ARVADA -- Skylar McWee had two goals for Saturday -- wrestle aggressively and win. He succeeded on both counts.
The Lightning's quick and powerful 220-pounder came away with one of the Aravda West Invitational title matches' most dominant finishes. McWee turned in the tournament's only fall of the finals, catching seventh-ranked Jake Schoenberger in the opening seconds of the third period.
And while McWee was in control for the better part of the match, his final fireworks were stunning. McWee snapped like a trap, escaping, taking down and pinning the Fountain-Fort Carson wrestler in the opening 40 seconds of action in the period.
"It was the only pin tonight, so I had to be doing something tonight," he said.
The win was heartening for McWee, who is rebounding from a rough past month. But even though he came up with a title against a ranked wrestler at a tournament dubbed "Mini State" for its challenging brackets, McWee put his championship in context.
"The competition here wasn't great for my weight class," he said. "But it was strong enough for me to get back on track."
The 220-pounder's win was the high point in Legacy's otherwise rocky trip through the brackets. The senior was his team's only championship finalist and only one of two Lightning placers. Senior Connor Casady earned his second consecutive third-place finish at the invitational, winning a 5-1 decision over Jordan Brown of Grandview.
"I lost in my semifinal match, but I kept my head up and fought back," Legacy's 160-pounder said.
Casady was among a litany of Legacy wrestlers who had a rough run in the semifinals. The Lightning's Ryan Deakin lost an 8-0 major decision in the 106-pound semis and 182-pounder Luke Robinson had to forfeit his match to Brighton's third-ranked Joel Hernandez due to injury.
The match before, Robinson broke his hand and left almost immediately afterward to seek medical attention.
"We'll hopefully know Monday his situation," Legacy coach Mike Thompson said.
Injuries or not, Thompson believed his team got all it asked for and more out of an invitational that boasted some of the best teams in the state.
"This is a tournament you've got to show up for," Legacy coach Mike Thompson said. "If you don't show up then you're going to get taken advantage of."
And it does not get easier from here for the Lightning. The team's next stop is Friday and Saturday's Top of the Rockies at Centaurus, a multi-state tournament known as one of the toughest in Colorado. But the opportunity to come out on top there already has some Lightning licking their chops.
"I've never made it to the finals there," McWee said. "Hopefully today will help reach that goal this year."
Follow Elwood on Twitter @ElwoodKShelton.
ARVADA WEST INVITATIONAL
At Arvada West HS
Team scores -- Pomona 148.5; Greeley West 144; Ponderosa 142.5; Thompson Valley 140.5; Coronado 112.5; Rocky Mountain 106; Arvada West 80.5; Chaparral 72.5; Brighton 71; Legacy 65; Grand Junction 57; Fountain-Fort Carson 52; Bear Creek 51; Grand View 37; Grand Junction Central 32.
106 -- Trent Watason, Coronado, def. Anthony Garza, Greeley West, 5-4.
113 -- Jess Hankin, Coronado, def. Dylan West, Greeley West, 7-4.
120 -- Adrian Delacruz, Greeley West, def. Josh Rosales, Pomana, 6-3.
126 -- Emillo Martinez, Greeley West, def. P.T. Garcia, Bear Creek, 8-4.
132 -- Raymond Robledo, Pomona, def. Tanner Williams, Thomson Valley, 3-0.
138 -- Austin Marvel, Pomona, winner by injury default Jimmy Rothwell, Coronado.
145 -- Jacob Trujillo, Grand Junction, def. Torry Williams, Ponderosa, 4-1.
152 -- Kelton Good, Ponderosa, def. Ethan Wright, Pomona, 4-3.
160 -- Archie Colgan, Pomona, def. Francisco Marquez, Thompson Valley, 6-4.
170 -- Dylan Gabel, Ponderosa, def. Tony Silva-Bussey, Arvada West, 5-3 OT.
182 -- Joel Hernandez, Brighton, def. Corry Williams, Ponderosa, 3-1 OT.
195 -- Corky Phillips, Bear Creek, maj. dec. York Douglass, Ponderosa, 12-2.
220 -- Skylar McWee, Legacy, pin Jake Schoenberger, Fountain-Fort Carson, 4:46.
285 -- Austin Waterman, Greeley West, winner by forfeit Tony Martinez, Rocky Mountain.