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State Wrestling Observations and Fun Facts

Day One is History 

By-David Tesitor

Denver, CO 11:30 pm-  The outcome for the 2009 State wrestling tournament has yet to be written. For three Huerfano athletes, their goal for attaining a state title is still a possibility. For those three, their road is a tough one. It only gets harder from here. Tale for example, Adam Ortivez, La Veta’s very own undefeated wrestler. Adam is one of 5 wrestlers from among the ranks of the undefeated. Standing in his way is Jacob Garcia of Rocky Ford and Steve Velasquez of Center. Garcia was the top ranked wrestler at 103 pounds for most of the season and a three match losing streak. Adam passed the Rocky wrestler in the last two weeks of the season. For Garcia and his Rocky ford teammates, a victory in the 103 pound ranking will help his team in total point standings. Rocky is expected to finish in the top five teams. Paonia and Norwood are expected to battle for first place. Standing in their way is a stable of Panthers and Redskins.

‘On the Mat,’ a wrestling magazine has already come out predicted Ortivez could be Colorado next 4 time champion. Only 15 other young men have accomplished such a fete. The last was Tyler Graft of Loveland, who began his high school career at, you guessed it! 103 pounds.

Clayton Archuleta’s road is just as difficult. If he wins his first match tomorrow morning, he will likely meet Ty Sickles, the defending 2008- 2A champion. Sickles is predicted to repeat as champion. If the two meet, you can be sure; it would be one of the best matches of the day.

The final wrestler who has a chance is Nick Northup. Nick must go through the number one seed and returning champion, Michael Slatery. If Nick wins his first match Friday, he will likely face Slatery to determine who will wrestle for the championship.

The other wrestlers must win their first match tomorrow, otherwise their day is done.

There are other Tournament Fun Facts. The Panthers have 7 state champions in their history. The Redskins are looking for their first. The Redskins have sent a record 5 Regional Champions out of their 6 qualifiers. While this boasts the second highest percentage of Regional Champs versus qualifiers, (tiny Sedgwick County had 4 of 4), the accomplishment by no means is close to the total number of qualifiers other schools bring to the mats. Paonia brought 12 qualifiers (out of a possible 14) including 4 Regional champs. Rangely and Rocky Ford each brought 11 and Ignacio, 11.

The 2A and 3A championship quarter finals begin at 10 am, First round consolation rounds begin immediately after. The wrestlers will then have the afternoon off. Those advancing will move onto the second round consolation matches then the semi-finals.

It will be a feverish, fast morning and we will continue to post the results as they happen. Details of the matches will be posted after each respective session. Keep clicking away for the fastest, results anywhere.