POCATELLO • It was an unforgettable Saturday for many District IV wrestlers.
Minico’s Eddie Daniel faced second-seeded Pierce Mederos of Mountain Home in what was one of the most heavily anticipated matches of the Idaho State wrestling tournament Saturday.
The match was tied through three rounds and after the third the score was 4 to 4. In the final seconds of the first round of overtime, it looked like the match was headed towards and ultimate tie breaker. With ten seconds left, it looked like Mederis was going to score a takedown as he had one leg elevated. Mederis attempted to sweep Daniel’s free leg and as he did Daniel did a back flip landing on Mederis for a two point take down. The crowd erupted. Mountain Home’s coach lodged a protest decrying the flip was illegal. After ten minutes and a conference with the head referee, the takedown was allowed to stand making Daniel the new 113 pound 4A Champion.
Well the back-flip is sure to be seen across the country on replay, there were plenty of other highlights for local wrestlers.
Brian Borden of (138) Minico faced off against Salecedo of Caldwell for the state championship later Saturday. The match was a struggle for Borden in the beginning and by the end of the third round the score was 2-4 in Salecedo’s favor. But with ten seconds left on the clock, Borden pulled of an amazing reversal to bring home another gold medal for Minico.
The 145 pound final was all Magic Valley — a repeat of the District IV finals the week before. Zeke Williamson was again facing off against Koy Meredith of Minico. Meredith had carried the district title the week before in a narrow win over Williams. Meredith was the number one seed and the favorite to win it all. Williamson had different plans, however, and fought Meredith for every point. Williamson ended up winning with a score of 3-2 for the upset.
Zach Barrayo Jermone (182) fought hard but could not overcome the onslaught from Lakeland’s Randle’s and ended up losing by fall two minutes into the match.
Dallin Hatch of Twin Falls (195) faced off against Kuna’s undefeated Levi Perry. Hatch could not get a foothold against the three time champion and in the end lost 10-4. Number one seed Austin Hobbs Burley (220) was the favorite to win the 220 pound class. Ogaard of Mountain Home matched ferocity with Hobbs and ended up upsetting Hobbs in a 3-1 decision.
Last up was the heavyweights. Michael Easterling of Canyon Ridge (285) faced off against Drew Sowards of Caldwell.
Easterling had beaten Sowards at the Red Halverson Tournament with a reversal and near fall in the last 15 seconds of his match. Easterling said it was his hardest match of the year. Going into the finals, the two wrestlers knew each other a little better than they had at Red Halverson.
And the match mirrored their previous encounter for the first two rounds. Round one was scoreless. At the end of round two,. Sowards was up 1-0. But that is when the similarities ended. Easterling ended up getting an escape and two take downs to secure his state title with a score of 5-2. Easterling had not placed at the tournament last year and had not lost a match since the week before Christmas. Easterling finished with a 38-2 record.