RANGELY I The Rangely High School Panther wrestling team opened the season with a new head coach in the Maverick Duals at Colorado Mesa University on Saturday in Grand Junction, and the team won two of five duals it wrestled.
“We had 10 wrestlers open the season with a strong start,” new head coach Travis Witherell said.
The Panthers defeated Coal Ridge (36-34) and Gunnison (35-34), but lost duals to Delta, Montezuma-Cortez and Rifle.
“Our seniors, Jessy Powell, Caleb Lawson, Kiki Ruiz and Chance Sheppard all had a good showing,” coach Witherell said.
Coach Witherell said junior Nych Deleon “had a good tournament.”
“Nych went 4-1 and he will accomplish big things this year if he continues to work hard,” the coach said.
Freshmen C.J. Lucero and Lane Gillard both have 2-3 varsity records after their first high school tournament.
Neither freshman—Tristan Moore or Grady Nielson—won a match in Grand Junction, but coach Witherell was still excited about his younger wrestlers.
“They didn’t have a win, but they showed a lot of improvement each match,” he said. “We are excited about what they and other freshmen will accomplish this year.”
Junior Landon Rowley won a match at 132.
“We are ready to get better with each tournament, and we will continue to work hard,” coach Witherell said.
The Panthers will wrestle a dual against Hotchkiss on Friday then wrestle in the Panther Invitational in Delta on Saturday.