Wrestlers pumped for state
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colo. ” There should be plenty of excitement for area wrestling fans this weekend ” 20 wrestlers to watch, four ranked in the top five and all four schools sending at least one representative to the Colorado state wrestling tournament in Denver.
Leading the Class 4A pack are Rifle sophomore James Conrardy (36-4 record) and senior Tim Long (29-4), wrestling at 119 and 152, respectively. Both are ranked No. 1 in their respective weight classes according to On the Mat, and will be looking to hold on to that ranking.
Bear senior Tyler Thompson (29-6), is currently ranked No. 5 and will hope to end his prep career with a bang. Fellow seniors Derek Fruetel, at 145 pounds, and Brandon Buhlman (140) will wrestle will the same hopes.
Junior Abram Dennis (160), sophomore Brian Key (189) and freshman James Martinez (103) will also be wrestling for Rifle.
Junior Tyler Rossow, hitting the mat in the 171-pound division, will be the lone Glenwood wrestler.
Prelims for 4A will begin at 1 p.m. Friday, with championship quarterfinals taking place Saturday at 1 p.m.
In the 3A tournament, five grapplers will represent Coal Ridge ” and they are all sophomores.
“They are all underclassmen and they have all had a great season and they continue to improve week in and week out,” said Coal Ridge head coach Rob Grumley. “Every coach tries to find the right formula to get them to peak at the right time, and you don’t know until the end, but they did at regionals (on Saturday to qualify for state).”
Wrestling at 130 pounds will be Keenan Grumley; Michael Cullen will compete in the 135-pound division; Michael Larsen will battle at 140; Josh Alsop will hit the mats at 152 pounds and Bradey Gasaway will wrestle at 171. Despite their youth, Grumley still has high expectations for his team.
“I told them not to be satisfied with just qualifying. I want them to battle and do everything they can and not just be happy to be there.”
Grand Valley will send six wrestlers to the mats in the Class 2A tournament. The Cardinals also feature a young squad with two juniors and four freshman.
One of those freshman, Ryan Gallegos, is ranked No. 2 in the 119-pound division. James Drinkhouse, at 112 pounds, Jared Tonder, at 130 pounds, and Tyler Miles, at 140 pounds, round out Grand Valley’s talented freshmen class.
Juniors Cody Miles, at 152, and Matt Cain, at 135, will hit the mats with a little more experience for the Cardinals.
The 2A and 3A prelims will go from 3-6:15 p.m. on Thursday, with the championship quarterfinals starting at 10 a.m. Saturday.
The Parade of Champions, when the title matches for all classes take place, will begin at 6:30 p.m. Saturday.
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The Coal Ridge High boys suffered their first 3A Western Slope League loss of the year Thursday night on the road at Gunnison, falling to the defending league champion Cowboys 65-45.