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🔥🔥🔥 We'll take a team-by-team look at this past weekend's final day of regional wrestling

Welcome to another critical week of the winter season and a fresh, new edition of The Playbook! Did y
The Playbook
🔥🔥🔥 We'll take a team-by-team look at this past weekend's final day of regional wrestling
By The Playbook • Issue #59 • View online
Welcome to another critical week of the winter season and a fresh, new edition of The Playbook!
Did you enjoy regional wrestling tournaments this past weekend?
How about the opening round of the Patriot League district basketball tournaments?
Well, if so, things are going to get only more interesting this week with the state wrestling tournament and the conclusion of the district basketball tournament.
We’ll touch on both those events in today’s Playbook, with much more to come later this week!

Eaton's Ty Garnhart tries to pin Adam City's Adrian Iniguez in a 182-pound match Dec. 14 at the Northern Colorado Christmas Tournament at the Budweiser Events Center in Loveland. (Photo by Joshua Polson)
Eaton's Ty Garnhart tries to pin Adam City's Adrian Iniguez in a 182-pound match Dec. 14 at the Northern Colorado Christmas Tournament at the Budweiser Events Center in Loveland. (Photo by Joshua Polson)
The Lead
One Big Thing
The “big thing” this past weekend was regional wrestling, in which nine Patriot League programs contended for berths to this week’s state tournament.
And, among those nine programs, each of them accomplished at least one big thing in those regionals:
Brush Beetdiggers
No surprise here. Brush senior 170-pounder Wyatt Pfau (37-3) is back in the state tournament next week, and there’s no reason to think he won’t walk away with a second consecutive state title. He blitzed his three regional opponents via three technical falls, outscoring them 48-0 with just 3:28 of total times on the mat. (Bobby Fernandez)
Eaton Reds
For the second consecutive year, the Reds are a regional champion. Everyone may be competing for second behind overwhelming state title favorite Alamosa this week at the Pepsi Center. But, aside from the Mean Moose, perhaps no 3A team is better armed than Eaton with a team of 10 state qualifiers — almost all of which are contenders to earn spots on the championship podiums with top 6 finishes. (Fernandez)
Estes Park Bobcats
Estes Park has one lone state qualifier in sophomore 106-pounder Elijah Kitchen, but he could make some noise at state. This weekend, he lost in the regional semis on a 15-9 decision but won the third-place match via a 15-6 major decision to get an important win going into state. (Quinn Ritzdorf)
Platte Valley Broncos
Of the five Platte Valley state qualifiers, none is more dangerous than senior 182-pounder Colton Moore, who won the regionals on his home mat. What’s scary is, Moore won all his matches by pin until the championship match, which he won on an 8-2 decision. (Ritzdorf)
Platte Valley's Jayden Wertz grapples with Hinkley's Martin Renteria in a heavyweight match Dec. 14 at the Northern Colorado Christmas Tournament at the Budweiser Events Center in Loveland. (Photo by Joshua Polson)
Platte Valley's Jayden Wertz grapples with Hinkley's Martin Renteria in a heavyweight match Dec. 14 at the Northern Colorado Christmas Tournament at the Budweiser Events Center in Loveland. (Photo by Joshua Polson)
Resurrection Christian Cougars
There is a silver lining in everything. For the Cougars, it’s their only state qualifier, 132-pounder Eddie Lemos, who placed fourth at regionals. The one big thing… he is only a freshman. Resurrection Christian can build its team around this impressive young talent. (Ritzdorf)
Sterling Tigers
Sterling has to be the most overlooked team in all of 3A when it comes to wrestling (more on that in Wednesday’s issue). The Tigers have 10 wrestlers going to the state tournament, the same amount from Patriot League favorite, Eaton. Oh, and they tied Berthoud for first in team rankings at regionals with 200 points. (Ritzdorf)
Sterling's 113-pound sophomore Moises Rivas wrestles Berthoud's Dalton Williams in the regional championship Saturday at Platte Valley Middle School. Rivas won by a 16-4 major decision. (Photo by Quinn Ritzdorf)
Sterling's 113-pound sophomore Moises Rivas wrestles Berthoud's Dalton Williams in the regional championship Saturday at Platte Valley Middle School. Rivas won by a 16-4 major decision. (Photo by Quinn Ritzdorf)
Strasburg Indians
