Bulldogs hang tough against Steamboat
December 8, 2015
Moments before they took to the mats for their role in Tuesday night's triangular, the members of the Steamboat Springs High School wrestling team packed around second-year head coach Travis Bryant.
They threw their hands in and, following his lead, chanted together, "Intensity!"
Intensity the Sailors had, and that led them to a win against Coal Ridge in their first dual. It only got them so far against a stout Moffat County squad, however, and in the night's final dual, the Bulldogs outmatched Steamboat to complete a perfect evening.
"Steamboat's always so gosh darn competitive with us. They're always scrappy. They're always in it," Moffat County coach Tanner Linsacum said. "It could have gone either way. We got the better half this time, but you could do this whole thing again, and you'd get a different score."
Moffat County beat Coal Ridge, 45-21, then Steamboat, 48-24.
The Sailors beat Coal Ridge, 47-27, and as Linsacum said, it was a dual full of tight matches, that "intensity" Steamboat stressed right before starting the evening.
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None was quite as wild as the battle between Steamboat's Miles Buchan and Moffat's Jefferson Piatt, two underclassmen who went toe-to-toe at 145 pounds.
Piatt took a big early lead, going up 7-1. Buchan bounced back in a big way midway through the third period, however, rolling Piatt to his back and picking up five quick points for the reversal and the near fall.
"I honestly couldn't tell what I did," Buchan said. "A lot of this stuff is just muscle memory. I practice it, then it just comes out in a split second like that."
He threatened to finish with the pin, too, his teammates and coaches rising and the crowd roaring. He couldn't quite get there, however. Piatt, wrestling with bruised ribs, clinched his face in agony, but held on for the final 60 seconds to win, 7-6.
"Jefferson, he got himself in a pickle and fights through it, finds a way to get that win," Linsacum said. "We could have gotten pinned there, and it's a 12-point swing."
The story was similar elsewhere. Steamboat's Ethan Labriola, who won a nice match against Coal Ridge, wrestled a flailing, flipping, spinning match against Moffat's Issik Herod. Herod had the last trick, catching Labriola for a pin.
Steamboat won three matches via forfeit and got a win outright when Dakota Thevdt pinned John Peroulis after piling up a 12-2 lead.
Moffat, meanwhile, picked up wins at 182 from Huge Hernandez, who pinned Steamboat's Marley Carlson; 220, where Stelios Peroulis pinned Mo Munoz; 106, when Karson Cox caught Colton Pasternak in a pin; and 113, where Chris Moschetti beat Kyle Spognardi, 6-2.
Against Coal Ridge, Cox, Moschetti, Isaiah Herod, Issik Herod and Hernandez all won matches.
Junior Matthew Hansen helped lead Steamboat to the win against Coal Ridge, winning with a second round pin after racking up a 9-1 lead.
"I just went in with the mentality that I practice all through the week so I should be able to win," Hansen said. "He was pretty strong, one of my tougher opponents this year, but I kept grinding on what I know, and it paid off."
Hansen's now 6-0 on the season.
Thevdt lost a close match against Coal Ridge, roaring back from a 9-0 deficit to close, 12-8. Carlson was pinned, while Labriola won his match, 13-2, and Pasternak and Spognardi each picked up second-round pins, Pasternak in 2 minutes, 50 seconds and Spognardi in 2:53.
"We wrestled pretty tough, but there's definitely stuff we can improve on throughout the week," Hansen said.
Next up for Steamboat is a trip to Delta for a tournament Saturday.
Moffat County will travel Friday for a triangular against Rangely and Hotchkiss.