by David Tesitor
ARVADA- The John Mall Panther grapplers will travel to Arvada, CO tomorrow (Friday) to participate in the Ralston Valley Invitational Round Robin wrestling dual meet. Start time is at 8:15 am with competition on three separate meets. The format of the dual meet is different than most dual meets the Panthers have participated in. John Mall will have five different opponents Friday. Their opponents include teams from Ralston Valley (Arvada), Jefferson, Gateway, Glenwood Springs and Holy Family high schools.
Medals will be awarded to the school with the most points based on team standings which in turn is based on wins and head-to-head competition as well as individual champions.
Do not look for the Panthers to score many team points as they will be unable to mat wrestlers in every weight class. Those schools participating are from the larger school districts and will have participants in every weight class. This meet is a chance for the Cats to individually shine by wrestling some of the best wrestlers in the state.
By the end of the day it will be possible for an individual to garner five wins. Coach Vialpando should see some great competition from his grapplers. The participation against teams and wrestlers from larger 3A and 4A schools should give the Panthers experience and confidence as they enter into the last two months of the season.
This will also be a good opportunity for Bryan Crespin to keep his winning streak alive. Watching his performance against other heavyweights during these past three tournaments has demonstrated he is among the premier heavyweight wrestlers in the state and, barring any injuries, could be a state champion. Also look for individual wins from Jon Aguirre, Waylon Cordova, Clayton Archuleta and the rest of the Panther squad.
Look for the Journal next week for complete statistics on the success of the Panthers and individual participants. For anyone wishing to support our young athletes in person, Ralston Valley High School is located at 13355 W. 80th Ave. in Arvada. Take 1-70 West to Wadsworth then north to 80th, then head west for about three miles.