LAFAYETTE — Phil Downing has accomplished plenty in his short high school career.
The sophomore for third-ranked Broomfield wrestling has already won one Class 4A state title and is well on his way to a second. But there is an important piece of hardware the second-ranked 138-pounder is missing — a Top of the Rockies title.
After Friday’s opening rounds, the highly-touted tournament’s title might just be a matter of time for Downing. With two first-round pins, the Eagle had one of the Centaurus-based competition’s most dominant starts.
“I’m just really good on top,” said Downing, who finished fifth at the 2011 Top of the Rockies. “And in both of my matches I was just able to get on top and finish it off.”
Downing helped Broomfield escape the first day of the brutal tournament in the best position of any local team. But pushing four wrestlers through to Saturday’s 8:30 a.m. championship quarterfinals did little to keep the Eagles soaring in the team race.
Broomfield finished the opening day in 14th place with 38 points. Legacy was tied for 23rd with 28 points, and Centaurus was 27th with 23 points. The teams did not have enough firepower to keep up with what was essentially a two-horse race after the opening rounds.
Defending Nebraska Class A state champion Grand Island and defending Colorado 4A state champion Windsor were neck and neck coming out of the opening day. Grand Island had eight wrestlers move on in the championship brackets to grab first with 70 points. Windsor was just off the Islanders with seven championship-bracket wrestlers and 66 points.
Broomfield had the opportunity to keep pace with the title teams, with eight wrestlers making it past the opening round. But as Jonathan Stelling proved with his match, staying alive meant wrestling until the last move.
The Eagle senior had to earn a 13-11 win in overtime, with Isaac Garcia frustrating Stelling in the final moments of regulation.
“I got called for stalling when I was on top,” Stelling said. “It stunk and all and the match would have been better without it, but I knew I could get my shot in in overtime.”
Legacy also had nearly half of is wrestlers whither in the second round, with two of its six championship wrestlers falling. Despite the trouble the Lightning produced some striking wins, one costing the team’s cross-town rivals a wrestler.
Legacy’s eighth-ranked Skylar McWee won his second-round match when the 220-pounder injured Connor Eakes in the final 10 seconds of the second. McWee threw the sixth-ranked Broomfield wrestler, hurting the Eagle’s leg in the process.
Eakes attempted to soldier through what was at that point a scoreless match. But early in the third he withdrew.
“It looked like he landed straight on his knee on the move,” McWee said.
Centaurus had only one wrestler survive the opening rounds, with Alex Englebrecht proving he has all the right moves. The Centaurus 285-pounder came up with his fourth and fifth wins of the season off a pin and a decision.
But the Warriors had to take the valleys with the peaks. The team had three wrestlers lose in the second round, and one of the toughest to gut was Tyler Harrington’s. The Centaurus freshman kept pace with Daniel Carrillo, but could not find the final move against the New Mexico wrestler.
Rio Rancho’s 2011 third-place finisher kept the Warrior at bay with a takedown in the third period.
“I just couldn’t get anything working for me,” Harrington said. “But I still looking at keeping this going and finish this tournament up.”
Top of the Rockies Invite
At Centaurus HS
Team scores (Day 1 of 2) — Grand Island (Neb.) 70; Windsor 66; Grand Junction Central 55; Thompson Valley 53; Roosevelt 52.5; Palo Verde (Nev.) 52; Rocky Mountain 49; Alamosa 44.5; Rio Rancho (N.M) 44; Ponderosa 43.5; Pueblo South 43; Pomona 42; Brighton 41; Broomfield 38; Mountain Range 37.5; Green River (Wyo.) 35; Loveland 34.5; Fort Morgan 34; Arvada West 33.5; Cherry Creek 32.5; Valley 32; Omaha North (Neb.) 31; Denver East 31; Legacy 28; Greeley West 27; Prairie View 27; Centaurus 23; Arvada 20; Cheyenne Central (Wyo.) 20; Grandview 20; Fort Lupton 18; Kelly Walsh (Wyo.) 6.5.
