Denver Three Hayden wrestlers will get the chance tonight to wrestle for a spot in the state championship match.
T-Lane Mazzola, Chad Terry and Treyben Letlow all won their quarterfinal matches this morning, earning places in the evening’s semifinal round.
“It was ups and downs, but we have three kids in the semifinals, and we feel good about that,” Hayden coach Ty Camilletti said about the morning’s wrestling session, which saw two of the Tigers’ wrestlers knocked from the championship bracket and two more expelled from the tournament entirely.
Letlow, one of just two undefeated wrestlers in all of Class 2A, had little trouble with his opponent, Swink’s Mark Schroeder. He spent much of his first-round match on Thursday working on moves, almost toying with that opponent before putting him away on cue from Camilletti. In the quarterfinals, he played no such games, pressing for the pin before he could break a sweat. He won in 32 seconds.
“I’m going to go in and give 110 percent tonight and try and get to the finals,” Letlow said. “I have to go out there and wrestle hard, or I’m going to lose. I’m wrestling to win, not to not lose.”
Mazzola won with a second-round pin, finishing his opponent off after dominating the first three minutes of the match. Terry, meanwhile, prevailed in a long and contentious match to earn a trip to the semis for the second consecutive year.
After a scoreless first period, Terry fell behind 2-0 in the second, one point coming for a stalling penalty and the other via an escape. Two more stalling penalties, both in Terry’s favor, evened the match, and the Hayden sophomore took a 3-2 lead with an escape late in the third period. He added two more points with a takedown in the waning seconds.
“Chad’s match was insane,” Camilletti said. “Chad was within one point of a state championship last year, so we know he can do it.”
Hayden did lose two of its five wrestlers who had advanced to the quarters and lost two for the duration of the tournament in consolation bracket losses.
Nick Williams fell behind 5-0 in the first round of his 135-pound quarterfinal match. He battled back to within one, 6-5, but spent the last minute of the third period desperately trying to roll Jon Duran of Antonito. He couldn’t, and lost.
Koleman Williams, meanwhile, was pinned in the second period at 152 pounds in the quarterfinals.
Scott Armbruster lost 2-1 in the first round of the consolation bracket at 125 pounds and Will Valora, at 285, was pinned after earning a 4-2 lead.
“I really hurt for those kids that are out,” Camilletti said. “Even in the matches we lost, we battled to the last second, as long as we could. That shows a lot of heart, or Tiger Pride, as we like to call it.”
A second round of consolation matches starts at 5:45 p.m. today, and the semifinals are set for 7:15.
Soroco’s Strait advances
Soroco 140-pounder David Strait joined his teammate Lauryn Bruggink in the second round of the consolation bracket at the state tournament, winning his first-round consolation match with a pin.
Strait beat Tanner Thomson of Stratton in 1 minute, 41 seconds. He advances to wrestle Trenton Rico of Burlington, who lost a 6-5 decision in the championship quarterfinals.
Bruggink is slated to wrestle Jared Airola of Nederland, who was pinned in the first round of his championship quarterfinal match.
— To reach Joel Reichenberger, call 871-4253 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org