December 20th-21st, the Nome wrestling team sent eleven wrestlers to the state meet and were joined by a number of Bering Strait School District teams including Brevig Mission and Gambell as the 2019 wrestling season drew to a close.
“We had five boys qualify and only one of the five guys was seeded, but four of the five placed.”– Dudley Homelvig
That’s Nome-Beltz wrestling coach Dudley Homelvig. Those four boys were Thomas Hannon who was fourth in the 112-weight class, JJ Marble who placed third in 130-weight class, Elden Cross who was third in 145-weight class, and Stephan Anderson who placed fifth in the 160-weight class. On the girls’ side, Natallie Tobuk was the lone Nome girl to place, coming in fourth in the 112-weight class.
For BSSD Schools, Alaina Pete of Brevig Mission came in second in the 160-weight class and Lexi Ivanoff of Unalakleet took fourth in the 189-weight class. On the boys side, Derek Seppilu Jr. of Savoonga came in third in the 215-weight class and Garrison Koutchak of Stebbins was sixth in the 189-weight class.
With an eye towards next season, Coach Homelvig talks about what the Nome wrestling team will look like next year.
“We lose two senior boys and one senior girl. Of course, we’re gonna miss them but with the progress our youngsters made, you know, the future looks pretty good.”– Dudley Homelvig
Those departing seniors are JJ Marble, Elden Cross, and Ava Earthman. While all have been consistent top-performers for the Nanooks this season, with Cross and Marble tying for the highest Nanook places at state in 2019, Homelvig says the future looks bright.
“We got some pretty good eight-graders coming up too.”– Dudley Homelvig
Only missing three seniors, the Nanook wrestlers will look for another state meet bid next season.
Image at top: Nome-grown senior wrestlers of Nome Beltz, Mt. Edgecumbe and Eielson; state placers at the 2019 ASAA State Wrestling Tournament. Photo courtesy of Kacey Miller.