SANDPOINT — Jesse Sandelin (160) and Evan Barajas (106) helped the Badgers take an early 18-0 lead, before Sandpoint turned the tide and won the annual Battle for the B-Cup wrestling dual 47-30 recently at Sandpoint High School.
One of the highlights of the night was an exhibition match featuring two of the top wrestlers in the state. Sandpoint senior Hyrum Hunsaker (170) scored an 11-6 decision over the Badgers Jesse Sandelin (160), who finished second at state last season in the 3A ranks. Both figure to be contenders for a state title this year, and relished the chance for some salty competition prior to districts.
Hunsaker recently got invited to wrestle in the Idaho Hall of Fame Classic all-star dual in Boise last Saturday at Bishop Kelly, where he lost a tough defensive decision 3-1 to Austin Ford of 5A Bonneville. Hunsaker earned the invitation when he took down a Tri-State champion from state power Post Falls at the Rocky Mountain Rumble recently, as only the best two wrestlers in the state at each weight, regardless of class, are invited.
Badgers coach Conrad Garner felt the exhibition was good for both wrestlers, with Sandelin nearly securing a pin in the final seconds of the match.
“A state runner up (Sandelin) against Hunsaker. Neither kid had anything to win, but it was a thrilling match all the way to the end,” said Garner. “I was happy to jump out ahead. It was a good dual.”
Bonners Ferry will now tune up for the upcoming district tournament on Feb. 17.
SANDPOINT 47, BONNERS FERRY 30
160 — Jesse Sandelin (Bonners Ferry) p. Isaiah Fleck, 3:44.
98 — Austin Madden (Bonners Ferry), by forfeit.
106 — Evan Barajas (Bonners Ferry) p. Heather Wallace, 1:40.
113 — Casey Olesen (Sandpoint) d. Tyler Beazer, 10-3.
120 — Trevan Adam (Sandpoint) p. Mason Knapp, 1:48.
126 — Ben Tadlock (Bonners Ferry) d. Jake Ryan, 15-10.
132 — Chad Maas (Bonners Ferry) d. August Johnson, 8-2.
138 — Mason Bangeman (Sandpoint) tf. Hunter Brown, 21-5.
145 — Brady Nelson (Sandpoint) p. Preston Coon, 4:15.
152 — Dillan Mitton (Sandpoint) p. Nathaniel Varelman, :36.
170 — Hyrum Hunsaker (Sandpoint), by forfeit.
182 — Andrew Webster (Sandpoint) p. Taiga DeLeon. 1:00.
195 — Isaiah Caralis (Sandpoint) d. Donovan Varelman, 11-5.
220 — Shayne Walker (Bonners Ferry), by forfeit.
285 — Evan Stickelmeyer (Sandpoint) p. Larry Hoehne, :16.
Exhibition: Hyrum Hunsaker d. Jesse Sandelin 11-6.