After a winning season last year, the Dixie State University wrestling team struggled to find results in its first tournament of the season.
The Storm headed to Grand Junction, Colo., for the Colorado Mesa Open. The duel was a wrestler’s results duel, where the teams earned individual rankings for the wrestlers.
The Storm attended this open tournament last year, with seven wrestlers participating and three placing.
This tournament contained Division I and Division II schools, including Colorado Mesa University, Grand Canyon University, Utah Valley University, Western State Colorado University, Colorado State University-Pueblo and Air Force Academy.
Eight men for the Storm went to the tournament this year. Dixie had two wins from the eight men who participated.
Of those men, 125-pounder Ty Mangum, 133-pounder Robby Miner, 149-pounder Justin Horsley, 174-pounder Ashton Hamilton, and heavyweight Kay Kay Smith all earned 0-2 rankings. And 157-pounder Aaron Camis and 197-pounder Jalen Weaver received 1-2 rankings for the Storm.
“It was a rough tournament, and there were a lot of big schools there,” assistant coach Wayne Briggs said. “This is only the first tournament of the year.”
Briggs said he is not disappointed because a lot of the men are learning what it’s like to wrestle on the collegiate level. He said most of the men on the team are freshmen.
“I feel like it was a good learning experience because of the high competition level,” said Justin Horsley, a freshman general education major from Bountiful. “We struggled as a team, and there is always room for improvement.”
The Storm are now preparing to tackle the Emery Riddle Mile High Tournament Nov. 23 in Prescott, Ariz.
They will have to work on their struggles in order to come out with a good score.
“We will take what we have experienced from this last tournament, work on it, and be better and ready for the next tournament,” Briggs said.
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