Sand Devil wrestlers find success at state

By Steven Law
Posted 2/29/24

Five Page wrestlers returned from the state tournament with some impressive hardware around their necks: Connor Peterson, Ian Yellowhair, Trina Bennett, Ilina Robbins, and Mya Tsinniginnie all …

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Sand Devil wrestlers find success at state


Five Page wrestlers returned from the state tournament with some impressive hardware around their necks: Connor Peterson, Ian Yellowhair, Trina Bennett, Ilina Robbins, and Mya Tsinniginnie all wrestled in the state championship medal rounds.

Nine Sand Devils qualified for state, but only Peterson and Yellowhair advanced into the medal rounds.

Head wrestling coach Kyran Keisling chalked it up to injuries, some poor performances and nerves.

“Overall, we just didn’t perform up to expectations,” he said, “but I was happy with their effort and attitude. All but two of these wrestlers are coming back next year and they’ve all learned deep lessons on how to improve for next year.”

Connor Peterson, sophomore, 120#

Connor Peterson capped an excellent season with an excellent state championship outing. Peterson advanced all the way to the final round and wrestled for the title. He came up just shy of perfect and finished as runner-up.

“Connor was really disappointed on losing that final match, but to be wrestling for the gold medal in state as a sophomore is something to be very proud of,” said Coach Keisling.

Coach Keisling believes the experience Peterson gained from this year’s state tournament will serve him well in the future.

“He came up a little short this time, but he learned some important lessons while he was in there,” said Coach Keisling, “and there’s only one way to learn those lessons and that is to be there, go through it, internalize it and improve on it.”

Ian Yellowhair, junior, 190#

Ian Yellowhair, a junior, placed 5th at state, one position higher than his performance last year.

“He finished strong in his medal match and got a pin,” said Coach Keisling. “As a team, we had some disappointing matches throughout the tournament and It was nice to finish the tournament with a pin and go out on a strong note.”

She Devils

For the She Devils, the state tournament proved an impressive finish to an impressive season.

“I feel like we did really awesome!” said She Devil coach Steven Smith. “We took four girls and three of them medaled. And the one who didn’t medal (Logan Rivers) still got us some valuable team points. Even though Logan didn’t medal at state, she had a great season. She’s only a freshman and competed hard. She’s going to do amazing things in the future.”

Ilina Robbins, Senior, 152#

Ilina Robbins finished 4th at state this year, capping off what was a superb regular season. She    placed in the top three or four in all the tournaments this year.

    “She’s an all-around awesome person,” said Coach Smith. “She has good things in store for her when she gets out into the world.”

Her absence from the wrestling room is going to be felt next year, said Coach Smith.

“She’s a really good teacher and a very selfless person,” said Coach Smith. “She helps out coaching and teaching the younger girls showing them techniques and other ways to improve their game. She’s going to be greatly missed when she leaves because of how helpful she is in the wrestling room.”

Coach Smith is encouraging Robbins to consider coaching as a future.

“I think she’s future coaching material,” he said. “I’d like for her to stick with wrestling and come back here and take my job.”

Trina Bennett, Senior, 120#

Trina Bennett brought home a sixth-place medal from state.

“She’s an outstanding wrestler and just an amazing person,” said Coach Smith. “She’s got a great practice regimen and a deep dedication to the sport. She missed very few practices this year.”

Bennett’s level of dedication and commitment set a high standard for the rest of the team,” said Coach Smith. He was very pleased when he saw her advance to the medal round.

“It always makes me happy when I see my dedicated wrestlers get results from their years of work and training,” said Coach Smith.

Mya Tsinniginnie, Junior, 138#

Mya Tsinniginnie finished in fourth place at state. She had an excellent season. She finished in the top three in every tournament we went to this year.

Coach Smith is optimistic about the future of the She Devils program.

“We’ve got a lot to look forward to in the coming years,” he said. “We had some of our wrestlers who didn’t quite make it to state this year who will make it next year. It’s going to be fun to watch.”