Bad Dog grappler Chris Moschetti competes April 11 in the Meeker Invite. The wrestling tournament included Northwest League teams from Hayden, Steamboat Springs, Rifle, Rangely, Parachute, New Castle, Craig and Meeker. Moschetti did not place at the tournament but is pictured above during his one victory out of three matches.

Rodney Klimper/courtesy

Bad Dog grappler Chris Moschetti competes April 11 in the Meeker Invite. The wrestling tournament included Northwest League teams from Hayden, Steamboat Springs, Rifle, Rangely, Parachute, New Castle, Craig and Meeker. Moschetti did not place at the tournament but is pictured above during his one victory out of three matches.

Bad Dogs slam competition

Youth wrestling team earns high winning percentage, focuses on good sportsmanship

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Rodney Klimper/courtesy

Bad Dog T.J. Shelton wrestles with a Meeker competitor. Shelton placed first in the 12 and younger 100 pound bracket at the tournament.

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Rodney Klimper/courtesy

Deven Mosman competes April 11 with fellow Bad Dog T.J. Shelton at the Meeker Invite. Mosman placed first in the 10 and younger 95 pound bracket and second in the 12 and younger 100 pound bracket.

— Wrestlers from the Bad Dogs youth team wrapped up tournaments in Rangely and Meeker earlier this month with a staggering 136-49 combined record, good for close to a 75 percent winning percentage.

Twenty-six of the team's 57 wrestlers - between the ages of 4 and 12 years old - competed April 4 at Rangely. Overall, 12 wrestlers earned first-place finishes in their divisions, nine others finished second and three more placed third.

Some wrestlers competed in more than one division.

"We're pleased with how our wrestlers are progressing," assistant coach Rodney Klimper said. "We had some new kids join the team, and to see how much those kids were able to improve was nice."

A week later, on April 11 in Meeker, the Bad Dogs again showed well.

Twenty-six wrestlers competed at the Meeker Invite, and the team earned 16 first-place finishes, nine in second place and three in third place.

"The good thing with Meeker was (our wrestlers) were using new moves and able to produce with them," Klimper said. "With just a little bit of practice, they're picking it up."

The Bad Dogs are participating in the Northwest League portion of their schedule, which includes competing against eight teams from across the Western Slope.

It began with the Bad Dogs Invitational, the team's home meet March 28.

The team is wrestling today in Parachute and April 25 in New Castle. The season comes to a close May 2 before the team returns to the mat in October or early November.

Klimper said the team is making winning the right way a habit.

"They do it with good sportsmanship, which is one of the big things the Bad Dogs always push," he said.

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