Heading into the Panther Classic in Farmington on Dec. 16, Dolores High School wrestlers knew that they would have their work cut out from them.
Standing across the mat were grapplers from some of the Four Corners most competitive wrestling programs, including Piedra Vista High School, Farmington High School and Bloomfield High School.
Undeterred by the quality of their competition however, Dolores wrestlers competed well during dual matches against Kirtland, Piedra Vista, Grants and Shiprock.
Leading the way individually for Dolores was 113-pound standout Cameron Chavez, who opened with a 13-8 decision victory over Kirtland’s Miguel Prettyboy and also registered pin victories over Grants’ wrestler Chloe Hayes and Shiprock wrestler Savannah Pettigrew.
Also putting forth solid performances for the Bears was Zander Eichner, who finished two of his three matches in the 120-pound division before moving up to the 126-pound weight class in his final match and losing by pin to Shiprock’s Cauy Ute.
Senior Austin Hackney easily pinned two of his first three opponents at 126-pounds before registering a forfeit victory against Shiprock in the 132-pound division.
Cael Schmittel finished 2-2 in the 160-pound division after two forfeit victories, David Schmittel finished 1-3 in the 170-pound division, and Bryan Escarcega finished 2-2 in the heavyweight division with both of his victories coming by way of forfeit.
Dolores’ loan dual victory as a team came against Shiprock by a score of 24-21 in what was the championship dual in the Copper bracket.
With the early part of their season now behind them, Dolores grapplers will take a brief break for Christmas before returning to the practice mat in anticipation of a tournament in Pagosa Springs, which will take place on Jan. 6.