Final seedings won't be announced until coaches arrive at Palisade High School, but things are shaping up nicely for the Soroco wrestling team and several of Hayden's wrestlers.
The Rams are taking just four wrestlers to the Class 2A Region 1 tournament, but all will be seeded in the top five with hopes of a state tournament berth Saturday night.
Joel Schlegal (103 pounds) likely will be seeded third. Levi Gonzales (112) probably will be seeded fifth. Matt Iacovetto (152) should stay as a second seed, and Shaye Bruggink (160) likely will be seeded fifth, Soroco coach Doug Gates said.
The top four finishers in each weight class advance to the state tournament.
Hayden's Robert Culver (215) will be a No. 2 seed, and Randy Muhme (275) likely will be a No. 4 seed, Tigers assistant coach Leif Jacobsen said.
Regional seeds are based on overall win percentage and head-to-head results against regional opponents.
Hayden's Aaron Haskins (171) and Matt Marchbanks (189) may garner No. 5 seeds in their respective weight classes. Many of the Tigers' other wrestlers have lower seeds, but the experience of wrestling at regionals should be valuable to the underclassmen.
Assuming the seedings hold true, several Routt County wrestlers are on the bubble to make the 2005 Colorado State Wrestling Championships when the Region 1 tournament begins today at Palisade.
"We have to keep wrestling like we have been," Gates said. "All the kids I'm taking will have to wrestle well, but they've all got a good shot of going to state."
Soroco freshman Dennis Morgan (215) received some unfortunate news this week when he was advised to end his season right before the regional meet. Morgan had been wrestling with what turned out to be a bulged disc, and doctors recommended he focus on healing and completely recovering rather than wrestle and risk blowing it out this weekend.
Soroco already has lost senior Whit Gates to a season-ending injury.
The Region 1 meet will begin this afternoon with weigh-ins and the opening rounds before resuming Saturday morning with the consolation and championship rounds.
In addition to Soroco and Hayden, the following teams are in Class 2A Region 1: Dolores, Dolores County, Grand Valley, Mancos, Meeker, North Park, Norwood, Nucla, Paonia, Rangely and West Grand.
The region is one of the toughest -- if not the toughest -- in the state, and teams such as Meeker and Paonia should figure heavily in the team race at the state championships, which will be held Feb. 10 to 12 at the Pepsi Center in Denver.
--To reach Melinda Mawdsley call 871-4208
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