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State wrestling notes: A glance at area wrestlers who won medals
Laulu bests Petrash in 4th clash
• Sand Creek senior Tuli Laulu avenged his regional final loss to Air Academy’s Justin Petrash with a 1-0 decision in the 4A 285-pound third-place match to finish 34-2 on the season. Petrash ended 36-5 with three of those losses coming to Laulu. Fellow Kadet Caleb Cunieo (35-9) lost 3-1 to Discovery Canyon’s Adrian Mack (33-4) for third place at 170.
• Cheyenne Mountain senior Bobby Amond returned to the state finals at 126 pounds for the second consecutive year. Unfortunately, the result was the same as he took the second step on the podium following a 12-4 decision to Palisade’s Dalton Hannigan.
“It’s tough for my last match of the season and career to end like this,” Amond said. “He wanted it more. I’ve learned a lot through wrestling, many life lessons. One of the biggest things is that there’s no winner or loser after a match. There’s always a lesson to be learned.”
• Peyton senior Dillon Pelkola finished off his high school career with a fourth-place finish in the 2A 120-pound classification. Pelkola (38-7) recorded three pins in the tournament, including two in under a minute, before falling to Merino junior Aris Shino.
• Senior Jordan Birch (30-15) dropped a 6-3 decision to Lamar freshman Michael Johnson to finish sixth for The Classical Academy.
• Coronado senior 126 Devan Cruz ended his career on a winning note with a 6-4 decision over Pomona’s Lucas Vagher for fifth place and a 40-7 record. Cruz also beat Vagher 6-1 in the quarterfinals. Junior Sam Smith (25-14) also took fifth for the Cougars at 195 with a 4-1 decision over Bear Creek’s Corky Phillips
• Fountain-Fort Carson sophomore Tracy Hancock (30-3) lost another tough match, falling 4-2 in overtime to Lakewood’s Joey Garcia, to place fourth at 195. Hancock narrowly missed a berth in the finals on a one-point loss decided in the closing seconds. Senior Rashawn Benford (29-11) recorded a 9-8 decision over Gateway’s Deyaun Trueblood for fifth place at 145.
• Doherty seniors Ricky Mahan and Thaddeus Hayes both took home medals. Mahan (34-9) placed fifth at 182 with a 12-6 decision over Overland’s Javier Alonso. Hayes (33-12) finished sixth at 138 with an 8-2 loss to Arvada West’s Taylor Bergquist.
• Falcon’s Kyle Soulka (26-9) won a 4-2 decision of Roosevelt’s Spencer Urban to claim third place at 160.
• Lewis-Palmer’s Joseph Glenn (25-11) pinned Windsor’s Joseph Keller in the 4A 170 fifth-place match.
• Mesa Ridge had two state placers: Brandon Gonzalez (37-8) took fourth at 113 and Dominique Hughes (32-11) finished sixth at 145. Jacob Hawthorne (182, 34-9) fell 12-3 to Windsor’s Cosme Martinez for a sixth-place finish for Vista Ridge.
• Woodland Park’s Thomas Chisholm (39-10) also finished sixth at 160, dropping an 8-7 decision to Windsor’s Vinny Gonzales.
• Pine Creek’s TJ Campbell (23-12), a junior, finished strong with a 10-5 decision over Ponderosa’s Tanner Olson for fifth place at 160.