HYRUM - There's little question Logan has developed into one of 4A's most improved wrestling programs over the past two years.
The fact the Grizzlies are currently ranked fourth in the classification would strongly attest to this.
Nevertheless, Logan still has plenty of work to do in order to join the upper echelon of 4A wrestling, as was evidenced by its 41-28 setback to Mountain Crest on Thursday night at the ICON Activity Complex.
"I told these guys that Logan has a very, very good team and they're not ranked fourth in this classification for no reason," MC head coach Guy Burdett said. "I mean, they're a solid team and Bo's a wonderful coach, and we're going to have to do everything we can to beat them. And we did tonight. ... I'm perfectly fine with the result."
In order to pull off the upset, the Grizzlies needed to emerge victorious in the matches that pitted ranked grapplers against each other. However, Mountain Crest's Brady Dart (126 pounds) and Kaden Lindley (138) made sure that didn't happen.
Dart bounced back from allowing an early takedown to defeat Talon Teeples 8-2, while Lindley wrestled one of his best bouts of the season in outpointing Isaac Harrison 10-2. The technically-sound Lindley excelled in all positions in his systematic victory.
"He's just getting more complete as a wrestler," Burdett said. "He's always been really good on top, he's always been really good with his legs. And it's his feet - you saw how he flowed from move to move and won scrambles - that's the difference."
Another wrestler who garnered the praise of Burdett was 145-pounder Jordan Wengreen. Wengreen - "he's going to be special on his feet at some point," Burdett said - was only leading Kyle Weekes 4-3 when he seized control for good by executing a gator roll.
The athletic maneuver gave Wengreen a 9-3 lead and he continued to shine on his feet in a commanding 16-4 victory.
"I was pretty dang happy," Wengreen said of his takedowns. "I was trying to just make sure to get it set up right, and once it was there I hit it and went hard for the takedown."
As expected, Logan also had several kids who successfully showcased their talents. For starters, heavyweight Jacoby Wildman brought the Grizzly faithful to their feet by fending off a Kyler Funk half nelson and reversing and pinning him with a granby roll.
"That felt really good," Wildman said. "I was looking for it the whole time. He put a half in and I knew how to get it off, because if I tried to roll with the half on he would catch me on my back. So as soon as I ripped off the half, I rolled through and got him on his back."
In the most exciting bout of the evening, Logan's Hunter Ballam (152) reversed Tyrell Fredrickson with 10 seconds to go in the third round to pull off a thrilling 7-6 victory. Fredrickson beat Ballam by a single point a year ago.
The Grizzlies also earned a one-point victory at 132 pounds, where Quinn Hinckley held off a game Rayden Lindley, 4-3. Logan senior Spencer McKay kept his perfect record intact by sticking Tyrone Grantham in a first-round cradle - McKay's first match at 160 pounds.
"It's exciting for the team to close the gap," LHS head coach Bo Roundy said. "... I actually saw something that was exciting afterwards (and that's) the team's disappointed. You know, they're not celebrating 28 points. This team wants to win."
Any hope of a Grizzly victory was vanquished when Jon Boam (170), Taylon Niederhauser (182), Drake Comer (195) and Sylas Wells (220) notched four consecutive pins for the Mustangs, who were missing 120-pound standout Mason Kendrick (staph infection).
Also earning victories for Logan were Logan Harrison (113, pin) and Matt Mott (120, major decision), while Mountain Crest 106-pounder Trevor Lowe won by fall.
Bees 64, Bobcats 9
At Brigham City, Anthony Munoz (120) and Quinton Lopez (126) made sure Sky View didn't come home empty handed.
Lopez dominated his opponent as he was leading by 10 points before securing the pin at the 4:10 mark.
"Quinton wrestled probably one of the best matches I've seen him wrestle," SV head coach Bardett Bagley said. "... He was where he was supposed to be and he never really got out of position or high like he does a lot of times."
Munoz "was definitely a big bright spot for us," Bagley said, in prevailing 5-2.
Bobcat 106-pounder Eric Hansen lost an overtime heartbreaker to a ranked opponent and earned the praise of Bagley.