Grand Valley’s Miles claims bronze at state |

Grand Valley’s Miles claims bronze at state

Jeff Caspersen
Post Independent Staff
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

DENVER, Colorado – Tyler Miles wore a blank stare as he walked off the mat.

He had just pinned Bayfield’s Aaron Velasquez, nabbing bronze in Class 3A’s 152-pound weight class at the Colorado high school state wrestling tournament on Saturday. You would think that might elicit at least an inkling of joy.

But third place isn’t a championship, and a state championship is all the Grand Valley senior had any interest in bringing home.

“That’s just the kind of person he is,” said Rick Gallegos, Miles’ coach. “He’s got that spirit, the heart of a champion.”

Miles is, in fact, a champion. He won a 2A state title at 152 pounds in 2008. Ever since, anything short of a title hasn’t been enough.

Miles didn’t place at state last year after dropping out in the championship quarterfinals. Another letdown is the last thing he wanted in 2010.

“From what happened last year and the year before, I wanted to at least get to the finals,” Miles said. “It didn’t happen.”

Though a championship didn’t hang in the balance, Miles did finish his prep career with a bang.

After a loss to Centauri’s Iver Sandoval in Friday’s semifinal, Miles pinned Yuma’s Jon Korf in Saturday’s consolation semifinal to finish up his senior campaign with a 39-6 record.

“Even finishing his career with two pins, he’s not satisfied,” Gallegos said. “That’s just the kind of person he is.”

After falling out of the title chase at 135 pounds with a loss in Friday’s semifinal, Grand Valley junior Jerrod Busch had trouble summoning the motivation to rebound.

He dropped both of his Saturday matches and finished in sixth place overall. “I started off strong,” said Busch, referring to his state experience. “I just couldn’t finish it in the semifinal. It just kind of took it out of me. It was hard to find that motivation in me to press on through the consolations.”

Busch lost to La Junta’s Curtis Blasberg in the consolation semifinals and to Olathe’s Dylan Markley in the fifth-place match. Busch, who finished up the season with a 25-8 record, beat Markley to win a 3A Western Regional title last weekend.

“He’s a solid wrestler,” said Busch, who will no doubt launch a determined effort to bag a title next year.

And he knows exactly what it’ll take.

“Just perseverance,” he said. “You have to have that to outlast the good kids here. You’ve got to find a way to beat them.”

Coal Ridge sophomore Trevor Larsen had no interest in sugarcoating his state experience. He didn’t accomplish his goal of placing.

Asked if he enjoyed the weekend, he offered up just two words: “Not really.”

Larsen’s state stay ended Saturday morning with a third-round consolation loss to Cedaredge’s Martin Peterson. He wrapped the weekend with a 2-2 record and his sophomore season with a 22-9 mark.

Larsen plans on putting time in during the offseason to better any future state showings.

“I’ve got to work harder in order for it to pay off now,” he said. “I’ve got to do the stuff over the summer and offseason. I usually go to tournaments, like nationals and stuff. I just have to do that more. I have to get more mat time.”

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