Wrestling: Hartmann highlights South Kitsap’s performance at Mat Classic

South Kitsap junior Connor Hartmann placed second at Mat Classic XXII on Saturday at the Tacoma Dome. Hartmann lost a 5-2 decision against Auburn’s Dylan Rutledge in the championship match. - Jim Robertson photo
South Kitsap junior Connor Hartmann placed second at Mat Classic XXII on Saturday at the Tacoma Dome. Hartmann lost a 5-2 decision against Auburn’s Dylan Rutledge in the championship match.
— image credit: Jim Robertson photo

Conner Hartmann began the season as a second-stringer in his weight class.

He ended it as second in the state.

Auburn’s Dylan Rutledge earned a 5-2 decision against Hartmann to win the Class 4A state championships at 171 pounds during Mat Classic XXII on Saturday at the Tacoma Dome.

“I am happy,” said Hartmann, who started the season behind Michael Neiner before he suffered a season-ending injury. “But there’s half of me that wonders what I could’ve done to get first.”

Hartmann advanced to state in 2009, but was sick and did not place. A year later, he was the highest Wolves’ placer since 215-pounder Matt Foxworthy finished in the same place in 2008. Brent Chriswell (189) and Josiah Kipperberg (112) were South’s last state champions in 2006.

“He has a lot of drive,” said South coach Chad Nass, noting that Hartmann maintains a 3.9 grade-point average. “Conner has really high expectations. When he sets his mind to something, he does it the right way.”

Hartmann dominated his first two opponents, pinning Lake Washington’s Yaroslov Petrechko in 1 minute, 59 seconds, and then earning a 11-0 decision versus Wenatchee’s Brian Nygard. He then pinned Curtis’ Kadyn Del Toro in 3:06 to set up a title match against Rutledge, a fellow junior. The two previously competed against each other in the Jan. 1-2 Pacific Coast Tournament in Vancouver, Wash. Rutledge won that match, 11-3.

This time, the two were tied, 2-all, entering the third round. But Hartmann was called for stalling and Rutledge, who placed third at 171 at state in 2009, later scored a two-point takedown.

“Hopefully if we face him again we’ll close that gap even more and win,” Nass said. “They basically were battling for position.”

Hartmann, who finished with a 35-3 record, helped the Wolves place 11th in the team standings with 53 points.

Another junior, Cody Barich, placed sixth at 135. Similar to Hartmann, Barich won his first two matches. He won decisions against a pair of Tahoma competitors — Michael Milat and Jordan Higa — 12-7 and 5-4, respectively.

Barich then was pinned by Ferris’ Brandon Riehle, who won the state championship, in 3:47. He then lost 5-2 against University’s Kevin Harder and 5-2 versus Davis’ Nick Sauceda in the fifth- and sixth-place match.

“I thought he wrestled with a lot of heart and passion,” Nass said.

South had two seniors who placed. Craig Dyess finished seventh at 160. Dyess won his first match, 3-1, against Snohomish’s Austin Thody before losing 18-6 to Lake Stevens’ Jacob Anderson in the quarterfinals. He later won a 2-1 decision against Evergreen’s Cort Nutter to place.

“He went out there and competed every time he was on the mat,” Nass said. “It was really neat to see the seniors leave the tournament with medals around their necks.”

The other was Spencer Ricketson, who finished seventh at 130. Ricketson was pinned in his first match by Edmonds-Woodway’s Ryan Deweese in 1:33. He returned to win three matches in the consolation bracket, including a 6-5 decision against Auburn’s Willie Pineda, to place.

Nass said he was impressed by Ricketson’s ability to find ways to win.

Junior Terrill Wilson was the Wolves’ other seventh-place finisher. He won his opening match at 119, 6-4, against Moses Lake’s Andrew Valdez. Wilson then lost 10-3 against Rogers’ Joey Palmer in the quarterfinals. He later earned a 9-5 victory versus Shorewood’s Brandon Leach to place.

In addition to the five wrestlers who placed, the Wolves sent juniors Kris Fenton (140) and Greg Morrison (135) and seniors Tom Decker (285), Taylor Lyman (145), Chris Nenninger (160), Guy Powell (189) and Hakeem Smith (152) to state. While those wrestlers did not place, Nass said he believes it is the first time in program history that each South competitor won a match at state.

“I thought they showed a lot of toughness,” he said. “I’m really proud of them.”

Team scores: 1, University 156.5; 2, Tahoma 114.5; 3, Moses Lake 90; 4, Lake Stevens 89.5; 5, Auburn 87; 6, Graham Kapowsin 72; 7, Mead 69; 8, Emerald Ridge 58.5; 9, Kelso 57; 10, Rogers (Puyallup) 55.5; 11, South Kitsap 53; 12, Snohomish 53; 13, Ferris 49.5; 14, Todd Beamer 48; 15, Wenatchee 43; 16, Kentwood 42.5; 17, Heritage 42; 18, Jefferson 41.5; 19, Evergreen (Vancouver) 37; 20, Edmonds-Woodway 32; 21, Kent-Meridian 23; 22, Decatur 21; 24, Southridge 19.5; 25, Skyline 18; 26, Lake Washington 17; 27, Davis 17; 28, Curtis 16; 29, Kentlake 16; 30, Gig Harbor 15; 31, Mountain View 14.5; 32, Foss 13; 33, Central Valley 13; 34, Arlington 11; 35, Newport 9; 36, Richland 9; 37, Walla Walla 9; 38, Olympia 9; 39, Marysville-Pilchuk 8; 40, Mariner 6; 41, Chiawana 6; 42, Shorewood 6; 43, Stanwood 6; 44, Central Kitsap 5; 45, Wilson 4; 46, Mount Tahoma 3; 47, Kentridge 3; 48, Monroe 3; 49, Battle Ground 3; 50, Pasco 2; 51, Kamiak 2; 52, Spanaway Lake 2; 53, Issaquah 1.

Championship matches

103: Steven Hopkins (Tah) p. Ruben Navejas (KW) 5:58. 112: Josh Heinzer (LS) d. Bryce Evans (Rog) 13-5. 119: Ares Carpio (TB) d. Joey Palmer (Rog) 9-3. 125: Jeremy Golding (Mead) d. Efrain Aguilar (GK) 5-4 OT. 130: Kurtis Giberson (Kel) d. Ryan Deweese (E-W) 4-1. 135: Brandon Riehle (Fer) p. Steven Walkley (LS) 5:01. 140: Tyler Lamb (Tah) d. Nico Moreno (ML) 7-2. 145: Kyle McIntosh (Jef) d. Pedro Mendoza (Kam) 10-7. 152: Ryan Zumwalt (Uni) p. Dylan Aparis (Dec) 3:21. 160: Jake Mason (Uni) d. Micah Morrill (Sno) 7-6 OT. 171: Dylan Rutledge (Aub) d. Conner Hartmann (SK) 5-2. 189: Nick Bayer (Tah) d. Mitch Steed (ER) 10-5. 215: Brian Chamberlain (ML) d. Konner Knudtsen (Tah) 9-4. 285: Kabe Fluaitt (ML) d. Nick Conlan (Aub) 7-3.

Other South Kitsap placers

119: Terrill Wilson, jr., seventh. 130: Spencer Ricketson, sr., seventh. 135: Cody Barich, jr., sixth. 160: Craig Dyess, sr., seventh.

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