Golden breakthrough for Adams |

Golden breakthrough for Adams

120-pounder Ryan Adams on his way to defeating Sparks' Colby Bowman 18-3 Saturday at the Lions Invitational wrestling tournament at Douglas High.
Brad Coman |

Call it a breakthrough for Douglas High wrestler Ryan Adams.

The junior 120-pounder, who had two tournament silver medal performances to his credit previously, staged a late comeback Saturday night to earn his first career gold Saturday at the Carson Valley Lions Club Invitational. Teammate Blake Murray also captured first-place in his 160-pound weight class to help tournament host Douglas capture fifth-place in the 18-team field.

There was some late drama for Adams, who scored two points on a takedown in the final 10 seconds to pull out a 10-9 decision in the 120-pound championship match against Mason Smith of Fallon. Adams placed second one week before at the Sparks tournament with the aid of a semifinal win over Smith.

“He’s a very good wrestler,” Adams said of Smith, a Division I-A state tournament qualifier last year. “There were like 15 seconds left, I looked at the clock and I was down by one. I knew I had to do something and I was able to get him on a fireman’s carry and then ride him out.”

Adams, who also placed fourth last year at the Douglas tournament, defeated three straight opponents Saturday with an 11-4 triumph in the semifinals against Fallon’s Tallon Amezquita.

“We got to wear our new finals singlets, so that was cool,” Adams said, referring to white singlets with a Tiger image on the back.

Murray (25-4 season record) is unbeaten with two tournament titles so far in 2016, including four straight wins on Saturday. The 6-foot-2 Tiger pinned his first two opponents, winning in 1:27 and 35 seconds, then wrapped up his day with a 9-2 win in the finals against Eddie Montano. For Murray, it was a rematch of his win over Montano in the finals of the Sparks tournament.

“I’m wrestling pretty well,” Murray said. “I just feel like all the hard work’s starting to pay off and I’m starting to become a wrestler, finally.”

The Tigers, who only filled 10 of 14 weight classes during the tournament, compiled 103.5 points on the day.

Will Williams placed third at 138 pounds by winning four of five matches, all of which were decided by points. Williams won twice before he dropped an 8-1 decision in the semifinals to Fallon’s Sean McCormick, the eventual champion. Williams came back to win twice in the consolation bracket, capped by a 6-1 decision over John Hires-Caulk of Fernley.

Andrew Williams lost his first match then rebounded to defeat four straight opponents to capture third-place at 113 pounds. Williams bested Alec Mello of McQueen in the consolation finals, 5-4. His opening round loss came at the hands of Payton Lee from Spanish Springs, the eventual champion.

Kindel Isham placed fourth at 106 pounds, where he won two matches before dropping a 7-6 decision to Nickolas Foster of Spanish Springs in the semifinals.

Mason Melhus compiled a 2-2 record with two wins by fall in the 132-pound weight class. Chad Singer was 2-2 at 170 pounds, also winning two matches by fall.

Shane Trivitt went 1-2 at 113 pounds, Jacob Denton 1-2 at 120 pounds and Jacob Moss 1-2 at 145 pounds.

Murray added that he has drawn inspiration from his teammates through the season.

“Something about being around these guys reminds me of what we’re doing this all for … wrestling hard and giving it everything we’ve got,” he said.