Bayfield started with a win Thursday night and never really slowed down.
The Bayfield High School wrestling team earned a 39-26 home win against Monte Vista in a 3A Intermountain League dual-meet. Bayfield scored three wins via first-period pins, including the night’s opening match at 113 pounds, where Dylan Pickering defeated Monte Vista’s Damian Casanova with a fall only 1 minute, 41 seconds into the match.
The dual was made even more special with a “Patriotic Night” theme, as the Bayfield wrestlers wore special singlets and all veterans received free admission.
“I thought we looked really good,” BHS head coach Roy Westbrook said. “I think having a theme night pumped everybody up. We started out at 13s with a win, and everybody followed suit there. We wrestled tough, whether the matches lasted one period or three.”
After Grimwood’s strong performance gave BHS an early 6-0 lead, Monte Vista tied it when Nick Garcia pinned Bayfield’s Colby Baker with 29 seconds to go in the first period. Bayfield did not have a wrestler at 126 pounds, and Monte Vista took a 12-6 lead thanks to forfeit points.
But Bayfield began its quick climb back at 132 pounds, as Trey McKee earned a hard-fought 8-6 decision against Jesus Vasquez. That cut Monte Vista’s lead to 12-9.
“In the first, he came out and really kind of looked like a freshman, and I was like, ‘Oh no,’” coach Westbrook said. “But, man, he pulled it out. He fought back and fought hard and found a way to get a win. I couldn’t be happier with him.”
Bayfield’s Garrett Beebe then earned a free pass at 138 pounds, and Bayfield took a 15-9 lead it wouldn’t relinquish. Jake Sandrey pinned Monte Vista’s Ted Pacheco with nine seconds to go in the second period to win his 145-pound match, and Bayfield’s lead grew to 21-12.
At 152 pounds, Bayfield’s Lane Grimwood found himself in a tough match with Monte Vista’s Levi Trujillo. Grimwood lost a tight 6-5 decision.
“That was Lane’s first time back on the mat in a month,” coach Westbrook said. “To go through three periods and lose by only one shows a lot of heart out there.”
The Wolverines shuffled their roster a bit with Grimwood’s return, and Jason Schneider jumped up a weight class to 160 pounds. Schneider had no trouble against a bigger man and earned a pin against Jason Ross in 1:11.
“I think a big match for us was Schneider,” coach Westbrook said. “He came out and wrestled basically two weight classes up and got a first-period pin. It’s really awesome.”
After Schneider’s win, Bayfield led 27-15. Monte Vista cut that deficit to 27-20 at 170 pounds, as tough senior Jacob Chavez beat Bayfield’s Shane Moore 16-0 for a technical fall.
Neither team had a wrestler at 182 pounds, and Bayfield’s John Foutz won a forfeit victory at 195 pounds, as did Daniel Westbrook for BHS at 220 pounds. The teams both were without a heavyweight.
Monte Vista’s Josiah Ramos earned a forfeit win at 106 pounds, and Bayfield rolled up the mat with a 39-26 victory.
Next up for the Wolverines is a trip Saturday to Page, Arizona.
“Page is always big,” coach Westbrook said. “There are other out-of-state schools, some Arizona schools that are tough and usually 20-plus teams at the tournament. For us to win tonight and most of the kids get a win, it’s a confidence booster and sets us up to be in good position going to Arizona.”