Despite Strasburg not sending any wrestlers to the state tournament, there is still hope for next year. The Indians lose only one senior, and they keep three of their best wrestlers, sophomore Spencer Nuttall (20-12), sophomore Blake Coombs (23-10) and junior Chad Sutherland (26-5). (Ritzdorf)
University Bulldogs
Talk about a feel good story. A year ago, University had no state qualifiers. Zero. Zilch. After regionals Saturday, the Bulldogs have three: senior 145-pounder Josh Anderson (22-11), sophomore 220-pounder Sebastian Cortez (13-15) and junior heavyweight Emanuel Munoz-Alcala (34-3). (Fernandez)
Valley Vikings
Valley junior 106-pounder Angel Rios (23-3) produced the big headline of the day. With her 8-0 major decision championship win over Strasburg’s Casteus Combs on Saturday, she became the first female champion in a boys regional tournament in Colorado history. (Fernandez)
Valley junior Angel Rios is recognized during the Class 3A Region 2 wrestling tournament on Saturday in Kersey. (Photo by Bobby Fernandez)
Valley junior Angel Rios is recognized during the Class 3A Region 2 wrestling tournament on Saturday in Kersey. (Photo by Bobby Fernandez)
Playbook Prime Performance
Boys’ Performer
Bobby: Brush senior 170-pounder Wyatt Pfau is exactly in the form he needs to repeat as a state wrestling champion. At the 3A Region 4 tournament in Pueblo this past Saturday, Pfau tore through his competition like a hot knife through butter, recording his three technical falls in short order.
Quinn: Ty Garnhart. Eaton’s 170-pound senior won the championship of his regional with a pin in 1:33. His overall record is 38-5.
Girls’ Performer
Bobby: This one’s a no-brainer. Valley’s Angel Rios made history, accomplishing something this past Saturday that no female had ever accomplished previously.
Quinn: Angel Rios. I know Bobby picked Angel also, but she deserves twice the shoutouts. Everyone at Platte Valley witnessed history as the 106-pound junior became the first girl to ever win a regional championship in the boys’ tournament. Standing Ovation
FREE: Hockey Tickets
We take a short break from our wrestling action, to let you know about how you can win free hockey tickets.
Fill out our reader survey (click here) and enter for a chance to win a pair of Colorado Eagles hockey tickets. The survey takes about 5 minutes to fill out.
We have decided to extend the survey until Tuesday at noon, at which time we will randomly select two lucky winners.
The winners will be able to pick between Saturday, March 2 at 7:05 p.m. against Tucson or Saturday, March 23 at 7:05 p.m. against Manitoba.
Link to audience survey: https://goo.gl/forms/ZII4wn12En3RxDzf1
The Patriot Best
Every Monday, Bobby and I will tell you the greatest thing we saw from the past week in the Patriot League. So without further adieu…our first edition of The Patriot Best.
Bobby: I was incredibly impressed by the focus level and competitiveness of the entire Eaton wrestling team at the 3A Region 3 tournament in Edgewater this past weekend. Leading after Day 1, the Reds didn’t have the best semifinal round, falling well behind Eagle Valley mid-afternoon Saturday. But, they regrouped — largely through consolations — and won the tournament going away, scoring 212.5 points to Eagle Valley’s 203.5.
That’s the type of resiliency that could lead Eaton to a high finish at state this week.
Quinn: The most intense wrestling match I have ever seen was the 220-pound championship at the Platte Valley regionals between Sterling’s Drew Book and Fort Morgan’s James Hochanadel.
After three rounds, the match went into overtime tied at 1. Take a look at what happened next:
Sterling's Drew Book's takedown win in overtime.
Sterling's Drew Book's takedown win in overtime.
Book’s takedown secured a 3-1 championship win, but more importantly the win helped Sterling tie Berthoud for first in the final team standings.
Patriot League Players of the Week
Vote on Twitter for your boy and girl Patriot League Player of the Week. The performances are from Feb. 10-Feb.17.
Boys Player of the Week
Tayt Chacon (University basketball) — The freshman scored 26 points and grabbed 11 rebounds in a 80-66 win over Valley on Tuesday.
Colton Moore (Platte Valley wrestling) — The senior won the 182-pound regional championship with an 8-2 decision. His record is 26-7.
Wyatt Pfau (Brush wrestling) — The senior won the 170-pound regional championship by technical fall in 1:27. His record is 37-3.
Dylan Yancey (Eaton wrestling) — The senior won the 132-pound regional championship with a pin in 5:12. His record is 39-5.
Vote for the boys Player of the Week on Twitter (click here).
