Charlie Griffiths finishes MCHS tenure with 5th place at state tourney |

Charlie Griffiths finishes MCHS tenure with 5th place at state tourney

Joshua Gordon

Charlie Griffiths, left, practices in the Moffat County High School wrestling room Feb. 15 before heading to Denver for the 4A state wrestling tournament. Griffiths, an MCHS senior, placed fifth in the state in the 152-pound weight class.

Charlie Griffiths realized all dreams don't become reality.

In the last tournament of his senior season, Griffiths' ultimate goal was to become a 4A state wrestling champion.

After a narrow 4-3 loss in the semi-finals of the state tournament Friday to Garet Krohn of Arvada High School, Griffiths fell to the consolation bracket.

"I think I did fairly well because I lost to the eventual champion by one point," Griffiths said. "I was close, but I was a little disappointed because I didn't win a state title."

Griffiths placed fifth Saturday, the only member of the Moffat County High School varsity wrestling team to place in the state meet in Denver.

MCHS senior Cody Adams and sophomore Garrett Stewart also competed in the tournament, but neither placed.

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Griffiths said he was happy taking fifth, despite falling short of the championship he desired.

"I was really happy because I won the final match of my high school career," he said. "Not many guys can say that, so it was pretty cool."

Looking back, Griffiths said more cardio might have helped him reach his goal.

"I think I could have ran a little more and lifted some more weights," he said. "(Krohn) nailed a takedown early, and I couldn't get much going at the end."

Bulldogs coach Roman Gutierrez said Griffiths tried too hard on one move.

"(Griffiths) was really trying to set up his Granby (roll) and he was too focused on that," he said. "If we could have got him to work on his stand ups and switches, he may have done better."

Griffiths made the 4A state wrestling tournament all four years he competed and Gutierrez said it was all due to hard work.

"I feel Charlie had a great career," he said. "While some guys just have it, Charlie worked to get where he is and he outworked almost everyone of his opponents."

Since Griffiths started in fourth grade, Gutierrez said his improvement has been substantial.

"From when Charlie first started to now, he really developed into a great wrestler," he said. "He worked really hard and is one of those kids that deserves to win it all, but didn't quite get there."

With his high school career behind him, Griffiths said he is looking forward to college wrestling

Griffiths said his first choice is the University of Wyoming, but he will also consider Western State College and the Air Force.

"I am ready for the new chapter in my life," he said. "College wrestling will be a lot harder and I think it is going to be a lot of fun."

While a state title eluded him, Griffiths said he is setting sights on a new — a national championship.

"A lot of guys who never won a state title in high school went on to win a national title in college," he said. "I am going to take what I have been doing and keep working to get better."

Until he finds out where he will be attending in the fall, Griffiths said he would still try and get mat time.

"Now that I don't have to make weight, I am going to try and lift more and add muscle," he said. "I plan on competing in some Rocky Mountain National tournaments and maybe even some tournaments back East."

Gutierrez said he feels Griffiths will go on to do great things in wrestling.

"It is time for (Griffiths) to move on to bigger and better things," he said. "He had a great four years for Moffat County."


MCHS senior Charlie Griffiths round-by-round results from the 4A state wrestling tournament in Denver:

(Round — result)

• First — W pin 2:53

• Second — W pin 5:43

• Semi-finals — L 4-3 decision

• Consolation semi-finals — L 3-1 decision

• Fifth-place match — W 1-0 decision

— Griffiths finished 3-2 at the state tournament and won fifth place

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