Lathrop Wrestling

Lathrop's Tyler Clooten (bottom) attempts to get out from underneath a Bethel wrestler on Saturday at Lathrop High School. 

The biggest wrestling meet so far this season went down this past weekend right here in Fairbanks as Lathrop hosted the Battle of the Interior. Nine schools, 11 rounds, action from Friday afternoon to late Saturday. There were too many competitions to go through every individual performance, but let’s take a look at how our local teams did.

The Malemutes seemed to pick up right where they left off last season when their girls team was winning state and the boys were coming in second. The boys began the battle taking on Wasilla with Lathrop earning a 51-27 victory. The gentlemen went on to take down Palmer 42-36 before downing West Valley 63-18.

After that, Lathrop defeated North Pole 54-16 before taking down Bethel 48-31. The Student Wrestling Development Program was the next team to challenge the Malemutes, but they too were no match as Lathrop triumphed 69-6. Next, the Malemutes beat Redington 60-24 and Eagle River 66-11. The boys’ only loss of the weekend came to South Anchorage 39-28.

The Lady Malemutes were up next and they began with a 30-6 triumph over Bethel before downing Redington by the same score. After triumphing over North Pole 42-6, Lathrop concluded their weekend with a 36-24 win over Palmer.

Just like the state competition, the Lathrop girls finished in first place while the boys took home second to South Anchorage.

Next up, the North Pole Patriot boys team. The fellas started things off well with a 45-24 win over Redington. Unfortunately, their next opponent was South Anchorage, and that contest ended in a 60-12 loss for North Pole. After losing to Palmer 54-18, the Pats fell to Lathrop. NPHS rebounded with a 30-18 victory over SWDP.

Next, the Pats fell to Eagle River 42-33 before taking down Wasilla 42-36. North Pole made it two in a row with a 42-24 win over West Valley before closing out with a 35-24 loss to Bethel.

The Lady Patriots were up next and they started off strong with a 24-18 win against Redington. After falling to Lathrop, there was a rare tie at 24-24 between North Pole and Palmer. Palmer won the tie breaker by fall points. The Pats ended their run with a 24-18 loss to Bethel.

The North Pole boys ended up in 7th place while the girls took home 5th.

The final local team was the West Valley Wolfpack. The boys started off the tournament with a 53-30 loss to Eagle River and followed it up with a 60-18 loss to Wasilla. After losing to Lathrop, the Wolfpack lost to Bethel 47-29 before finally earning their first win with a 36-26 triumph over Redington.

After losing to South 77-6, West Valley was defeated by Palmer 59-16. The loss to North Pole came after that, but the Wolfpack closed the tournament strong with a 42-24 victory over SWDP.

The next wrestling meet will come Tuesday at 6 p.m. at Delta when the Huskies host Eielson and Hutch.

Contact sports editor Hart Pisani at or 459-7530.

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