Now that’s the ticket: Zang advances

Jeff Caspersen
Post Independent Staff
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Jeff Caspersen Post Independent

DENVER – Coy Zang had a little extra motivation as he took the mat for his second-round consolation match Friday night.

A win would mean he’d have an additional fan in the Pepsi Center stands on Saturday.

Rifle’s junior 132-pound wrestler defeated Sheridan’s John Pearce, 8-5, to stay alive at the state wrestling tournament in Denver. Zang’s father, Rod, who works for Flint Energy Services and was in Salt Lake City for his job at the time of his son’s Friday win, said he’d hop on a plane and head east to Denver if his son defeated Pearce.

Time to catch that flight, dad.

“It’s pretty sweet,” said Zang, who’s making his second state tournament appearance for the Class 3A Bears. “I want to win, for sure.”

Zang will face Valley’s Omar Sotelo in the consolation bracket’s third round, which begins at 10:30 a.m. today. He can still finish as high as third place.

Zang also defeated Ellicott’s Fabian Hermosillo on Friday, scoring an 11-5 win.

Senior Brandon Kittle (138 pounds) will join Zang in the consolation bracket’s third round. He beat Olathe’s Troy Rose, 5-2, and will next face Coal Ridge’s Devon Godeski.

Also on Friday, Kittle dropped a championship quarterfinal match to Alamosa’s Pablo Ortiz, 14-7.

Godeski and teammate Collin Carbone remained in the hunt with second-round consolation wins in other Class 3A action on Friday.

Godeski (138) won by a 10-2 major decision over Monte Vista’s Simon Schaefer, while Carbone (120) topped Sheridan’s Anthony Contreraz, 7-3.

Carbone, a senior, rebounded from Thursday’s loss in preliminaries to win both his Friday matches. He defeated Lamar’s Kaleb Hansen, 8-3, earlier in the day.

The previous day’s setback didn’t keep Carbone from making a furious push on Friday.

“You’ve got to keep going,” he said. “You’ve got to push all the way through. You can’t stop.”

Godeski, a senior who dropped a championship quarterfinal match to La Junta’s Josh Del Rio, 10-8, early Friday, also followed that philosophy, bouncing back with a win in the evening.

Carbone will next face Holy Family’s Joseph Prieto today, while Godeski will take on Rifle’s Kittle.

Grand Valley junior George Stagg pinned his way through a pair of Friday Class 3A consolation matches, knocking off Centauri’s Shane Wilson in 4 minutes, 47 seconds and Brush’s Beau Rocha in 1:40.

The 132-pounder will face Salida’s Anthony Muth in the consolation bracket’s third round today.

Stagg, known as “Junior” to his coaches and teammates, has come a long way in a short time wrestling – compared to others who have wrestled most of their lives.

“This is his fourth year, and we’ve put him on the fast track,” Grand Valley coach Rick Gallegos said. “He’s got years to make up, but he just goes out there and brawls and brawls and brawls. He’ll give up years of experience, but he’s never out of it. … He just finds a way.”

In 4A action, Glenwood Springs’ Miguel Vega scored a 5-3 win over Discovery Canyon’s Tanner Reynolds in the second round of consolation to extend his state stay. Earlier in the day, the 106-pound Vega, a senior, lost to Broomfield’s Drew Romero (pin, 3:48) in the championship quarterfinals.

Next, Vega will face Vista Ridge’s Brandon Poulus.

Zak Stepniewski pinned Durango’s Dillon Anthony in 3:38 in the second round of consolation at 113 pounds. The sophomore defeated Mullen’s Donald Sisneros, 14-1, earlier in the day and will face Pueblo Central’s Brandon Aragon next.

Mike Mills stayed in the hunt for bronze with a second-round consolation win over Delta’s Shane Anderson, 3-2. Mills lost to Broomfield’s Jonathan Stelling, 14-4, in the championship quarterfinals early Friday. On tap for the Glenwood senior is a matchup against Palisade’s Justin Ray.

Heavyweight Brian Ochoa won his second-round consolation match against Windsor’s Robert Bishop-Cotner by pin in 1:17. Earlier Friday, the senior lost by fall (39 seconds) to Greeley Central’s A.J. Polland in the championship quarterfinals.

Next for Ochoa is a third-round consolation match against Conifer’s Don Fuller.

Three Rifle wrestlers – Isaac Rider (120), Tony Galaviz (160) and Jose Prado (285) – were eliminated in first-round consolation matches on Friday. Fellow Bears Rogelio Navarro (113), Dallas Rohrig (126), A.J. Cordova (170) and Clayton Coombs (182) were all knocked out in the second round of consolation.

Grand Valley’s Cody Pfau (106) was ousted in the first round of consolation. Teammates Tucker Schultz (126), Michael Salazar (152) and Bryan Hegwood (160) were all eliminated in the second round of consolation.

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