Carson High’s Sheldon Miller takes 5th at Reno Tournament of Champions | Prep roundup
RENO — Sheldon Miller’s first goal was to make it to the second day of the prestigious Tournament of Champions, and the second was to medal.
He accomplished both on Saturday, and almost become the first Senator to ever make the finals of the TOC.
Miller went 4-2 for the weekend, finishing fifth and earning a medal.
“It feels great to get to the second day and medal.” Miller said. “It would have been nice to make the finals.”
Miller won his opening match on Saturday to go 3-0, and become the second CHS wrestler in 12 years to reach the TOC semifinals, following in the footsteps of Nico Garcia. The win assured him of medaling for the first time in four trips to the TOC.
In the semifinals, he ran into mammoth Brandon Kipper of Columbia.
Kipper got an early lead, and then pinned Miller in the latter stages of the first round.
“I’d beaten him the last three times we wrestled,” said a disappointed Miller of his semifinal loss. “I beat him in overtime at the Reno Worlds, and he was a little angry. I guess he remembered that.”
After the loss to Kipper, Miller ran into Elko’s Luis Salazar, who beat him in the finals at the Fallon Duals.
Miller jumped out to a 7-2 lead, but made a mistake and Salazar got a pin in the second round.
“He got caught in a throw,” first-year head coach Keith Shaffer said. “He was really aggressive and looked really good.”
After a lengthy break, Miller returned to the mat to face Blanchard’s Ryan Bracken for fifth place.
Miller fell behind 1-0, but got a throw and pin with 23 seconds left in the second to get the victory and snap his two-match losing streak.
The remaining three Carson wrestlers — Abel Carter (195), Brandon Basa (113) and Nathan Mersino (138) — were eliminated earlier in the day.
Basa, a senior, pinned De La Salle’s Riley Hilt in just 22 seconds. He then lost a 3-0 decision to Tyson Humpherys of Layton-Utah, and was eliminated after finishing 4-2 for the tournament.
Basa didn’t break a sweat in his first match.
“He shot and I got under him,” Basa said. “I didn’t have to do much.”
Humpherys did a good job in blanking Basa in the second consolation match.
“He was strong,” Basa said. “He was very talented and a good technician. I needed to be more aggressive.
“I feel like I’ve improved a lot (offensively) from last year. In terms of attacking more, I’m getting better.”
Carter pinned Chase Hyde of Fallon in his first consolation match on Saturday, and then was eliminated by Mark Inglehart-Allen (Texas), 8-4.
Carter had a 2-0 lead against Inglehart, but after that was unable to generate much offense. He was 5-2 for the tournament.
“I was very happy with the way I wrestled,” Carter said. “I wanted to get to the second day, and I did that.
“He (Inglehart) was a strong kid. He was able to block my best shots.”
Carter was able to land his shots with ease against Hyde. The Carson star was up 10-2 when he recorded the fall.
Carter, who moved up two weight classes this year, has been outstanding.
“He built himself up in football,” said assistant coach Nick Schlager. “He is a little light. He is usually facing guys who are cutting from 200. Abel is fast and strong. He has done a good job.”
Mersino, who dropped a 4-2 decision on Friday, tied his bout at 3 in the third quarter, but gave up a takedown in overtime and was eliminated. He finished 4-2 for the weekend.
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