Green River Star -

By Jack H. Smith
Staff Writer 

Three Wolves win state titles


Danna Flores

Cole Verner won his second straight state title last Saturday in Casper.

The Green River High School wrestling team had three individual champions and three second-place finishers to help lead them to a second-place finish at the 4A State Tournament in Casper.

The Wolves finished with 232.5 points and were only behind state champion Campbell County who ended with 249.5.

"As we have much of the year, we started pretty well and we just got better as the tournament went on going 10-3 in the placing matches," head coach Marshall Rhodes said. "We wrestled better than we have all year and that is what it takes to make a run, I am very happy with the effort they took to the mat."

Cyro Montoya, (106 pounds) Cole Verner (113 pounds), and Colton Hopkins (138) all won state titles. It was the second straight title for Verner who finished his senior season undefeated.

Nathan McCann (113), Chase O'Melia, and Shandon Welsh (145) all finished in second.

In total, Green River had 13 placers.

Caleb Nathan (106), Gage Byers (126), Austin Waters (152), Hunter Hanks (182) and Brendan Hopkins (195) all finished in third place.

Kole Case (152) and Jordan Tucker both finished in fifth place.

"Three state champions and 13 placers is a great accomplishment and we will hold our heads high, I am very proud of them all. One of our goals was to win a team title but we fell a bit short," Rhodes said.

Also competing in the state tournament for the Wolves but not placing in the top six were Jared Flores, Kaycee Cochrane, Eric Clingenpeel, Zack Orr, Edgar Alatorre, Blake Waite, James McCarter and Gabe Bunderman.

Rhodes said the program will be graduating some very productive seniors, they will be missed, but the rest of the team will continue to work and improve in the off season and they will see what next year brings.

"The challenge set before us as a small school in 4A is to get every wrestler to come out, work hard, and improve. Unfortunately we had some wrestlers from a year ago choose not to come back with their teammates and it hurt us, the program just can't afford that if we want to win championships," Rhodes said. "We need everyone that is capable to contribute and if we are able to do that we can bring a state wrestling title back to Green River."


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