Varsity wrestling takes regionals

The+Fossil+Ridge+wrestling+team+leaves+Legacy+High+School+after+the+tournament+concluded.+

Annabeth Sarbacker

The Fossil Ridge wrestling team leaves Legacy High School after the tournament concluded.

Annabeth Sarbacker

On February 15 and 16 the Fossil Ridge High School varsity wrestling team competed at the 5A CHSAA Regional Tournament hosted by Legacy High School. In order to qualify for the statewide tournament, wrestlers would have to place fourth or higher at this regional tournament. As a whole, the team finished in fifth place with 124.5 points. The individual wrestlers who placed were Ben Parker (third), Michael Bolduc (fourth), Cody Ginther (third), and Marshall Scott (fourth).

Annabeth Sarbacker
The varsity team members pairs off to wrestle each other for warm up.

 

In the 160 lb. weight class, junior, Ben Parker contributed twenty team points and won five out of his six matches over the course of the tournament. After working his way through the bracket, his final match was won by decision with a score of 3-2, landing him in third place.

 

As the only freshman on the varsity team, Michael Bolduc competed in the 126 lb. weight class. He won three out of his five matches, which earned the team fifteen points and led to his finishing of the tournament in fourth place.

 

Sophomore Cody Ginther competed in the 145 lb. weight class where he placed third and scored twenty team points. He won three out of his four matches, all of which ended in falls.

 

For many of the wrestlers, this tournament marked the conclusion of their time wrestling. Seniors Marshall Scott and Jackson Holloway were competitors in two out of the four wrestleback matches for their final chance to qualify for the state tournament.

Before this, Scott competed for the fifth place title in the 113 lb. weight class. With 26 seconds left in the first period of the match, he pinned his opponent to the mat with ease. Coming down from this high, Scott declared “this one I have to win” in reference to the upcoming wrestleback for fourth place. After the match drew a crowd of spectators around the final mat being used, he was victorious by decision with a score of 9-7. The results were met with cheering from his teammates as Coach Schlehuber marveled at wrestling being the “greatest sport ever.”

 

Prior to his own wrestleback match, Holloway had taken fifth place in the 170 lb. weight class. He won two out of his five matches, scoring 11 team points. His teammate, Ginther, paced the side of the mat as he summed up Holloway’s last chance to qualify for state as “so intense.” Coaches and wrestlers from other high schools had gathered as spectators to one of the remaining matches of the entire tournament.

 

With thirty seconds left in the third period the score was 5-4 and Holloway was in the lead. As the clock counted down, the referee called a two-point takedown, giving the Rocky Mountain wrestler the state tournament qualification. This match sparked an aggressive uproar from the crowd of various coaches as many deemed it invalid, but Holloway accepted the results with dignity.

The height of emotion and energy was immediately replaced by a gut-wrenching helplessness as the team gathered their belongings to exit the gym. This mirrored many of the other wrestlers that afternoon as the matches concluded. Some were emotional over their loses and tears were shed at this signaling the conclusion of their season.

Why is this sport so emotional? ”

— Cody Ginther

In reaction to this match, Ginther wondered aloud, “Why is this sport so emotional?” Although risky and combative, this sport is emotional by nature. To continually participate in a sport where you are in constant danger necessitates a profound devotion to the sport. Wrestling requires fierce participants who love the highs of triumphs while simultaneously being able to accept their defeats.

Their unwavering passion for this sport is apparent as they have dedicated an entire season to this final tournament with hopes of making it to the state tournament. Although some were devastated by this last Saturday, they will all be ready to support their teammates next weekend, when the team will be at the state tournament from February 21-23.