Girls Player of the Week
Madelyn Malm (University basketball) — The senior scored 20 points and recorded two rebounds in the Bulldogs’ 62-24 win over Valley on Tuesday.
Elisabeth Perl (Resurrection Christian basketball) — Perl scored 23 points and grabbed 10 boards in a 63-30 win over Estes Park on senior night. Two days later, she records another double-double with 20 points and 11 rebounds in a 51-40 win over Longmont Christian on Thursday.
Resurrection Christian's Elisabeth Perl shooting a free throw against Estes Park on Tuesday. (Photo by Quinn Ritzdorf)
Resurrection Christian's Elisabeth Perl shooting a free throw against Estes Park on Tuesday. (Photo by Quinn Ritzdorf)
Angel Rios (Valley wrestling) — The junior won the 106-pound regional championship with an 8-0 major decision. She became the first girl in Colorado history to win a regional championship in a boys tournament.
Valley's Angel Rios in the 106-pound regional championship against Sterling's Casteus Combs. Rios won in an 8-0 major decision. (Photo by Quinn Ritzdorf)
Valley's Angel Rios in the 106-pound regional championship against Sterling's Casteus Combs. Rios won in an 8-0 major decision. (Photo by Quinn Ritzdorf)
Izzy Swanson (Liberty Common basketball) — The sophomore recorded a double-double with 14 points and 11 rebounds in a 48-19 win on Friday in the regional tournament.
Vote for the girls Player of the Week on Twitter (click here).
The Scorebook: Your daily results
Here is a breakdown of how the Patriot League teams fared in wrestling regionals:
3A Region 3 at Jefferson HS in Edgewater
Eaton Reds
» Team placement: First, 212.5 points
» 10 State qualifiers (individual placement, overall record): 106-pounder Alex Castaneda, fr. (4th, 21-7); 113-pounder Toby Gavette, sr. (3rd, 35-5); 138-pounder Dylan Yancey, sr. (1st, 39-5); 145-pounder Cael Jordan, soph. (4th, 17-16); 152-pounder Jackson Contreras, sr. (4th, 18-6); 170-pounder Ty Garnhart, sr. (1st, 38-5); 182-pounder Judson Church, sr. (3rd, 39-13); 195-pounder Logan Bean, jr. (3rd, 20-11); 220-pounder Tanner True, soph. (3rd, 32-10); Heavyweight Jeremy Murano, sr. (2nd, 32-4).
Eaton's Toby Gavette lifts Lewis-Palmer's Skyler Hunt off the ground in a 113-pound match Dec. 14 at the Northern Colorado Christmas Tournament at the Budweiser Events Center in Loveland. (Photo by Joshua Polson)
Eaton's Toby Gavette lifts Lewis-Palmer's Skyler Hunt off the ground in a 113-pound match Dec. 14 at the Northern Colorado Christmas Tournament at the Budweiser Events Center in Loveland. (Photo by Joshua Polson)
Strasburg Indians
» Team placement: 12th, 27 points
» State qualifiers: None
3A Region 2 at Platte Valley HS in Kersey
Estes Park Bobcats
» Team placement: 12th, 29 points
» One state qualifier: 106-pounder Elijah Kitchen, soph. (3rd, 29-4)
Platte Valley Broncos
» Team placement: Fifth, 140 points
» Five state qualifiers: 106-pounder Nicholas Dill, soph. (4th, 17-17); 120-pounder Orrin Jackson, fr. (3rd, 27-14); 160-pounder Josh Yancey, jr. (2nd, 24-9); 182-pounder Colton Moore, sr. (1st, 26-7); 195-pounder Jeremiah Garcia, soph. (1st, 21-11).
Resurrection Christian Cougars
» Team placement: 13th, 28 points
» One state qualifier: 132-pounder Eddie Lemos, fr. (4th, 25-16)
Sterling's Drew Book in the 220-pound regional championship against Fort Morgan's James Hochanadel on Saturday in Kersey. Book won 3-1 in sudden victory. (Photo by Quinn Ritzdorf)
Sterling's Drew Book in the 220-pound regional championship against Fort Morgan's James Hochanadel on Saturday in Kersey. Book won 3-1 in sudden victory. (Photo by Quinn Ritzdorf)
Sterling Tigers
» Team placement: Tied for first, 200 points
» 10 state qualifiers: 106-pounder Casteus Combs, fr. (2nd, 18-14); 113-pounder Moises Rivas, soph. (1st, 20-6); 126-pounder Zach Loft, sr. (1st, 36-2); 132-pounder Riley Bornhoft, soph. (2nd, 23-6); 138-pounder Isaac De Leon, sr. (2nd, 23-7); 152-pounder Traevonn Walton, sr. (4th, 23-14); 182-pounder Tate Green, sr. (4th, 20-17); 195-pounder Eleazer Chavez, sr.. (4th, 14-11); 220-pounder Drew Book, jr. (1st, 31-3); Heavyweight Austin Garcia, soph. (4th, 5-13). 
