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State A wrestling: Aden Graves claims title No. 4, Sidney wins 5th straight

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Posted at 9:45 AM, Feb 13, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-13 11:45:45-05

BILLINGS — Make room for Aden Graves.

The Sidney senior defeated Lewistown's Wyatt Elam by decision at 160 pounds, 8-0, to win his fourth career state title. Graves is the 38th Montanan to accomplish the feat.

"I don't even really have words for it, you know what I mean? It's just something that I've had as a goal since I was little. To finally accomplish it, it's big and it's huge, not only for me, but everybody in Sidney that helped me get here," Graves said.

"That's the easiest coaching job I've ever done," Sidney head coach Guy Melby said. "I think he would have been a four-timer no matter who was coaching him. He's just that kind of kid. He does everything right. Good student, everybody likes him. He's just one of those guys that's willing to put the work in and he deserves to be a four-time state champion."

PHOTOS: State wrestling championships

That was the beginning of another banner day for the Eagles wrestling team. Sidney had five grapplers in the championship round, four of which won. Graves' freshman brother Reece picked up a state title at 113 pounds, junior Owen Lonski won at 126 pounds for his third title in three tries, and Zander Burnison defeated Frenchtown's Dylan McLean at 152 pounds.

The Eagles racked up 210.5 points, well clear of second-place Havre's 147.5. That marks a fifth consecutive team title for Sidney, giving the Eagles 13 in program history, breaking a tie with Havre for the most in Class A.

"Everybody kind of counted us out this year. We graduated a lot of guys. I kept telling everybody, 'We're not 300 good at the state tournament, but we're 200 good.' And we were," Melby said.

Sidney's lone championship contender not to come out on top was Grady Nelson at 170 pounds, as he fell to Havre's Orion Thivierge, who claimed his third consecutive title to wrap up his career. Miles City finished in third place thanks to a 1-2 finish in the heavyweight division, as Gabe Walker pinned teammate Holden Meged.

For full results of the State A wrestling championship matches, click here.