It was a proud day to be a Buckaroo on February 7, when the Monticello High School wrestling squad marched into the Piute High School gymnasium, dominated the competition, and brought home their third Region Championship trophy in a row.
It was quite a sight when the wrestlers who would face off in the finals marched into the gym. One entire line-up, with the exception of a lone wrestler, proudly wore orange and black, as 13 Buckaroo wrestlers and their coaches marched up to take their place in the finals.
As soon as the 103 pound match was complete, it was nothing but Bucks for the rest of the finals. Wayne High School came into the final round 33.5 points behind the Bucks, and with nine wrestlers vying for titles. However, the Bucks left no doubt of their dominance on this day, crowning eight region champions and doubling their lead over Wayne to earn the region title.
Coach Kent Adair was voted Region Coach of the Year, and it was easy to see why. At the end of the day, every member of the varsity squad brought home a medal, 14 in all.
The eight Buckaroos who were crowned as Region Champions are David Boyle, CJ Cordasco, Reed Steele, Gabe Beh, Adam Martinez, Chase Randall, Tyrel Shupe and Jesse Barton.
Bringing home well-deserved second place medals are Colton Musselman, Ricky Wilcox, Nolan Black, Rhett Adair, and Tazz Robinson. Rounding out the medal winners is Caleb Bailey, who earned a fourth place medal and a chance to wrestle at the State Tournament. Ivan Rodriguez also wrestled for the Bucks. Rodriguez worked hard throughout the tournament and wrestled well, but fell short of qualifying for state.
The 13 Buckaroo wrestlers in the finals built a strong lead throughout the day by earning all but three of their wins by fall.
CJ Cordasco set the tone for the remainder of the tournament with Monticello’s first win, a pin less than a minute into the match. The Buckaroo team followed the lead, with Adam Martinez earning a 25 second pin.
The rest of the team followed suit, with Black, Boyle, Cordasco, Steele, Beh, Martinez, Randall, Adair, Shupe, Barton and Robinson earning pins in the semi-final round and securing a spot in the finals. Coltan Musselman won by technical fall, along with a 9-3 win by Ricky Wilcox, and a 15-5 major decision by Nolan Black.
In the finals, David Boyle kept the crowd on the edge of their seats until the final second of the match. Boyle got an early takedown, and then held on for the remainder of the match to secure a 2-1 win in dramatic fashion.
Coltan Musselman and Ricky Wilcox were the next two to wrestle for the Bucks. Musselman tried a myriad of moves, but was unable to score and lost 6-0. Wilcox got behind by early, and two penalty points given to his opponent proved to be his downfall. Wilcox scored a reversal in the final seconds, but lost the match 4-2.
CJ Cordasco, Reed Steele, Gabe Beh, Adam Martinez and Chase Randall made it four in a row for the Bucks, giving the crowd lots of opportunity to stand up and cheer.
Cordasco dominated his opponent on the way to a 12-3 victory. Steele was behind 4-0 after two periods, but kept his composure and put his opponent on his back twice in the final period to win the match 6-4.
Beh earned an early lead in his match and kept his opponent from mounting a comeback in a 9-3 victory. Martinez was in a virtual tie late in the second period, when he escaped from the bottom, and put his man on his back for the win by fall with only 6 seconds left on the clock.
Randall got behind early, but escaped from being pinned. He came back in the second and wasted no time putting his man on his back, and earning the pin just 25 seconds into the period.
Nolan Black fought hard in his match, but was unable to score enough points in a heartbreaking 7-6 loss. On the positive side for Black, he tied the school record for reversals in a season at the Region Tournament.
Rhett Adair came out strong, but got thrown to his back. The officials stopped the match saying Adair has passed out and would not allow him to continue, despite his insistence that he had not lost consciousness.
Tyrel Shupe and Jesse Barton put the finals two wins in the books for the Bucks. Shupe looked strong and confident in his match, earning points every way possible, before turning his opponent in the third period for the win by fall.
Barton got taken down early, but obviously wasn’t happy with that circumstance, as he quickly reversed his opponent and pinned him early in the first period. Tazz Robinson was the final competitor for the Buckaroos and fought hard, but was unable to overcome his opponent resulting in a loss.
This week the Bucks travel to Utah Valley University in Orem, where they will compete for the 1A State Championship. Action begins on Friday at 9:30 a.m. and runs through Saturday, when the finals begin at 3 p.m.