The Moffat County High School varsity wrestling team wasn’t competitive in dual match-ups Friday and Saturday in Green River, Wyo., due to low numbers, but head coach Roman Gutierrez said some of the individual performances were the best of the season. Junior Garrett Stewart, pictured above, finished the tournament with a 6-1 record and senior Jake Blevins went 7-0 over the weekend.

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The Moffat County High School varsity wrestling team wasn’t competitive in dual match-ups Friday and Saturday in Green River, Wyo., due to low numbers, but head coach Roman Gutierrez said some of the individual performances were the best of the season. Junior Garrett Stewart, pictured above, finished the tournament with a 6-1 record and senior Jake Blevins went 7-0 over the weekend.

Bulldog grapplers record strong individual performances in Green River

Individual results from the Moffat County High School varsity wrestling team’s dual tournament Friday and Saturday in Green River, Wyo.:

(Name — weight — overall record)

• Danny Wilbur — 132 — 0-7

• Brayden Peterson — 138 — 5-2

• Garrett Stewart — 145 — 6-1

• Curtis Dunlap — 152 — 1-6

• Jake Blevins — 160 — 7-0

• Jesse Demoor — 170 — 5-2

— MCHS went 1-6 as a team

Roman Gutierrez has been looking for a breakout tournament for his Moffat County High School varsity wrestling team since the season began in December.

Gutierrez, the Bulldogs head coach, said the team is starting to make major strides and showed what they are capable of Friday and Saturday during a tournament in Green River, Wyo.

“The competition was really good and everyone that went wrestled really well,” he said. “They wrestled more aggressive than they have all season and did great with what they have been able to learn this season.”

The Bulldogs only took six wrestlers because of injuries, so the team went 1-6 in dual meets, but it was the individual performances that gave Gutierrez optimism for later in the season, he said.

Senior Jake Blevins went 7-0 and junior Garrett Stewart finished the tournament 6-1.

Sophomores Brayden Peterson and Jesse Demoor each racked up a 5-2 record while sophomore Curtis Dunlap went 1-6 and sophomore Danny Wilbur finished 0-7.

“With only six kids, even if we pin every kid we face, if the other team has a full team, we can’t win the dual meet,” Gutierrez said. “But, our wrestlers were able to compete for themselves individually and for their own pride. Each one of them got up and made things happen.”

Demoor, who headed into Green River coming off a third-place finish Jan. 7 in Las Vegas, continued to improve in all aspects on the mat, Gutierrez said.

“Jesse has a habit of getting behind and having to do some catch up,” he said. “He got into a couple of predicaments he couldn’t win in, but he did a good job of working hard and kept fighting until the end to get some good wins.”

Blevins, Stewart and Peterson are the three top returning wrestlers from last season, but Gutierrez said the three have gone up against some tough competition early in the season.

On Friday and Saturday, Gutierrez said the three wrestled one of their best tournaments of the season.

“It goes back to not allowing your opponent to make you make mistakes,” he said. “(In Green River), they forced the mistakes out of their opponents and capitalized on them. You have to come out with an aggressive style if you want to win consistently, and they did that early on over the weekend.”

Gutierrez said the coaching staff has been working with the wrestlers on making the right decisions when working for the top position.

In Green River, he said he saw improvements from almost everyone.

“We are starting to put kids to their backs and not just wrestling from behind,” he said. “Instead of staying up by the head, we are turning kids and it is promising as a coach to see the wrestlers do that.”

The Bulldogs compete in their only home meet of the season at 5 p.m. Thursday against Palisade and Steamboat Springs.

Gutierrez said he hasn’t seen Steamboat wrestle this season, but knows Palisade has some of the best grapplers in the state.

“Brayden will be going up against the No. 2 kid in his weight class and Jesse will have the No. 6 kid in his,” Gutierrez said. “Palisade has a really good team and we are really going to have to wrestle well to compete and challenge them.”

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