While illness and injury didn't stop the Moffat County High School wrestling team from defeating Meeker and Battle Mountain in Thursday night's triangular meet, the news didn't get any better for the Bulldogs.
Already without freshman Korey Kostur (125) and junior Charlie Martinez (160) for an uncertain amount of time with knee injuries, sophomore Brent Chamberlain (189) was hurt in the first period of his match against Meeker's Lee Overton.
"Things aren't getting better for us," said MCHS Roman Gutierrez. "You never want to see injuries but this late in the season makes things bleak."
The Bulldogs had to forfeit two weight classes in the triangular because junior Jason Mosher (140) and senior Ty Grandbouche (145) missed because of sickness.
"I think we'll be able to have Mosher back this weekend," Gutierrez said. "But we'll be without the other four."
As for the wrestlers still able to take it to the mat, Gutierrez thought the night went as planned.
After what was basically a warm up for the four wrestlers who had opponents against Battle Mountain, the Bulldogs shut out their first opponents.
Against Meeker, the second-ranked team in Class 2A, the Bulldogs were 9-5 and 6-3 in actual matches wrestled.
The night was a sophomore show for the Bulldogs as 10th graders Shayne Zimmerman (160) and Scott Garoutte (215) were the only two grapplers to pin their opponents for MCHS.
"It felt pretty good to have the crowd behind me at the end," Zimmerman said.
"(Meeker's Jeff Overton) moved up a weight class so he wouldn't have to wrestle (Ty) Weber (152), but it didn't quite work out they way he wanted."
As for the team, Zimmerman has noticed a difference in his teammates since they returned from Las Vegas.
"Usually we wrestle a lot better against Meeker," he said. "It seems, as a team, we're struggling to be as aggressive as we can be ever since the Vegas trip."
Other winners for the Bulldogs were seniors Bryan Hampton (119) and Ryan Hampton (130) and juniors Deric Dill (125) and Kaleb Brown (135).
"We won the matches we should have," Gutierrez said. "Overall the guys who did wrestle did a pretty good job tonight."
Gutierrez, who normally sits back and watches his wrestlers do what they have been taught, was up out of his chair and vocal in the matches against Meeker.
"I've got to make sure we don't lose to the old school," he said about wrestling his alma mater. "The kids were doing a pretty go job of listening tonight."
The Bulldogs will travel to Palisade this weekend for a triangular against Steamboat Springs and the host school.
David Pressgrove can be reached at 824-7031 or firstname.lastname@example.org.