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DeShazer leads 12-man Greenchain contingent to state

by SCOTT SHINDLEDECKER
The Western News | February 6, 2024 7:00 AM

With a strong performance in the wrestlebacks, the Libby Loggers Greenchain will send 12 wrestlers to the Montana High School Association Class A Championships in Billings this weekend.

Libby’s lone wrestler in the finals last weekend at the Western Divisional in Hamilton was no surprise as undefeated senior Jace DeShazer (4-0) made short work of his opponents to win the 205-pound weight class. The two-time state champion spent 196 seconds on the mat before scoring first period falls in each match.

Stevensville’s Dakoda Harrison lasted the longest before DeShazer pinned him in 1:10. DeShazer decked Hamilton’s Noah Guisinger in 27 seconds in the finals.

Younger brother Tristen DeShazer (2-3), a freshman, will be joining him after placing eighth at 152 pounds.

Junior Sami Jocks (3-1) was third at 113 pounds, sophomore Bridger Bache (3-2) was fifth at 120, freshman Brayson Orr (1-3) was eighth at 120, senior Xavier Reatz (2-2) was fourth at 138, senior Marley Erickson (3-2) was fifth at 138, senior Zekiah Meyer (4-2) was fifth at 145, sophomore Gabe Kosters (2-3) was eighth at 145, junior Connor Benson (3-2) was seventh at 152, senior Joey Wise (3-2) was sixth at 160 and sophomore Ian Thom (3-2) was fifth at 170.

Erickson started strong with two pins, but lost a close, 6-4, decision in the semifinals to Frenchtown’s Jordan Warner and a 10-7 decision to Corvallis’ Ben White. But he finished strong with a pin of Ronan’s Jairyn Krause.

Jocks started by pinning Hamilton’s Colt Yocum before dropping a 13-9 decision to Frenchtown’s Corbin Long. Jocks decked Browning’s Preston Connelly, then decisioned Bigfork’s Lyrik Fainter, 9-3.

The Greenchain were fourth in the team standings with 156 points. Ronan had four champions and was first with 268 while edging Frenchtown, which had 262 while crowning one champ. Columbia Falls had three champs and was third with 204. Corvallis rounded out the top five with 130.

Bigfork, Browning, Whitefish and Dillon each had one champion.

Wrestling begins at 9:20 a.m. Friday. Quarterfinals begin at about 2 p.m. Saturday, semifinals begin at 9:30 a.m. and finals at 4 p.m.