LOCAL 1ST and 2ND ROUND RESULTS
106 — Drew Romero, Broomfield dec. Kyler Schmidt, Rocky Mountain 9-2; Andre Jaramillo, Centaurus dec. Alec Romero Prairie View 9-4; Donovan Cogil, Legacy, bye.
113 — Marcus Martinez, Pueblo South major, dec. Dylan Alvarez, Broomfied, 12-1; Andre Aragon, Centaurus pinned Tyler Stroup, Legacy 2:30.
120 — Dusty Sanchez, Grand Junction Central pinned Justin Rehienmer, Legacy 1:43; Zach Finesilver, Cherry Creek pinned Michael Quinn, Broomfield 1:46; Ricky Becker, Prairie View pinned Tristen Archuleta, Centaurus 5:10.
126 — Ben Weakland, Valley dec. Adam Otterson, Legacy 9-7; Jonathon Stelling, Broomfield major dec. Brandon Madril, Pomona 14-4.
132 — Mason Harms, Cherry Creek pinned Jay Holman, Legacy 5:12.
138 — Jace Lopez, Roosevelt pinned Brian Mooney :41; Josh Donkle, Windsor pinned Matt Wright, Centaurus :21; Phil Downing, Broomfield pinned Justin Cisneros, Cheyenne Central 1:14.
145 — Josh McLaughlin, Thompson Valley win by disqualification Damian David, Legacy; Tyler Harrington, Centaurus dec. Matt Ingve, Grandview 10-3; Mason Marick, Roosevelt dec. Zach Stodden, Broomfield 3-2.
152 — Nick Babcock, Broomfield pinned Jackson Wright, 3:23; Jesse Carlson, Legacy bye.
160 — Luke McAnich, Broomfield bye; Brandon Bertsch, Alamosa tech. Fall Theron Crawford, Centaurus 17-0.
170 — Austin Trujillo, Valley pinned Cody Southard, Legacy 1:08; Nick Garcia, Brighton major dec. Josh Medina, Broomfield 14-7.
182 — D.J. Zissimos, Broomfield, Broomfield bye.
195 — Standley Garcia, Loveland pinned Austin Harris, Broomfield 3:34; David Hebel, Legacy pinned Jose Ceballos, Grand Island (Neb.) 4:28.
220 — Skyler McWee, Legacy bye; Connor Eaks, Broomfield Bye.
285 — Logan Lyon, Legacy bye; Alex Englebrecht, Centaurus pinned Joshua Corral, Greeley West 5:27; Theo Robison, Broomfield bye.
106 — Drew Romero, Broomfield dec. Michael Ramirez, Pueblo South 4-0; Payton Tawater, Arvada West pinned Andre Jaramillo, Centaurus 1:34; Mitch Finesilver, Cherry Creek tech. fall Donovan Cogil, Legacy 16-1.
113 — Neff Malouff, Alamosa dec. Andre Aragon, Centaurus 8-3.
126 — Jonathon Stelling, Broomfield dec. Isaac Garcia, Cheyenne Central 13-11 ot.
138 — Phil Downing, Broomfield pinned Zac Miller, Valley 1:34.
145 — Daniel Carrillo, Rio Rancho dec. Tyler Harrington 5-4.
152 — Nick Babcock, dec. Francisco Marquez, Thompson Valley 4-1; Jesse Carlson, Legacy pinned Derick Padilla, Rocky Mountain :58.
160 — Ryan Siert, Brighton tech fall Luke Macanich, Broomfield 1:07.
182 — Caleb Brown, Grand Junction Central dec. D.J. Zissmos 7-0.
195 — Dwigth Howes, Arvada pinned Austin Harris, Broomfield : 54; David Hebel, Legacy pinned Jose Ceballos, Grand Island (Neb.) 4:35.
220 — Skyler McWee, Legacy win by default Connor Eakes, Broomfield.
285 — Tony Martinez, Rocky Mountain pinned Logan Lyons, Legacy; Alex Englebrecht, Centaurus dec. Theo Robison, Broomfield 3-2.