Rifle wrestlers win Longmont Invitational
The Bears completed their undefeated run at Saturday’s Longmont Invitational by posting a 45-36 win over the host team to earn their second straight team championship in as many years.Staff ReportWhen challenged, Rifle’s wrestling team stepped up and delivered.The Bears completed their undefeated run at Saturday’s Longmont Invitational by posting a 45-36 win over the host team to earn their second straight team championship in as many years.That’s quite an accomplishment considering the Bears had to make up a 24-point deficit after leaving three weights open due to injuries prior to the championship match. After Rifle reached the team finals with host Longmont by defeating Regis 36-34 in the semifinals, coach Jim Suminski threw down the gauntlet to the team.”I told the kids if we were going to have a chance of winning this, we’re going to have to have some pins.”No problem.Alex Avila started the ball rolling when he downed his opponent in 1 minute, 13 seconds. After Avila’s win in the 103-pound match, the Bears continued their assault, pinning their next six opponents.”Longmont is really tough and had a full roster, “but our kids wrestled well,” Suminski said.In pool play, Rifle downed Longmont’s junior varsity, 64-18, bested Westminster, 39-37, and posted a 53-12 rout over Silver Creek to move into team semifinals with Regis.Branton Brown, Eddie Kreimier, brothers Tyler and Tyson Thompson, Derek Fruetel and Tyler Cose won their individual championship matches by pinfall.Four Rifle wrestlers went 5-0 in the tournament. Fruetel had the longest day among the quartet, defeating five opponents. Kreimier, Luke Wooten and Tyson Thompson, also unbeaten, earned some of their wins by forfeit.Jeff Zimmerman sat out the tournament’s final two duals due to injury. Casie Dunlap, nursing a sore elbow, didn’t wrestle Saturday. Both are expected to be in action at this weekend’s Class 4A Western Regional tournament in Montrose.The top four wrestlers from each of the 14 weight divisions advance to next week’s state championship tournament at the Pepsi Center in Denver.
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