-30 and Columbia Falls 45-21.

On Friday, the Mission/Charlo Bulldog wrestlers put up a solid dual tournament performance by defeating Big Sky 58-12, Whitefish 48-30 and Polson 42-34. The Bulldogs finished pool play with a 3-1 overall mark with their lone loss to Corvallis 41-28.

In the championship rounds, the Bulldogs won their opening match over Libby 45-24 then fell 42-35 to eventual dual champions Townsend and 41-36 to fourth place finishers Polson.

This weekend, both the Polson and Ronan squads head off to Missoula for the Rocky Mountain Classic, while Mission/Charlo and Arlee teams travel east to compete in the Choteau Classic.


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