MEEKER | The school sponsored portion of middle school wrestling ended when spring break 2018 started and 14 young Cowboys from Meeker wrestled in the state-qualifying regional tournament. Nine of them qualified.
“These boys proved they were legitimately tough,” middle school coach Todd Morris said of the 14 wrestlers who competed in the regional tournament at Grand Junction High School last weekend. “It was fun and exciting to see them wrestle like they did.”
The top six placers, qualified for the state tournament, which will be held in Denver this weekend, including four champions, three runners-up, a consolation champ, a fifth place finishers and two seventh-places.
Kelton Turner (140), Zach Eskelson (152) and Parker Pontine (160) all won their respective brackets, as did fifth-grader Cade Blunt in the 112-pound bracket. Ty Goedert (85) and Tyson Portwood (135) and fourth-grader Dylan Hobbs (65), all finished second and Tanner Musser was the consolation champ at 160. Trae Kennedy qualified with a fifth place finish in the 80-pound bracket. Kaden Franklin (95) and Porter Hossack (120) both placed seventh.
“Kelton wrestled well, pinned a tough kid from Delta in the semis and beat up, then pinned an undefeated kid from Palisade,” coach Morris said. “Zach beat a really good kid from Hotchkiss and Parker finally got to wrestle someone his weight, as he has been wrestling up for us all year. He proved himself to be that true grit kind of kid winning handedly. Ty had a tough weight and wrestled well to make it to the finals and Tyson also wrestled well, getting into the finals too. Tyson wrestled for a true-second and won that too.”
The young Cowboys finished second as a team, behind their nemesis to the north, Craig. Kennedy, Goedert, Portwood, Turner, Eskelson, Pontine and Musser will all wrestle in the Middle School State tournament, while Hobbs and Blunt will also compete at the state level.
“I’d like to thank Kurt Blunt, Donald Hobbs, Terry Goedert, Coley Turner, Jason Musser and John Portwood for helping coach, as we were wrestling four-and-five matches at a time,” coach Morris said. “I also wanted to thank Joe Gutierrez for stepping up last week in Rangely to ref on such short notice.”