CASPER – Joel Costello and Zane Rising placed fourth at the season-ending Class 2A State Wrestling Championships on Saturday for Lingle-Fort Laramie High School at the Casper Events Center.
Both wrestlers reached the semifinal round of their respective weight brackets before suffering their first loss of weekend.
“When you get in the medal matches like that, things happen. Joel gets tossed. That’s a different match if that situation doesn’t happened,” L-FL coach Brandon Gifford said. “Those guys knew it was going to be a battle. I’m proud of them regardless.”
At 106 pounds, Costello knocked off Niobrara County’s Donovan Kruse by fall and Wright’s Kagen Baker by a 4-3 decision to reach the semifinals.
Costello was pinned by Sean Buckmiller, the eventual state runner-up, in the semifinal round.
In the consolation semifinal, he pinned Rocky Mountain’s Ethan Crawford to reach the third-place bout.
The win setup a rematch with Baker, and this time, Baker pulled out a 6-0 decision.
In the 145-pound bracket, Rising rolled to a pair of pins over Saratoga’s John Powell and Thermopolis’ Jeffery VanAntwerp.
In the semifinal round, Rising was pinned by Kemmerer’s Donny Proffit, the eventual 145-pound state champion.
In the consolation semifinal, Rising edged Moorcroft’s Darrian Black by a 7-5 decision to move on to the third-place match where Rising was pinned by Big Piney’s Ethan Long.
Jaden Houk went 0-2 on the weekend, being eliminated from the tournament on Friday afternoon.
The Doggers finished 17th with 32 points. Moorcroft won the team title with 185 points, while Kemmerer was second with 181. Glenrock was third with 155.
“I’m impressed with the improvements we’ve made. That kind of success breeds success,” Gifford said. “We’ve got a good group of eighth graders coming in to be a part of something special that we can continue to build into the future. You get more kids like that in the practice room, your improvements get better and increase a lot more than when you have just a few kids in the room.
“We have lots to look forward to and lots to build on.”