Grand Valley’s Witt falls in semifinals
Post Independent Staff
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
DENVER – As David Witt sat, his back against a wall inside the Pepsi Center, Grand Valley head wrestling coach Rick Gallegos did his best to remind his star grappler what kind of season he’s put together. Though Witt lost in Friday’s Class 3A 170-pound semifinals at the state tournament in Denver, in Gallegos’ eyes, defeat did little to diminish the season the Grand Valley senior has put together in 2011-12.
“I just told him I know what he’s made of,” Gallegos said. “That’s the 42nd time he’s stepped out on the mat and the only time he didn’t get his hand raised.”
Witt indeed carried a 41-0 record into his semifinal bout with Bennett’s Caleb Copeland, who had a 26-0 record to his name entering the match.
Behind a series of takedowns, Copeland prevailed by a 12-5 count.
“We knew Copeland,” Gallegos said. “We’ve seen him wrestle the last couple years. He’s a real solid kid. He’s just solid on his feet.”
Like Witt, Copeland has a history of success at the state meet. The junior finished third at 152 pounds last February. Witt is a four-time state qualifier who finished fifth in 3A at 152 pounds last year.
Gallegos is confident Witt will rebound in today’s consolation semifinals, in which he’ll face either Centauri’s Jareb Aziz or Gunnison’s Jesse Duft. A win would put Witt in the 170-pound bracket’s third-place match.
“He’ll try to show what he’s made up of and come back strong,” Gallegos confidently proclaimed. “He did a hell of a job for us all year. I know what I get when he steps on the mat. He’ll bounce back.”
Witt didn’t have much to say in the wake of Friday’s defeat, but he did say he would fulfill his coach’s directive.
“He said, ‘You’ve got to bounce back,'” the Grand Valley senior said. “I plan on doing that.”
Copeland will face Valley’s Austin Trujillo (44-0) in tonight’s finals.
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