Bad Dogs start season off on right foot | CraigDailyPress.com

Bad Dogs start season off on right foot

Nate Waggenspack

A Bad Dogs wrestler (left) sizes up his opponent during a match at the Rocky Mountain Nationals Monster Match in Denver Nov. 3. The Bad Dogs youth wrestling team has competed two weekends, and produced multiple winners at each tournament.

The Bad Dogs wrestling team has had two successful meets to start the season and will look to build on the fast start when they return to competition in December.

After wrestling Oct. 27 at the Wolf Pack Wrestling Tournament in Edwards, the youth wrestling team traveled to Denver for the Rocky Mountain Nationals Monster Match. Both events produced strong results for the Bad Dogs, who had individuals who won or placed highly in their weight classes.

In the Wolf Pack Tournament, the youngest and oldest Bad Dogs to attend lead the way. Tyler Fortune, 10, went 3-0 with two pins and took first place in his division, while Kolten Vasquez, 4, was also 3-0 with two pins and the top spot. Six-year-old Dennis Piatt was the third first-place winner for the Bad Dogs at the tournament, going 2-0.

Eight Bad Dogs wrestlers attended the Inter-Mountain Wrestling League event, and five came home with first- or second-place finishes.

A week later it was time for the Rocky Mountain Nationals Nov. 3 at the National Western Stock Show Complex. With almost 1200 wrestlers from around the country in attendance, it was a big event for the Bad Dogs, who did not disappoint.

Jake Shelton, 10, won in the 101-pound class in the 10 and younger division. Drew Rothermund did well in two different weight classes. The 15 year-old took second at 72 lbs. and fourth at 78 lbs.

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"We've done real well," coach Dennis Fredrickson said. "The kids are doing good and the main thing is we're improving against common people we've wrestled before. That's a good way to measure."

Several Bad Dogs in their first two years of wrestling also did well. A "rookie" division is available at national competitions for newer wrestlers. Miguel Zaragozo (second), Tyler Fortune (third) and Colton Jones (fourth) all earned medals in their respective divisions and classes.

With their next tournament — scheduled for this weekend in Gypsum — canceled due to an Eagle Valley playoff football game, the Bad Dogs have a bit more time to work in practice before the next matches. Fredrickson is taking advantage by showing some new techniques.

"We're throwing in some new stuff that they can start drilling on that we can pick up later," he said. "We've been drilling a lot of basics and stuff they can use all the time. When we have a little bit of extra time we try to throw in a little extra stuff they can learn. Try to get them stepped up, a little more balanced."

Now the Bad Dogs are looking to be even better the next time they wrestle.

"I think we've come a long way," Fredrickson said. "And that's all a part of the commitment to the program from the other coaches and parents."

Nate Waggenspack can be reached at 875-1795 or nwaggenspack@craigdailypress.com. Follow Craig Daily Press sports coverage on Twitter at @CDP_Sports.