No home sweep for Glenwood Springs grapplers |

No home sweep for Glenwood Springs grapplers

Baron Zahuranec
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Kelley Cox Post Independent

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado ” The Glenwood Springs wrestlers were hoping to pick up wins over Delta and Grand Valley on Thursday, but only came away with one. They downed Delta 40-28 to start the evening, but then ended up losing to Grand Valley, 44-32, to finish the night.

The Demons wrestled well against the Panthers, picking up three pins in a row at one point in the middle of the match to push their lead to 34-12. Kevin Campbell (189 pounds), A.J. Mims (215), and heavyweight Greg Orosz notched the pins.

Possibly the match of the night went to Mike Mills (112) when he won a 12-9 decision over Tyler Esplin. Mills was down 7-0 heading into the second period and was down 7-3 to start the third. But, that’s when he really turned it on.

After giving up two points on an escape to drop to 9-3, Mills rallied for nine straight points to close out the match for the win.

“Against Delta we wrestled really well,” Demons coach Guy Brickell said. “It was a really good match up for our kids. Little Mills (Mike) had the best match of the night, I think. He’ll go 100 miles per hour for six minutes. He’s pretty mentally tough.”

Along with those mentioned above, Chris Ayala (160) and Vincent Tsosie (125) picked up wins for Glenwood.

Against Grand Valley, the Demons knew they were in for a battle. According to On The Mat rankings, Grand Valley has five wrestlers ranked among the best in the state at their respective weights.

Ryan Gallegos (145) is slated number one; Jared Tonder (140) and Tyler Miles (152) are ranked second in their weight brackets; and James Drinkhouse (135) and Joe Joyner (285) are in third.

“With Grand Valley, we matched up well, but they’re a tough, tough program,” Brickell said. “They have state champions up and down their lineup.”

Gallegos started out the evening pinning the Demons Hunter McCallum in 4 minutes, 16 seconds to put the Cardinals up 6-0.

Glenwood found themselves trailing 18-8 after five matches, but after two forfeits (215 and 103) and back-to-back pins from Mike and Greg Mills, they were leading 32-22 with four bouts left.

That’s when the tide turned. Grand Valley’s Jerrod Busch beat Tsosie 8-0, and Drinkhouse and David Witt picked up pins to put the Cardinals back in front 38-32. The final margin of 44-32 came on Tonder’s win by forfeit at 140 pounds.

“They boys just went out there and wrestled real aggressive,” Cardinals coach Rick Gallegos said. “I thought we wrestled well on our feet, and aggressiveness was totally in our favor tonight.”

Grand Valley hasn’t been getting consistent production from throughout the lineup.

“It’s the same old story,” coach Gallegos said. “I’m waiting for the whole team to show up except for a chosen few.”

The Cardinals are at Coal Ridge today at 6 p.m. with Cedaredge and Hotchkiss. Grand Valley hasn’t been at any tournaments with Coal Ridge yet, so they don’t know what to exactly expect.

“It should make for some exciting matches,” coach Gallegos said.

The Demons are at the Thomas Jefferson Tournament this weekend.

“I’m expecting a reality check,” Brickell said. “We’re jumping into some very tough competition. We’ll get to see some of the East Slope schools that are in our conference that we don’t get to see much of. The kids need to know what they’ll be facing at regionals.”

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