To start the second round of his March 21 championship round in the Rocky Mountain Nationals, Craig Bad Dog wrestler Deven Mosman found himself in unfamiliar territory.
Mosman, 10, owned a perfect 22-0 record in the 10-and-under 113-pound class, but against Randy Maynes — a wrestler Mosman had defeated a week before — he faced an uphill battle in Denver.
Maynes was the only thing standing between Mosman and the Triple Crown — a prize no Craig Bad Dog had claimed before.
“In the championship, he threw me in the ‘Russian arm drag,’” Mosman said. “And he threw me on my back and he got five points early in the first period.
“I had to fight my way back.”
What Mayne also did, however, was anger Mosman, who had won two National Tournaments and needed just one more to claim the Triple Crown.
“When the quarter was over I got really mad — I had a mad face,” Mosman said. “He knew he was dead.”
Mosman didn’t let up, and was able to pin his opponent to become the first wrestler from Craig to win the Triple Crown.
“It was awesome,” he said. “I was a little emotional, but I was so excited to be the first person to win from Craig.”
Mosman, who won a Jan. 2 national tournament in Loveland, and took first place at the March 12 to 14 Rocky Mountain National Tournament in Prescott, Ariz., started his third national tournament with a pair of pins.
“My first one, I had to wrestle some kid my friends had wrestled before,” he said. “He was pretty good, but I was aggressive like I always am, and I pinned him really fast.
“I pinned him in the first 48 seconds in the first period.”
Mosman’s second match was against one of the opponents he faced in the March 12 national tournament in Prescott.
“He knows my moves because I’ve wrestled him in every tournament this year,” Mosman said. “But, I pinned him in the second period.”
Mosman was not the only Bad Dog to return from Denver with hardware.
Mikinzie Klimper finished second, Chase Rule finished fifth, Shandon Hadley, Corbin and Dominic Beck and Jake Shelton all finished sixth.
Tristin Bailey and Cody Pleasant both finished third in the rookie division, and Dagan White finished fourth, also in the rookie division.
Next year, Mosman can further his stance in Bad Dogs lore when he tries to achieve the “Golden Gear,” by winning four national tournaments.
To get there, he will have to move up to tougher competition — a challenge he said he would be prepared for.
“I’ve seen the kids I have to wrestle, and they’re studs,” he said. “I can accomplish it, if I keep working hard and work towards that this summer.”
Ben Bulkeley can be reached at 875-1795 or firstname.lastname@example.org.