Moose Jaw will be well represented at the Saskatchewan High School Athletics Association wrestling provincial championships after a host of local athletes posted top finishes at regionals in Weyburn on Saturday.
The top four competitors from each division advanced to provincials, with wrestlers from Peacock and Central landing a pair of first place finishes, five seconds, three thirds and one fourth.
Peacock’s Kyle Yamniuk led the way with a gold medal in the male 62-kilogram division, defeating Churchill School’s Keston Marinik by technical fall 15-4 in the final. It was a fairly smooth ride to the regional title for Yamniuk as he won his quarter-final match against Swift Current’s Kayden Dudley by fall at the 5:33 mark before taking a 10-0 technical fall over McLurg’s Darren Toothill in the semifinal.
Miheret Cridland of Peacock took first place in the female 53 kg class with a 2-0 round robin record. Cridland picked up a pair of technical falls in her wins, defeating Swift Current’s Kaitlyn Burns 10-0 and Carrot River’s Richelle Pompu 12-2.
Peacock’s Liam Vargo continued his solid first-year season by reaching the final in the male 59 kg class, where he dropped a 12-2 decision to McLurg’s Darian Thomas. Along the way, Vargo took a 12-1 win over Swift Current’s Josh Laroya and won by fall Prince Albert Carlton’s Logan Bair.
Competing in the same weight class, Peacock’s Justin Wiens lost his first match to Thomas but went on a tear from there, reeling off three straight wins by pinfall – two of them in under 20 seconds – to finish in third place.
Kayde Shymko of Peacock was second in the male 82 kg class, winning his first two matches 10-0 over Flin Flon’s Kyle Gurniak and 11-0 over Prince Albert Carlton’s Alex Halkett before falling to perennial provincial contender Cole Sanderson of Prince Albert St. Mary in the final.
It was much the same story for Central’s Brayden Johnson in the male 90 kg division, as he steamrolled his first two opponents – Meadow Lake’s James Villebrun and McLurg’s Wyatt Huber – by pinfall in 46 seconds and 1:13 respectively, only run into Wrestling Canada national cadet team member Carson Lee of Flin Flon in the final and drop a 12-0 decision.
Reigning provincial bronze medalist Myra Szabo will have a chance for another podium finish in the female 80 kg class after finishing second. She lost her first round robin match by fall to Yorkton’s Katelynne Hoffman but rebounded to defeat Carrot River’s Jasmine Little by fall in 34 seconds to book her provincial spot.
Central’s Alexis Bradish transitioned from Novice to Elite competition in style as she finished second in the 64 kg division. Bradish defeated Weyburn’s Kierra McCoy-Vallier 16-12 in the quarter-finals and Peacock’s Makayla Holmes by pinfall at 3:35 to advance to the gold medal match, where she lost by pin to Swift Current’s Aleah Nickel.
Taking third-place finishes were Peacock’s Dylan Yamniuk in the male 69 kg class and Ethan La Rose in the male 73 kg division, while Central’s Ulrik Tondevold took fourth place in the male 50 kg class.
Provincials begin Friday and run all day Saturday at Campbell Collegiate in Regina.