Two Blazer grapplers place at state

CASPER – Torrington High School wrestlers Gabe Mitchell and Rhiley Grubbs brought home medals from the Wyoming State Wrestling Championships on Saturday.

Their day ended with mixed results with Grubbs winning the fifth-place bout at 220 pounds, while Mitchell lost in the 182-pound fifth-place match.

“I’m super proud of both of them,” THS coach Jared Hatley said. “There were a lot of obstacles that we had to overcome. Both of these guys came in a wrestled a really good tournament. Some of the stuff didn’t shake out as well as we would have liked to, but that’s the way it goes at the state tournament.”

Grubbs won his opening round match but dropped to the consolation side of the bracket with a loss in the quarterfinal round.

Grubbs rattled off a pair of pins to reach the consolation semifinal, where he was pinned, dropping him to the fifth-place match.

In the final match of the weekend, Grubbs picked up a 6-3 win over Kenneth Raymond, of Rawlins.

“Rhiley wrestled night and day better than he did last week,” Hatley said. “He wrestled the same kid last weekend, and he looked 100 times better tonight than he did last week. He’s worked really hard this last month or so.”

At 182 pounds, Mitchell reached the semifinal round before suffering his first loss to Cody’s Charlie Beaudrie. Mitchell lost a 4-2 decision to JaAron Smith of Star Valley before losing 9-3 to Matthew Seckman, of Powell, in the fifth-place match.

“Placing two out of seven is not what we came here to do, but it’s still something we can hang our hat on,” Hatley said. “Everyone has gotten better this year. Each week, we improved.”

D.J. Mackey (126 pounds), Kevin Ferguson (145) and Tyler Juma (160) survived day one with wins in the first round of the consolation side of the bracket, but all three suffered losses in the second round.

“We qualified seven out of the 10 kids we took to regionals, and we had kids win matches. That is an accomplishment in and of itself,” Hatley said. “Now, we need to move on and start training for next year and set the bar a little higher.”

As a team, Torrington was 17th with 30 points. Star Valley won the team title with 244 points, while Douglas was second with 198 points. Worland was third with 168.5.

“I just want to say thank you to everyone who supported us along the way,” Hatley said. “It’s been a good year, and it couldn’t have happened without the community support.”


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