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All 14 Cowboys place; Crook County rolls to title

Crook County put up big numbers at the Bill Geister Invitational Saturday in Clackamas.
   The Cowboys cruised to the title with a 100-plus point margin of victory, winning the eight-team event by a score of 294.5. Clackamas was next in line with 186.5.
   All 14 Crook County wrestlers placed (top four) in the competition, with 11 earning a trip to the finals and eight being crowned champions.
   "It gives us reserved confidence," said CCHS head coach Rob Porter, noting the competition will be at a higher level during the Coast Classic this weekend in North Bend. "Our kids are competing. They're believing in themselves. They're working hard and whenever you have a group of kids who are doing that, they're going to improve."
   At 103 pounds, Ben Neasham scored two quick pins and continues to dominate his opponents early in the season. Neasham hasn't lost a match and took down first at Clackamas.
   At 112, Luke Waetjen also stayed in the ranks of the unbeaten, winning his three matches by way of two pins and a technical fall coming in the finals to win his weight class.
   At 119, Wes York came away with three wins in a first-place effort, while Josh Meadows rallied to secure third at 125.
   At the 130-pound weight class, Phil Cholin turned in a second-place effort; Garrett Allen scored a pair of pins in a third-place finish at 135; Curtis Peebles continued to be undefeated by taking down the title at 140, while Tony Clure placed second at 145.
   In the 152 and 160-pound brackets respectively, Austin Shields and Jason Slaven came away from the tournament champions.
   "They showed tremendous gains," Porter said. "Jason had two come-from-behind victories and Austin had one himself, so both of them are showing gains and I'm really interested in seeing how they grow and flourish."
   Rounding out the day for the Cowboys, senior captain Evan Hendrix, ranked No. 1 in the state at 171, claimed top honors in his weight class, while Jason Wilkinson placed first and Jared Zeigler took fourth. Hendrix and Wilkinson are both undefeated for the season.
   The next stop on the road to state for Crook County is the Coast Classic, which expects to be jampacked with talent.
   "You know what, being new to the area, I have no idea what to expect at the Coast Classic, 32 teams, all of them are good -- so I don't know what to expect," Porter said. "My hope is that our kids are competitive and that they believe in what we're trying to do and that they go out and have a good outing there and I think they will."