Bears, Cards each place 4 in Great Eight

Phil SandovalGrand Junction CorespondentGlenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Phil Sandoval Grand Junction Free Press

GRAND JUNCTION – Eight to the Great Eight. The number who advanced to today’s Warrior Classic quarterfinals proves the depth of wrestling talent Rifle and Grand Valley have on their rosters this season.

And, depending on what happened in Friday’s consolation rounds that were going on at press time another 15 grapplers between the two schools could be in the hunt for a tournament medal.Four Bears and an equal number of Cardinals won both matches in their respective divisions to continue in the championship bracket.While each wrestler can boast of Friday’s accomplishment, all eight know there’s plenty of work remaining in the two-day, 34-team tournament to reach the award platform.Rifle freshman Marcus Arroyo has the first opportunity to reach the semifinals. He moved ahead in the 125-pound bracket on a second round 12-2 major decision over Palisade’s Jason Logsdon.The score was a complete turn-around from Arroyo’s tournament opener where he squeaked out a 3-2 victory over Moffat County’s Charlie Griffiths.

“In the morning I was tired because I didn’t eat because I wanted to make weight,” Arroyo said. “Then in the afternoon I got rehydrated and it got easier.”Aaroyo broke away late in the second period against Logsdon when he scored a three-point near fall. The move broke a 2-all tie. Holding a 5-2 lead entering the third period Arroyo added two more near falls and escaped a Logsdon hold for the final outcome.Grand Valley’s Ryan Gallegos, the state’s No. 1-ranked Class 2A 130-pound wrestler, won back-to-back decisions over Dustin Wilson of Class 5A Douglas County and Olathe’s Kyle Piatt to become Grand Valley’s school-first Warrior Classic quarterfinalist.”I just kept riding him,” Gallegos said of the 10-4 lead he build up on Piatt by the second period en route of a 17-5 major decision. “He was getting frustrated. I could see that and I just kept riding him and I got back points when I needed them.”Teammate Jared Tonder will wrestle against the 135-pound bracket’s top seed, Colton Huskey from Dove Creek, in a quarterfinal match. As will Rifle’s James Conrardy, who received the No. 1 pre-tournament seed in the 140-pound division.

The Bear junior polished off both of Friday’s opponents early, as he pinned first-round rival Josh Deines of Montrose in 1 minute, 10 seconds. Paonia’s Michael Brown failed to last that long. Conrardy knocked Brown back to the loser’s-out bracket after pinning the Eagles’ wrestler in 39 seconds.”I just want to go out there and do my best,” Conrardy said. “If I can get it over fast I’ll try to.”Grand Valley brothers Tyler and Cody Miles advanced to the quarterfinals at 152 and 160-pound brackets, respectively. Brian Key and Tad Davis of Rifle will also continue in the 215 and 275-pound championship bracket today.

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