Planansky, the only Tiger wrestler left standing, returns for finals |

Planansky, the only Tiger wrestler left standing, returns for finals

Hayden High School's Hunter Planansky defeated Justin Mattison of Hotchkiss with a technical fall in the 182-pound semifinal during the CHSAA State Wrestling Tournament at the Pepsi Center on Friday, Feb. 21.
Shelby Reardon

DENVER — When most wrestlers win a semifinal match, they pump their fists, point to the crowd and grin. Hayden High School senior Hunter Planansky shrugged. 

To be fair, the bout did end in anticlimactic fashion. 

Trying to pin Hotchkiss wrestler Justin Mattison, Planansky accumulated 15 points, while his opponent had 1. Looking for the pin, the Tiger had Mattison on his back, but near the edge of the circle. While one referee started counting near fall points, the other said they went out of bounds.

With the stoppage, Planansky had more than a 15-point advantage over Mattison, securing the win.

“I was trying to pin him, but he’s super fast, so it’s hard to do it,” he said. “I kind of just went with it.”

For the second year in a row, Planansky will compete in the finals, where he took second last year. He says there will be one major change in 2020.

“To come out on top,” he said.

The second consolation round, often known as the blood round, was not kind to the Tigers. Sophomore Dylan Zimmerman and freshman Kyler Campbell, who made it to the quarterfinals, both lost by decisions and had to battle through the back end of the brackets.

Hayden freshman Kyler Campbell battles during the consolation round of the CHSAA State Wrestling Tournament at the Pepsi Center on Friday, Feb. 21.
Shelby Reardon

In his do-or-die battle, Campbell needed an escape to tie it in the third, but couldn’t break loose of DeAngelo Archuleta out of Monte Vista. He eventually lost, 5-2. 

Zimmerman suffered a similar fate in his elimination match. He earned a reversal early in the second to tie the bout at 2, but with three seconds left in the round, John Mall wrestler Chris McKenna answered with a reversal. Zimmerman picked up a point when McKenna was penalized for stalling, but couldn’t get McKenna on his back in the third to earn points. 

Last year, Zimmerman finished third, but will leave the 2020 tournament without placing. 

Hayden sophomore Dylan Zimmerman fell to Lain Yapoujian of Byers in the 132-pound quarterfinals at the CHSAA State Wrestling Tournament at the Pepsi Center on Friday, Feb. 21.
Shelby Reardon

“It’s been kind of a rough year,” said Hayden head coach Nick Planansky. “He’s not real happy about it, but he’s got a couple years left.” 

Junior Wyatt Murphy used a 12-0 major decision to stay alive in the first consolation round, while freshman Kodi Ingols did the same with a pin in 2:36. However, both lost in the next round. Murphy was pinned in the first round, as Ingols lost via major decision. 

“They all wrestled well, it was just tough on top,” said Nick. “We had some tough kids.” 

106: Cons. 1: Kodi Ingols, H, fall Andrew Hanningan, Platte Canyon, 2:36. Cons. 2: Malachi Gallegos, Del Norte, maj. dec. Ingols, H, 10-2. 
113: Champ. 1: Tatum White, Swink, fall Sabyn Hager, H, 3:29. Cons. 1: John Smith, Yuma, dec. Hager, H, 5-0. 
120: Quarterfinal: Michael Maldonado, Rocky Ford, dec. Kyler Campbell, H, 6-1. Cons. 2: DeAngelo Archuleta, Monte Vista, dec. Campbell, 5-2. 
132: Quarterfinal: Lain Yapoujian, Byers, dec. Dylan Zimmerman, H, 3-1. Cons. 2: Chris McKenna, John Mall, dec. Zimmerman, H, 4-3.
138: Cons. 1: Wyatt Murphy, H, maj. dec. Ivan Lopez, Centauri, 12-0. Cons. 2: Haden Camp, Buena Vista, fall Murphy, H, 1:24. 
170: Champ. 1: Gavin Brown, Akron, fall Garrett Salazar, H, 1:40. Cons. 1: Jackson Firebaugh, Peyton, fall Salazar, H, 2:00. 
182: Quarterfinal: Hunter Planansky, H, fall Ty Hardesty, Wray, 0:56. Semifinal: Planansky, tech. fall Justin Mattison, Hotchkiss, 4:54, 17-1.

To reach Shelby Reardon, call 970-871-4253, email or follow her on Twitter @ByShelbyReardon.

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