Rifle’s Alfini taken down in 4A State Championship bout
DENVER – In time, Rifle’s Anthony Alfini will forget about the loss to Shawn Hart. After all, it’s no shame to lose to the No. 1 wrestler in the state.
Admittedly downcast after losing his state championship bid for the 171-pound, Class 4A title Saturday night at the Pepsi Center, Alfini can look back on outstanding tournament.
Prior to the 5-2 defeat, the Bear senior dominated all three of his previous matches. On Thursday, he opened the tournament with a technical fall victory over Joel Graff of Mesa Ridge.
In Friday’s quarterfinals, Alfini pinned Windsor’s Travis Raisley in 5 minutes, 35 seconds to advance to the semifinals where he earned a 7-3 decision against Joe Unruh of Berthoud.
In the championship match Alfini got in trouble early.
Hart scored in the first 10 seconds, then held Alfini in a vise-like grasp until the second period after Alfini figured out how to escape the hold.
It would be the only points Alfini scored until earning another escape point late in the match.
Before then, Hart had followed up his earlier advantage by scoring a second takedown for a 5-1 lead.
Besides Alfini, three other Bears reached the final day of the three-day long state tournament.
Cody Ward took sixth place in the 4A, 130-pound tournament. The Rifle junior lost his bid for fifth place on a 12-7 overtime decision to Pueblo Centennial’s Brandon Prioreschi.
Late in the third period, Ward took a short-lived 7-5 lead over Prioreschi before the Bulldog senior extended the match to overtime when he reversed Ward’s hold as time expired.
In overtime, Prioreschi scored a takedown, then added to his 9-7 lead with a three-point near fall on backpoints at the end of the period.
Ward advanced to the medal round when he pinned Matt Schlitter of Pine Creek in the second-round consolations.
On Saturday, freshman Luke Wooten was pinned by Pine Creek’s Jordan Johnson in the second period of a third-round, 112-pound, Class 4A consolation match.
Later, a late score by Jesse Long extended his 160-pound third-round consolation match against Delta’s Kevin Morfitt to overtime.
Morfitt earned a 7-5 decision over the Bear senior by scoring a takedown in the first minute of the extra period.
Six of the 10 area qualifiers were eliminated after a second loss on Friday.
David Suminski and Casie Dunlap of Rifle, along with Grand Valley’s Jesse Neely advanced to the second round of the consolation tournament.
Rifle’s Eddie Kreimier and Nick Worley, plus Derrick McFarland of Basalt, concluded their respective seasons with defeats in the first round of the consolation bracket.
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I have read every book that Mitch Albom has written, most of them more than once.