RAPID CITY — This year’s Rapid City Wrestling Invitational had a little different look due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but most wrestlers and coaches were happy just to be wrestling.

Friday featured three separate individual tournaments in three separate rooms in the civic center and were eight-man brackets.  The Saturday portion of the tournament had each team wrestling four duals, back to back.

See the story at the bottom of this page for individual results from Spearfish, Lead-Deadwood, Belle Fourche, and Sturgis wrestlers.

The Sturgis Scoopers placed second in their bracket (Blue Pod) with 140.5 points, just behind Rapid City Stevens’ 168 points.

 Sturgis had two individual champions: Reese Jacobs (170 pounds) and Wren Jacobs (160).

Lead -Deadwood’s Tristen Fierbach won the 132-pound bracket in the Blue Pod.

The Spearfish Spartans had three champions in the Red Pod: Clayton Donovon (132 pounds), Oakley Blakeman (145), and Max Sailor (152).

Spearfish placed fourth with 106 points, and Belle Fourche placed seventh at 49 points. Pierre was first at 203 points.

John Bokker, Spearfish’s head coach, talked about his teams performance.  

“I thought we wrestled really well yesterday (Friday), and we saw a lot of top-ranked guys that we did well against,” Bokker said. “Clay Donovan went up against the number 1 guy in the state and beat him in overtime, and that was excellent. Max Sailor and Oakley Blakeman saw the top guy from Beresford, and they all wrestled very well.” Bokker said.

Many younger wrestlers got a lot of matches in.

“We are definitely thankful for the opportunity to even wrestle and are looking forward to the entire season,” he said.

Sturgis head coach Mike Abell said the team has done really well for the varsity athletes having only eight practices so far. He added the team needs to improve its physical conditioning.

“We are super young up top with a lot of freshmen. Aiden Werlinger has been impressive, Zak Juelfs has bright spots, and I am really impressed with our young kids, and our older kids are doing what is expected of them. They are wrestling hard, physical and doing things right,” Abell added.

Lead-Deadwood head coach Philip Thomas said the Golddiggers performed well on Friday for the most part.

“We had three placers, Tristen Fierbach wrestled great and won the bracket,” Thomas said.

 “For the most part, they wrestled way better than we did last week in Custer, so I am really proud of them as we needed a better showing,” Thomas added.

In the duals on Saturday, the Sturgis Scoopers were 4-0. They defeated Huron 57-19, Harding County 71-6, Belle Fourche 70-12, and Aberdeen 50-23.

The Spartans were 2-2 on the day with wins over Beresford-Alcester-Hudson (57-21) and Lead-Deadwood (72-12).  The Spartans fell to Pierre 57-18 and Mitchell 51-25.

Lead-Deadwood (1-3) did not have a full roster, and that definitely hurt in team points. The Golddiggers defeated Douglas 37-18 and fell to 84-0 Mitchell, 84-0 to Pierre, and Spearfish.

Belle Fourche finished 0-4 and fell to Sturgis, 47-29 to Rapid City Central, 58-23 to Aberdeen Central, and 46-36 to Huron.

Four area girls’ wrestlers won their respective brackets. They were Spearfish’s Shea Irion (Bracket 1) and Taylor Graveman (Bracket 4), Lead-Deadwood’s Trinity Zopp (Bracket 6), and Sturgis’ Madison Snyder (Bracket 5).

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