University junior heavyweight Emanuel Munoz-Alcala
University junior heavyweight Emanuel Munoz-Alcala
University Bulldogs
» Team placement: Seventh, 101 points
» Three state qualifiers: 145-pounder Josh Anderson, sr. (3rd, 22-11); 220-pounder Sebastian Cortez, soph. (4th, 13-15); Heavyweight Emanuel Munoz-Alcala, jr. (1st, 34-3)
Valley's Isaiah Rios wrestles Sterling's Isaac De Leon in the 138-pound regional championship Saturday in Kersey. Rios won in a 3-0 decision. (Photo by Quinn Ritzdorf)
Valley's Isaiah Rios wrestles Sterling's Isaac De Leon in the 138-pound regional championship Saturday in Kersey. Rios won in a 3-0 decision. (Photo by Quinn Ritzdorf)
Valley Vikings
» Team placement: Fourth, 177 points
» Eight state qualifiers: 106-pounder Angel Rios, jr. (1st, 23-3); 113-pounder Javan Valdez, soph. (3rd, 22-9); 120-pounder Daniel Matthews, jr. (2nd, 31-8); 126-pounder Noah Damian, jr. (3rd, 22-9); 132-pounder Zach Brown, soph. (1st, 33-5); 138-pounder Isaiah Rios, soph. (1st, 27-1); 152-pounder Colin Brown, fr. (2nd, 38-5); 160-pounder Jaziah Whaley, jr. (1st, 38-1)
3A Region 4 at Pueblo Central HS
Brush Beetdiggers
» Team placement: Second, 156.5 points
» Seven state qualifiers: 120-pounder Erick Urbina, jr. (4th, 21-10); 138-pounder Hunter Ludgate, jr. (4th, 16-14); 152-pounder Oswaldo Nunez, sr. (1st. 27-6); 160-pounder Chase Barnett, sr. (3rd, 13-6); 170-pounder Wyatt Pfau, sr. (1st, 37-3); 182-pounder Nick Wellen, jr. (2nd, 30-8); 195-pounder Thomas Mettlen, sr. (3rd, 27-13)
Valley junior Angel Rios
Valley junior Angel Rios
She's only getting started
Even though Valley junior Angel Rios has already achieved Colorado wrestling history, she is far from content.
With one of the top 4 seeds in this week’s state tournament, Rios has a legitimate chance of becoming the first ever female to earn a spot on the championship podium — with a top 6 finish — at the historically boys tournament.
“It’s pretty exciting, because it’s what I’ve worked for for the past 15 years,” Rios said of her regional championship Saturday.
This will be the 15th time a female has competed in the state tournament.
No girl has ever advanced past the second round of the winners bracket or fared better than 2-2 in the tournament.
Also, during her history making day Saturday, Angel and her younger brother, Isaiah Rios, became the first brother-sister duo to win regional championships.
Tuesday's district basketball tournament matchups
Second round
Boys
No. 8 Frontier Academy at No. 1 Sterling, 6 p.m.
No. 5 University at No. 4 Eaton, 7 p.m.
No. 6 Strasburg at No. 3 Platte Valley, 7 p.m.
No. 7 Valley at No. 2 Resurrection Christian, 7 p.m
Girls
No. 8 Estes Park at No. 1 Eaton, 5:30 p.m.
No. 6 Sterling at No. 3 Resurrection Christian, 5:30 p.m.
No. 7 Liberty Common at No. 2 Platte Valley, 5:30 p.m.
No. 5 Brush at No. 4 University, 6 p.m.
Coming up in Wednesday's edition of The Playbook
  • Check out a team-by-team preview of the state wrestling tournament, with The Playbook’s predictions.
  • We’ll tell you how the Sterling wrestling program is quickly shedding its sleeper status.
  • Plus, we’ll have the latest results from the Patriot League district hoops tournaments.
Thanks for reading! See you Wednesday!
Bobby Fernandez, The Playbook Publisher
Quinn Ritzdorf, The Playbook Reporter
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