Butte High wrestlers sweep Bozeman schools

(Photo by Logan Parvinen of Butte  Sports.) 

By: Logan Parvinen

With the high school wrestling season approaching the final stretch, the Butte High Bulldogs have found the right gear and are ready to make an impact before divisional qualifying. The Bulldogs’ second-to-last dual meet was against the two Bozeman schools, the Bozeman Hawks and the Gallatin Raptors.

Butte High – 57, Bozeman High – 18

With the Bulldogs facing a short-handed Bozeman High team, they sent in some spry JV wrestlers to get some varsity experience. 285 lb Waylond Hicks picked up his first varsity win by pinfall in the first period. 120-lb Colter Espelin, 126-lb Grady Winston, and 152-lb Derek Averyt also secured first-period pinfall victories for the Bulldogs.

The only Bulldog to go the distance for the Bulldogs was 145-lb Jake Bailey, who won 11-5 after displaying solid technical skills. Butte High also saw action from 160-lb Maddox Kroon, 170-lb Kasen O’Keefe, and 205-lb Garrett Henson.

The Butte High Bulldogs had five wrestlers win by forfeit: 182-lb Bridger Brancamp, 103-lb Keegan Hunt, 113-lb Lincoln Zell, 133-lb Joey Ward, and 138-lb Cameron Fleege.

Butte High also saw action for the girls’ wrestling team, with Kierra Case being the lone girl to get a match against Bozeman High. Kierra would lose in the second-period pinfall to Kaitlyn Thorn.

Butte High – 55, Gallatin High – 18

Butte High ended the night by defeating an opponent they have oddly gotten to know quite well this season. The Raptors of Gallatin High School and the Butte High Bulldogs have now faced each other three times this season in dual formats.

“This is the third time we’ve faced them this season, and each time is as fun as the last,” said Butte High coach Cory Johnston. “Coach (Laslovich) has a good young group of kids over there, and they will be really good for years to come.”

The dual went from smallest to largest, starting at 103. Butte saw three straight pinfall victories from 103-lb Keegan Hunt, 113-lb Bradey Doyle, and 120-lb Bridger Garrison to open the dual 18-0. Ty Laslovich of Gallatin High was the Raptor’s first victory, winning by pinfall over Grady Winston at 126 lbs.

However, a slight speed bump didn’t affect the momentum, as Butte High would see pinfall victories from 132-lb Ryder McEwen, 138-lb Bode Hazlett, and Trey Hansen. 152-lb Will Stepan went the distance in a 10-0 victory over Carson Shaw of Gallatin.

After a dominant Maverick “Top Gun” McEwen pinfall, Aiden Cuchine tested his conditioning in an 8-6 victory over Brayden Shaw of Gallatin. 182-lb Bridger Brancamp and 205-lb Garrett Henson each put up a fight in their respective matches but did not come away with the win in the end. To end the night on a good note, 285-lb Kade Schleeman continues his dominance with a pinfall victory.

The Butte High Girls had two matches against Gallatin, and both were wins. In the first match, Ayden Gonzales of Butte faced Amira Gonzales of Gallatin (no relation, as far as I’m aware). Ayden was able to win by pinfall in the first period. The next match saw Bella Real of Butte face off against Laurel Anne Nagel. With both opponents wholly gassed at the end of the match, Bella was the last one standing in a hard-fought 13-11 victory.

Butte High went 12-7 in the JV matches, with 160-lb Reece Cunneen seeing the most mat time with three JV matches (1-2). In addition to their varsity matches against Bozeman, 160-lb Maddux Kroon (0-2) and 170-lb Kasen O’Keefe (1-1) each wrestled two JV matches apiece. Lincoln Zell, Isaiah Burch, Conner Espelin, River Wagnon, Austin Belisario, Joey Ward, Cameron Fleege, and Quintin Dennison found the victory column in their JV matches.

The Bulldogs will host Glacier High and Flathead High on Saturday, January 27th, at noon, at ye olde Butte High gym. This dual meet will be the last matchup before divisional qualifiers in Helena on February 2nd and 3rd.


Butte High vs. Bozeman

182 – Bridger Brancamp (Butte) win by forfeit

205 – Hector Gallegos (Bozeman) pinned Garrett Henson (Butte) 1:14

285 – Waylond Hicks (Butte) pinned Nassir Abraham (Bozeman) 1:05

103 – Keegan Hunt (Butte) win by forfeit

113 – Lincoln Zell (Butte) win by forfeit

120 – Colter Espelin (Butte) pinned August Blunk (Bozeman) :45

126 – Grady Winston (Butte) pinned Griffin Fosdal (Bozeman) :25

133 – Joey Ward (Butte) win by forfeit

138 – Cameron Fleege (Butte) win by forfeit

145 – Jake Bailey (Butte) def. Anderson Lannoye (Bozeman) 11-5

152 – Derek Averyt (Butte) pinned Matteo Cavallo (Bozeman) 1:55

160 – Andrew Sykes (Bozeman) pinned Maddux Kroon (Butte) 3:54

170 – Jaden Bateson (Bozeman) pinned Kasen O’Keefe (Butte) :48

Butte High vs. Gallatin High

103 – Keegan Hunt (Butte) pinned Kobe Binenstock (Gallatin) :38

113 – Doyle, Bradey (Butte) pinned Silas Reeves (Gallatin) 3:44

120 – Bridger Garrison (Butte) pinned Talon Trettin (Gallatin) 3:08

126 – Ty Laslovich (Gallatin) pinned Grady Winston (Butte) 2:55

132 – Ryder McEwen (Butte) pinned John Jackson (Gallatin) :38

138 – Bode Hazlett (Butte) pinned Tavis Daly (Gallatin) 1:13

145 – Trey Hansen (Butte) pinned Brendan Bleau (Gallatin) 4:22

152 – Will Stepan (Butte) def. Carson Shaw (Gallatin) 10-0

160 – Maverick McEwen (Butte) pinned Cooper McGovern (Gallatin) 1:32

170 – Adien Cuchine (Butte) def. Brayden Shaw (Gallatin) 8-6

182 – Tommy Springman (Gallatin) pinned Bridger Brancamp (Butte) 2:06

205 – Weston James (Gallatin) pinned Garrett Henson (Butte) 2:54

285 – Kade Schleeman (Butte) pinned JD McWalter (Gallatin) 1:14