Soroco senior Dennis Morgan and Burlington's Mike Satterly battle in the 189-pound state wrestling championship final Saturday at the Pepsi Center in Denver. Satterly won 5-0.

Photo by Dave Shively

Soroco senior Dennis Morgan and Burlington's Mike Satterly battle in the 189-pound state wrestling championship final Saturday at the Pepsi Center in Denver. Satterly won 5-0.

Morgan, Iacovetto take state wrestling runner-up spots



Soroco senior Dennis Morgan and Burlington's Mike Satterly battle in the 189-pound state wrestling championship final, which Satterly won, 5-0.


Discovery Canyon's Nick Adams takes down Justin Iacovetto in the Class 2A 112-pound finals Saturday night, a feat only one other wrestler had accomplished prior to the final.


Soroco junior Justin Iacovetto receives his second-place award after falling to Discovery Canyon's Nick Adams in the Class 2A 112-pound finals Saturday night at the Pepsi Center in Denver.


Soroco senior Dennis Morgan takes home second place in the Class 2A 189-pound state wrestling championship final Saturday at the Pepsi Center in Denver, losing to Burlington's Mike Satterly, 5-0.

— The numbers were stacked in his favor.

In Justin Iacovetto's 26-match unbeaten streak leading up to Saturday night's 112-pound state championship title bout, the Soroco junior had only been taken down one time.


And not one spectator in the Pepsi Center - packed to the third-tier nosebleed seats with a record 18,569 fans - would've given a freshman from a K-9, first-year program (Colorado Springs' Discovery Canyon) a shot to take down Iacovetto, a two-time state podium finisher.

No one but Nick Adams and his coach, Ron Sukle.

Adams took Iacovetto down in the first minute of their Class 2A championship match, establishing a quick 2-0 lead. In the second period, Iacovetto regained his feet and swagger, moving ahead 3-2 on a reversal. Adams tried to attack low again, but Iacovetto escaped to tie it up at 4-4. Then 40 seconds into the final frame, Iacovetto had one more escape to take a 5-4 lead.

But seconds later, Adams struck again, earning two crucial - and winning - takedown points to go ahead 6-5. Then the longest 30 seconds of Iacovetto's season ticked away as teammates and family members screamed a string of moves, anything, to get that tying point - to no avail.

Adams was caught in the exit tunnel by a swarm of reporters, bright lights and TV camera crews, seeking to find out what it felt like to be the first-ever state champion in the history of what will one day become a high school.

"It feels amazing," Adams said. "There's no way to describe it."

"He did what he had to do," Sukle said. "He's had some tough matches here at the big show, and he came through."

In the opposite exit tunnel, Iacovetto was feeling less than amazing.

"There was so many key things, I could've had so many points," a distraught Iacovetto said. "I was just sloppy on my feet, I mean, that (match) was 2/3 of the times I've been taken down all year : it was a blast while it lasted."

All on the mat

Doug Gates can remember Dennis Morgan coming in as a sixth-grader to his junior high wrestling program. There was no greater reward for the Soroco head coach than seeing Morgan mature into the humble and stoic 189-pounder contending for a state title under the big top Saturday night.

"He knows how to handle it like a champ," Gates said. "He's a real sportsman - he even smiles when he loses."

Morgan could only grin and bear the weight of loss in what he knew would be the final match of his high school wrestling career, falling 5-0 to talented Burlington sophomore Mike Satterly.

From the beginning, it wasn't the championship final match-up Morgan was looking for.

He wanted another crack at his familiar rival, Coy Letlow. But Satterly had other plans there, too, eliminating Letlow in the seminfinals.

Morgan could tell that the match would be decided on foot.

The quick, tall and lanky Satterly sauntered on his feet, dictating a faster-paced, conservatively wrestled match.

"I was just trying to control his head and control his hands - it's what we work on in Burlington," Satterly said.

Morgan grabbed Satterly's leg in the first period, but Satterly countered with a takedown. As the two circled in the second period, Morgan shot again, but again suffered another takedown.

Morgan shook Satterly's hand after the dust had settled and credited his opponent, who Morgan said he wouldn't be surprised to see become a three-time state champ.

"I'm tired," Morgan said after a long tournament, noting how proud he was of his teammates in what he called his best experience at state. "Pretty much all I could think of was that I can't leave anything behind. I gave the best I could."

Soroco finished 12th out of 46 competing Class 2A schools.


oldskoolstmbt 9 years, 2 months ago

GO SOROCO!!! dennis your awesome:) and justin is always a champ...great job fella's! and levi as know we love you!


sportzmama 9 years, 2 months ago

I was fortunate enough to be at the Pepsi Center on Saturday night (my son is part of the Berthoud team) and it was wonderful to be in the stands and to cheer on the Soroco and Hayden boys as well as Justin Mader on his podium appearance. I cheered loud and proud for these young men as this was quite a big deal - much more so than I would have imagined.

Wow if you've never attended this event, I encourage you to do so next year. There were over 18,000 people in the Pepsi Center all cheering for High School Wrestlers.

It was breathtaking to say the least when Tyler Graff of Loveland High School pinned his final opponent in less than 2 minutes to win his 4th State Championship. The entire Pepsi Center erupted in a standing ovation for this young man.

The entire experience was much more than I imagined it would be. CONGRATS TO ALL who persevered and made it down that tough road to State.


sportzmama 9 years, 2 months ago

My apologies Houston!! It's Houston Mader, not Justin. At any rate I cheered loud and proud for you kiddo - great job!


AmebaTost 9 years, 2 months ago

Maybe Soroco's coach could give Steamboat some pointers, our coach needs some help! Way to go Justin!


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