All his life, Centennial’s Jaron Chavez has lived in his brother’s shadow.
Jon Jay Chavez went on to wrestle at Cornell. Jon Jay Chavez won four Fargo national championships. Jon Jay Chavez took bronze in a world championship.
But Jaron accomplished a feat Jon Jay never did Saturday, repeating as a Rollie Lane Invitational champion at the Ford Idaho Center.
“He’s always the one on top. Everyone is always talking about him,” Jaron said. “This may not be as big as what he has accomplished, but it’s still something I’ve accomplished and I’m proud of. And he hasn’t, so it feels good.”
Jaron rolled through the Rollie Lane field to claim his second straight 160-pound title at the Treasure Valley’s largest tournament. The senior scored three pins in the early rounds, then cruised through the semifinals and finals with a pair of 13-1 decisions.
Dylan Feldmeier of Oregon’s Baker/Powder Valley posed little opposition in the championship as Jaron scored takedown after takedown and several nearfalls.
“I just definitely kept my composure and saw what was there,” Jaron said. “I just hit moves that I know. I didn’t overthink anything.”
The Chavez brothers grew up as sparring partners in California, starting the sport the same day when Jaron was 5 and Jon Jay 8. But with another Rollie Lane title under his belt, Jaron turns his attention to another district and state title.
A third state championship would put Jaron in rarified air. But more importantly, it’d give him another family bragging right with one more than his brother.
POST FALLS EARNS THREE-PEAT
The Trojans continued their reign at Rollie Lane, winning their third straight tournament at the Ford Idaho Center behind 10 placers and one champion. It also had one more placer on its “B” team.
Post Falls racked up 236 points, edging Lakeland by 56.5 points and winning its first tournament title of the season.
“This and Tri-State are the two best tournaments in Idaho, so it’s an honor to win this,” said Post Falls coach Pete Reardon, whose team is also the two-time defending 5A state champ. “This is one of the biggest things on our calendar beside the state tournament. For us, we gauge our team on can you win Tri-State, can you win Rollie, can you win state?”
Columbia was the top local finisher in third place at 177.5 points. It was the last Treasure Valley team to win Rollie Lane in 2010.
Oregon’s Crook County took fourth at 175.5, and Centennial rounded out the top five at 161.5.
ROCKY MOUNTAIN SURPRISES
The Grizzlies have made their mark in nearly every sport since opening in the fall of 2008 — except wrestling.
Rocky Mountain took a step to rectify that Saturday, winning two individual titles and finishing eighth at Rollie Lane, a program best.
Max Miller upset second-seeded James Fisher of Centennial 8-3 for the 145-pound title, the school’s first at Rollie. Nate Cooper followed moments later with a 10-4 victory over No. 1-seeded Jack Swisher of Nevada’s Churchill County for the 152-pound championship.
Heavyweight Keeghan Freeborn nearly added a third championship when he tied Columbia’s Brandon Kipper, an undefeated No. 1 seed, with 11 seconds left. But Kipper escaped with a granby roll at the buzzer to seal the title at 6-5.
“That’s a huge step. We’ve always wanted a champ here,” Rocky Mountain coach Dan Erekson said. “The next thing we want is a state champ.”
FOUR ROLLIE CHAMPS REPEAT
Jaron Chavez wasn’t the only wrestler to return to Rollie Lane and defend his title.
Post Falls’ Ridge Lovett cruised to the 106-pound title, running his high school record to 62-0.
Heath Hartley of Nyssa, Ore., successfully defended his 120-pound title. And Dalton Young, a Stanford commit from Lakeside, Wash., repeated at 132.