DENVER Chance Randolph admitted he was nervous before his third-place match.
The nerves may have bothered him early in the match, but by the end, the determined Dove Creek freshman had himself a bronze medal in the 113-pound division of the Class 2A State Wrestling Championships Saturday.
Randolph may have been nervous but he let his wrestling speak for him.
Trailing 7-2 to Stetson Loader, a Baca County sophomore, Randolph surmounted a stirring rally, storming back in the final period to take the match 10-9.
Chance came down here and wrestled his tail off, Dove Creek coach Shane Baughman said. He really should have been in the finals.
Baughman questioned a stall call that resulted in a penalty point in the semifinals when Randolph had a 2-1 lead late in the match. The call helped Miguel Torres of Burlington come away with a 6-2 overtime victory.
But Randolph rebounded with a pin to get into the third-place match.
Four Dove Creek wrestlers found their way onto the podium Saturday.
Joining Randolph as medal winners were Cole Baughman, who placed second at 120 pounds, Dalton Randolph, Chances brother, placed fifth at 138, and Chance Johnson placed sixth at 182.
Nick Jones (106) and heavyweight Tyson Smith each won one match in the tournament.
Tyler Ebberts (132), Wyatt Applin (160) and Jerod Galyean (220) also competed in the state tournament.
Paonia, which qualified all 14 of its wrestlers for the state tournament, won the Class 2A team title. Freshman Jesse Reed (113) was Paonias lone state champ.