Devils wrestling sweeps past Huskies, Glenwood
Local bragging rights to Eagle Valley
EDWARDS — Eagle Valley wrestling put on its boss boots and showed who’s in charge against Glenwood Springs and Battle Mountain.
The Devils swept Tuesday night’s triangular in Edwards in dominating fashion, thrashing the Demons, 67-12, and the archrival Huskies, 60-21. Glenwood topped Battle Mountain in the opener, 48-24.
Clash of the heavyweights
While the Huskies admittedly had a difficult night, they did come out on top in the match of the night. Battle Mountain’s Jeremiah Vasquez squeaked by Eagle Valley’s Abraham Garcia on a pin at 7:58.
If that time doesn’t look normal, well, the match went to triple overtime.
This started as a deliberate affair as the two, who have wrestled each other since they were small kids, felt each other out, initially reluctant to shoot.
After two scoreless periods, the referee simultaneously penalized both wrestlers for stalling, making it 1-1.
After 6 minutes, it was starting to look like a war of attrition with an escape most likely to be the decider. Vasquez finally broke open the deadlock in the third extra frame with a 2-point reverse, followed by a pin just before the buzzer.
That’s a big win for the Huskies senior, who finished third in the state last winter.
“I knew it was going to go all three periods,” Vasquez said. “I had an extra gas can in the truck for emergencies. I decided to use that tonight.”
While Garcia ended up with the loss, his bout with Vasquez could serve him well down the road. The two will likely see each other again with a more regional schedule because of COVID.
“It’s a big confidence builder for him, especially going into overtime,” Devils coach Melvin Valdez said. “They were both pushing each other hard.”
Welcome back, Kodi
Eagle Valley’s Kodi Raper (138 pounds) is no stranger to the mat, but he was happy to be back on Tuesday. Raper broke his collar bone during football season, and it seems the delay in the start of Season B, aka winter sports, has helped him get back in time.
Raper said he was confident that his collar bone was healed — an important step — but that he’s not back to 100 percent.
“My goal is to get in there and get the match done as fast as I can,” Raper said.
And Raper needed just 27 and 54 seconds to record pins Tuesday night, so that seems to be as good a strategy as any.
The Devils’ Jason Morrison also had two wins but he went the long way for them. He went the full 6 against Glenwood’s Elo Garcia and got the pin at 5:47 against Battle Mountain’s Ignacio Velasco.
A tweak to Eagle Valley’s training likely helped Morrison.
“We train with 3-minute rounds,” Valdez said. “That’s what we do in practice. It makes them go better in 2-minute rounds.”
Eagle Valley seemed to gain momentum as the evening progressed. Valdez said he was pleased with his team’s approach to Tuesday’s tri.
“What jumped out is that we were more aggressive tonight,” Valdez said. “We were in better shape tonight than we have been. The boys went after it pretty well.”
Yes, it was Senior Night for the Huskies and they honored Vasquez, Anthony Sanchez and Tommy Johnson. While Vasquez did go 2-0 with a forfeit, Sanchez 182 pounds) celebrated by winning both of his matches.
Sanchez took care of Glenwood’s Cameron Small in 1:02 and scored a 6-2 decision over Eagle Valley’s Daniel Gallegos in a battle of rival running backs.