Pequot Lakes/Pine River-Backus finished 15th, led by Jake Poehler's fourth-place at 152 pounds at the 39-team Big Bear wrestling tournament Friday and Saturday, Dec. 14-15, in Cass Lake.
"We entered 12 wrestlers, and every wrestler won at least one match ... not many teams can say that," said Road Crew head coach Travis Hoffarth. "We have been stressing being the one that controls the tempo and looks to score first. We are improving in that area and that has led to more success."
Poehler finished 5-2 overall before losing the third-place match. Other top finishers for the Road Crew included Connor Tulenchik placing sixth at 138 and Josh Pettit placing seventh at 220.
"Jake (Poehler), who improved to 13-3 overall, does a good job of controlling the tempo in his matches," Hoffarth said. "And Connor (Tulenchik) had a really good tournament. He took seventh last year, so his goal is to be at the top of the podium next season. Josh (Pettit) has gotten off to a nice start this season. He is bigger and stronger and that has helped him a lot."
Hutchinson won the team title with 177 while Detroit Lakes was second at 164. The Road Crew had 77.
"Overall, our staff was pleased with our finish," Hoffarth said. "We had seven wrestlers advance into the second day. We were able to see a lot of section opponents and other teams that we have on our schedule this season in duals. So we have some ideas and a handful of things to work on before we see them again."
The Road Crew hosts Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton and Mora at 5 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 20 at Pine River.
Team scores: (39 teams) 1-Hutchinson 177, 2-Detroit Lakes 164, 3-Thief River Falls 167, 4-Minnewaska Area 138, 5-Badger-GB-MR 119, 6-Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa 117, 7-LPGE-Browerville 112.5, 8-Bertha-Hewitt/Verndale/PP 107, 9-Pierz 99, 10-(t) Blackduck-Cass Lake Bena 98, Lakeview North 98, 15-Pequot Lakes/Pine River-Backus 77, 22-Staples-Motley 64.5, 29-Aitkin 47, 31-Crosby-Ironton 38, 34-Wadena-Deer Creek 31
Road Crew records:
106: Riley Wilson 2-2
113: Owen Carlson 1-2
120: Caleb Ruhl 1-2
132: Evan Koering 2-2
138: 6-Connor Tulenchik 4-3
145: Harley Large 3-2
152: 4-Jake Poehler 5-2
160: Matthew Foster 1-2
170: Keenan Dahl 2-2
220: 7-Josh Pettit 3-2
285: Myca Reynolds 1-2