Clay Collard against Carbon.
Nine wrestling matches in two days is enough to wear out anybody but for Emery High wrestlers Clay Collard and Caleb Jones they made the most of it as they each won eight of those matches to win their divisions.
Clay Collard, a sophomore at Emery that wrestles at 135 pounds, is the only returning competitor for Emery that placed in the state tournament last season. Clay, also a football lineman and linebacker for the Spartans, is also a golden gloves boxer. Clay never backs down from good competition; in fact it seems to make him stronger and more competitive. Collard pinned six of his opponents and decisioned two others. The one match he lost came against Juab in his second match of the tournament. He led 7-2 after two periods and had three near falls but lost by a point. Collard also has the best record on the team this season at 19-4.
Caleb Jones, a senior that wrestles at 285 pounds, has the second best season record at 18-5. Jones won seven matches by pins and one by a forfeit.
At the Manti tournament this year were Emery, North Sanpete, Juab, ALA, Panguitch, Monticello, Manti, South Sevier and Fremont. Emery defeated Gunnison and Panguitch.
At 103 pounds this season, Emery has two wrestlers fighting it out each week for a starting job. This week it was Dallin Wilson that won out and Dallin went 7-2 at the tournament. Wilson had seven pins over the two day in route to a 7-2 record. Wilson has a season record of 15-5. Also doing well in the weight class is Spencer Fehlberg. Fehlberg is undefeated this season with an 8-0 varsity record and 2-0 JV record.
Drew Bohn, at 215 pounds, went 6-3 at the tournament. Five of his six wins were by a pin of his opponent. Drew is a senior at Emery that started wrestling as a sophomore. Drew is finally coming around as a wrestler and works hard in practice every day and is quite coachable according to Coach Buck Taylor.
The Emery wrestling team is now down to 17 wrestlers. With 14 weight divisions, this does not make a good mix. Emery forfeits the 189-pound division each mat because they have no one on the team even close.
Here are the season records of the rest of the varsity wrestlers: Dillon Walls at 112 is 4-17, Tice Guymon at 119 is 4-19, Zac Walls at 125 is 14-9, Tim Larsen at 130 is 13-10, Hayden Hatch at 140 is 13-9, Keith Bird at 140 is 4-5, Chet Funk at 145 is 6-3, Jace Guymon at 145 is 9-4, Chris Sanchez at 152 is 11-9, Cort Jensen at 152 is 1-1, Jake Gardner at 160 is 14-9 and Nathan Mecham at 171 is 7-7.
Wrestling, like most sports, would benefit immensely if the wrestlers competed for the high school for all four years of high school age. It seems that, according to Coach Taylor, "we are always a little behind those wrestlers that are 4-year starters at the other schools."