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Six Mancos wrestlers advance at Colorado’s state wrestling meet

Cole Dainty-Guilfoyle pins Wray senior Caeden Bauer last year in the state wrestling tournament. He and fellow seniors Levi Martin, Elliott Sam and Dillon Eichner advanced in the first round Thursday in Denver. (Joel Priest/Special to The Journal)
Montezuma-Cortez’s Vreeken wins in first round

DENVER – Another state tournament, another bright start for Mancos wrestling.

Much like they accomplished a year ago, the Bluejays have put six wrestlers into the 2A quarterfinals, to be contested Friday. Joining them in the second round of the state tournament at Ball Arena, M-CHS senior DJ Vreeken likewise moved on to the quarterfinals of the 3A state tournament.

All 14 Southwest Colorado qualifiers still remain alive for podium positions, as we run down the action from Thursday’s Day 1 action from the Ball Arena floor.

The four Mancos senior wrestlers enjoyed bright starts to their final state tournaments, as 285-pound division senior Elliott Sam picked up a 7-0 win over Levi Seely of North Park. Defending state champion Cole Dainty-Guilfoyle began his path to a repeat with a pin of Yuma’s Daden Beauprez in the second period of their match at 175 pounds.

Levi Martin required less time to move on to the quarters, dispatching Jerry Holdren of Holly just over a minute into their match at 144 pounds. Meanwhile, Dillon Eichner took care of Wray’s Lance Buoy in one of the fastest pins of the day, taking a mere 21 seconds to win his 106-pound match.

Junior Brandon Vannest began his tournament with a win, easing past Wray’s Brody Richards at 150 pounds, while sophomore Jacob Martin also won in the 157-pound class, taking out Cedaredge’s Ethan Toothaker in a tight 10-7 decision.

Sophomore Colten Vannest (215 pounds) and freshman Teagan Mestes (120 pounds) both fell in their opening round matches to move to the consolation bracket.

For M-CHS, the road to the finals continued for senior DJ Vreeken, who posted a third-period pin of Brush’s Wiley Eicher in the 157-pound division. Teammates Hunter Goodall (190 pounds) and Bodie Stiegelmeyer (106 pounds) battled hard but succumbed to their opposition in their first-ever state matches.

As for Dove Creek, the Bulldogs’ three representatives all took opening round defeats, with junior Frankey Montoya (215 pounds) pushing his opponent Cody Netherton of Las Animas all the way until the final seconds of the third period before dropping his match. Teagan Larimore (126 pounds) and Cael Beanland (113 pounds) both dropped their inaugural matches in the tournament.

Championship bracket action, along with the opening rounds of the consolation bracket, will roll along on Friday, as all of the competitors will see action, trying to close in on podium positions. All matches that will award top-six podium spots will be contested on Saturday, Feb. 17 at Ball Arena in Denver.