Eagle Valley sending five to state tourney
MONTROSE — It’s kind of strange to phrase it this way, but Ward and LaFramboise are the new guys for Eagle Valley wrestling going to this week’s state tournament at the Pepsi Center.
Devin Ward was really meant to be Denver-bound last year before separating his shoulder at regionals, while the LaFramboise family is no stranger to the state meet. It’s just that it’s young master Trever this go-round.
Eagle Valley is bringing five to the 3A, yes, 3A, meet, which starts on Thursday evening at The Can.
Ward finished second at last weekend’s regional tournament in Montrose, falling in the final to Cortez Seager Oliver. We only mention this because Oliver is the top seed at 182 pounds this weekend in Denver, and Ward would doubtless like a rematch — the two are on opposite sides of the bracket.
For the Eagle Valley senior, the berth in state is very sweet. As a junior, Ward seemed a lock for Denver until he got hurt last year.
“It’s pretty neat,” said coach Ron Beard, who does not dole out the compliments much. “For Devin, this is unfinished business. He’s been working hard for this since the end of last season.”
X-Man will be returning for the Devils at 220 pounds. Xavier Mendoza finished second in Montrose last weekend.
And Eagle Valley will have three sophomores in Denver. Noah Hermosillo took apart Sterling’s Jacob Breidenbach, 15-4, in the title match at 120 pounds. Like Hermosillo, Raul Lopez is making his second state trip in as many years. Lopez finished fourth and had to knock off Basalt’s Nolan Jones for his ticket. That was a 50-second fall.
LaFramboise is in at 132, having seen his older brother Tyler go to state three times. Trever finished third, falling only to Delta’s Kole Roberts, the eventual champ.
With a new alignment from CHSAA for the season, Eagle Valley moved down a classification this season, but Beard expects tough competition in Denver for his guys.
“It’ll be new for Devin and Trever,” Beard said. “Even though they’ve both gone and watched as spectators, Trever watched his brother, when they call your name and the stands are full, it’s a new experience. But it’s going to be new for everybody. We’re wrestling different teams from all over the state.”
Huskies bringing two
Freddy Morales is returning to state and Hector Aguirre is making his first state appearance after Battle Mountain’s appearance at 4A regionals in Golden.
Morales finished second at 126 pounds. He was two-and-out at state last year while wrestling with the flu.
“He’s just going to go out and have fun and wrestle his heart out,” Huskies coach Angelo Vasquez said.
Aguirre won only 12 matches last year. He’s 33-7 this year, another sign that Battle Mountain continues to work its way back from wrestling oblivion.
Battle Mountain finished the year with three wrestlers with more than 30 wins for the first time since 2000. Wyatt Harwood also broke the 30-win mark, but was a victim of paperwork and could not compete in regionals.
Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934, firstname.lastname@example.org and @cfreud.