Two RMS wrestlers state champs |

Two RMS wrestlers state champs

RIFLE – Training has a lot to do with it, but maybe there’s something in Rifle’s water supply that produces champion wrestlers.Keaton Long and James Conrardy, eighth-graders at Rifle Middle School, earned individual state champion honors at recent Front Range tournaments.Long climbed to the top of the medalist platform by winning the 112-pound, middle-school weight division at Colorado’s United States Girls Wrestling Association-sanctioned tournament in Fort Lupton.Her latest victory was the third time in as many years Long’s earned an individual state title at the annual event. Long, who opened the bracket with “an easy win,” pointed out that “girls wrestling at my age is starting to get real serious. The matches are competitive, and my last match was really, really tough.”She won the weight class, going unbeaten in three matches, wrapping up the 112-pound title with an 8-4 decision in the championship match against an opponent from Wellington.Conrardy took first place in the 95-pound, 15-and-under division at the Rocky Mountain Nationals tournament in Denver.”I felt like I was a little stronger than my opponent,” Conrardy said. He earned his championship win with a pin at the 3 minute, 33 second mark.The victory completed Conrardy’s unbeaten run in the weight class, which started with 33 wrestlers from seven states. Conrardy finished the tournament 5-0, including three victories by pins, another by a technical fall and one match by an 11-2 major decision.Two more Rifle youth wrestlers earned medals at the Rocky Mountain Nationals. Larry Schmueser took fourth place in the 74-pound division for boys 12 and under, and James Martinez earned sixth in the 15-and-under tournament at 81 pounds.All four wrestlers will wrap up the 2004-05 youth season at the Cliff Keen World Tournament April 1-3 in Reno, Nev.

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