Granado calms down, claims victory
Chugiak’s Jake Granado won the 182-pound weight class at the Bob Bailey Memorial Tournament at Chugiak High on Saturday, Nov. 12.
Granado pinned South's Robert Lopez in the second round of their bout. Lopez was the only one of three wrestlers to make it past the first round with Granado, who won his first two matches by fall in a combined 2 minutes, 11 seconds.
Lopez seemed to frustrate Granado early in the match, and the Chugiak junior said he had to find a way to control his emotions in order to get the pin.
“It’s very important,” to stay calm, he said. “The coaches say when I get too angry or excited I turn green and all my technique goes away.”
Granado, who made state but didn’t place last season, said he’s hoping to make a much bigger impact on the Class 4A field this year.
“I want to go all the way,” he said.
Chugiak finished sixth overall, while Eagle River was 11th in the 18-team tournament. Chugiak coach Tom Huffer, Jr. said several wrestlers on each team were unable to compete because of a lack of early-season practice time. The Class 4A season only began two weeks ago.
Mustangs senior Garrett Morrison made the finals at 195 pounds before falling to defending state champion Stephen Ellis of Service.
Other placewinners for the Mustangs included Jacob Wenzl (3rd at 138), Alex Medeiros (4th at 195), Kody Trombley (4th at 285) and Robert Huffer (6th at 152).
For Eagle River, Logan Sheets finished fourth at 170 pounds, Zach Luff was fifth at 126, Kevin Gilliland was fifth at 220 and Nate Gorski was sixth at 170.
Now that the season is underway, wrestlers won’t have much time to rest. Chugiak and Eagle River opened their CIC regular-season dual meet schedule on Wednesday, Nov. 16. Results were unavailable as of press time. Chugiak will attend the Lancer Smith duals today in Palmer and the Lancer Smith tournament, also in Palmer, on Friday and Saturday (Nov. 18-19). Eagle River, meanwhile, will fly to Kodiak for the Joe Floyd tournament Friday and Saturday.