|East Carbon wrestling coarch Jeff Hunt stands between Curtis Huitt and Bryant Bridge, the two young men from the school who placed at the 1A state championship on Feb. 11. Huitt placed second in the 145 lb. class and Bridge took third in the 189 lb. class.|
It hasn't been a stellar year for East Carbon's sports programs; neither the baseball or volleyball teams made it to state, the girls basketball team only won one game and the boys team, well they are still trying to find that elusive "W."
But for the wrestlers at the little school located in Sunnyside, it was a pretty good year despite the fact they had very few kids come out for the team.
"We started out with seven kids at the beginning of the season and ended up with three," said wrestling coach Jeff Hunt on Tuesday night. "Two of those guys qualified for state and the third came very close."
But both Curtis Huitt and Bryant Bridge did more than qualify, they placed at the state meet and placed fairly high.
Huitt took second place in the 145 lb. class, and knows he could have been first but said he was too impatient. He lost first place to Glenn Woods of Duchesne.
"I tried to pin him instead of just wrestling like I should have," he said. "I pinned him during the region tournament so I was just looking to do that again."
Bryant Bridge also placed, taking third in the 189 lb. class. He won his final match against Travis Johnson, also of Duchesne.
"I just beat him on points, 7-5," said Bridge. He took the patient route.
This was Hunt's first year coaching the kids at East Carbon and he was impressed.
"I have to say that the kids we had placed well at tournaments all year and they beat a lot of wrestlers from much bigger schools," said Hunt. " I liked these guys dedication. We lost a few kids during the season but these two and Travis Hepworth stuck it out."
Hunt said what he needed was more bodies so the kids could have someone to wrestle with in practice.
"Yeah they've been beating up on me all year," he said. All three of them laughed about that.
As a team the Vikings placed eighth in the state in 1A with 22 points.
Hunt is actually planning on the future though, because he knows from experience that if he holds on for a few years he may very well have those bodies.
That's because at the Moab Little Devil Wrestling Touranment last Saturday, where Hunt, Sam Sanderson, and Kyel Abeyte acting as coaches took the East Carbon Bantam team 25 kids won some big awards. Most of the teams that were there were from the western slope in Colorado.
First place winners included Cole Hunt, Justin Hepworth, Kahil Hunt, Brandee Mast, Colton Sanderson, Duke Curtis, and Triton Abeyta.
Taking second places at the tournament were Brendan Hepworth, Mario Curridine, Emilo Gonzales, Randy Curtis, and J. Boone Hunt.
The group that took third places included Cody Hunt, Joseph Gallucci, Gabe Drage, Josh Larson, Dylan Maynes, Bradlee Chatterton, Taylon Abeyta and Dakota Curtis.
Fourth place finishers were Buddy Lemon, Vincent Archuleta, Chandle Boyd, Tyson Torrez and Caleb Sorenson.