October 13, 2011 |

Thomsen brothers lead grapplers

Haines wrestlers notched some impressive wins at last weekend’s tournament in Hoonah, including five wins each and no losses for brothers Jimmy and Kenny Thomsen.

"The brothers are undefeated and looking strong. That’s pretty neat," said coach Dennis Durr.

Hoonah, Mount Edgecumbe, Skagway, Pelican and Craig participated in the round-robin competition, though Edgecumbe brought less than half a team.

Eight Glacier Bear wrestlers participated, including junior Caullen Taylor, senior Blake Ward, junior Zach Rossman, sophomore Walker Blair, and freshmen Casey St. Clair and Josh Stearns.

Ward went 5-2 in the tournament, losing only to a wrestler from a higher weight class during the informal competition. "He looked pretty strong there," Durr said.

Taylor also looked good, racking a 4-2 record and twice beating a wrestler who topped him last season, Durr said.

Rossman, Blair and St. Clair all got wins under their belt, important milestones for the team rookies, Durr said. No team scoring was kept and competition was aimed at giving wrestlers maximum mat time.

Team scores will be kept at this weekend’s upcoming tournament in Wrangell, where teams will include the Wolves plus Petersburg, Sitka and Metlakatla. A strong showing there by team leader Jimmy Thomsen, a junior, could earn him a statewide ranking, Durr said. "We’ll wait and see what happens."

Sophomore Dalton Tuohy also will make the tournament, Durr said. "The tournament will definitely tell us where we’re at in the region."

Haines will host its only tournament of the season the following weekend, Oct. 21-22, with action starting after the volleyball game Friday. Durr said he’s hoping Glacier Bear fans will pack the bleachers. "We could see over 100 wrestlers, so we want people to show up. It’s exciting to watch, and it’s free."

The local tournament will continue all day Saturday, he said.