Cherry Creek senior Kai Blake said he lost focus early in his 170-pound title match on Feb. 23 at the Class 5A state wrestling tournament at the Pepsi Center in Denver. Blake had to deal with a …
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Cherry Creek senior Kai Blake said he lost focus early in his 170-pound title match on Feb. 23 at the Class 5A state wrestling tournament at the Pepsi Center in Denver.
Blake had to deal with a bloody nose in the first period in the championship match against Grand Junction's Jay Skalecki and settled for second place after a narrow 3-2 setback.
“In the first period, I was bleeding and showed the refs that and I just wasn't paying attention to the match and kind of shot myself in the foot for that,”said Blake. “He's a good wrestler and he just kind of wore me out.”
Blake, who advanced to the finals with two technical wins and a pin, tried unsuccessfully in the closing minute of the match for a two-point takedown.
He finished the season with a 44-4 record.
“I feel great about the season,” he said. “Obviously it sucks to lose but I'm going to go on to college and push myself to go further and harder. I was happy with what I did. I know I was a good wrestler this year but there is more work to be done, obviously.
“Looking back, I will appreciate the season. My heroes also came up short. The Finesilvers (Josh and Matt) came up short their senior year.”
Josh and Matt Finesilver were runners-up their senior year at Creek and are now sophomores on the Duke wrestling team along with senior brothers Mitch and Zach.
Blake has signed a letter of intend to wrestle next year at Duke.
Arapahoe 195-pounder Charlie Fetterley and 285-pounder Jason Washington were podium finishers in sixth place. Fetterley was pinned in 2:42 by Osman Topuz of Eaglecrest in the fifth-place match and Washington lost a 9-5 decision to Casey Hudson of Fruita Monument in his bid to claim fifth place.
There were two champions from south metro-area schools in the 5A tournament and both were from Ponderosa, which was second in the team standings behind state champion Pomona.
Mosha Schwartz won the 126-pound title and 285-pounder Cohlton Schultz wrapped up an unbeaten 46-0 season by winning his fourth straight state championship as he defeated Legend's Colin Lavell in the title match.
Lavell and Blake were two of the runners-up from area schools, along with Ponderosa's Jason Mahler at 120 pounds, 132-pounder Randy Myers of Castle View, Douglas County 160-pounder Austin Kelchen and 182-pounder Jake Welch of Valor Christian.
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