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The decorated senior class from Longmont wrestling -- from left, Jaime Ramos-Vega, Ivan Wolf, Drake Greeott, Lane Olsen, and Tommy Nichols -- are geared up for their final state tournament together.
Lewis Geyer / Longmont Times-Call
The decorated senior class from Longmont wrestling — from left, Jaime Ramos-Vega, Ivan Wolf, Drake Greeott, Lane Olsen, and Tommy Nichols — are geared up for their final state tournament together.

LONGMONT — Almost every prep team relies on its seniors to carry the load in competition and in practice. But every once in a while a special group of seniors comes along that takes that leadership responsibility to another level.

The 2014 senior class on the Longmont High School wrestling team is one of those groups. Each of the five seniors has his own story, weight class and wrestling style.

However, all the Trojans seniors share a common bond that has helped them come together as a unit and reach the Class 4A state tournament in their final season together.

“All our seniors, we’re all right around the same weight, we all train and practice together and that’s why we’re all going to state,” Trojans 145-pounder Lane Olsen said. “We’ve supported each other all the way we’ll continue to do that. Some of us are going for the first time and some have been a few times but we’re all going for medals and we’ll all be helping each other.”

Along with 182-pound teammate Tom Nichols, Olsen will be making his first appearance at the state tournament on Thursday. Both newcomers will be traveling to the Pepsi Center with teammates Jaime Ramos-Vega, Drake Greeott and Ivan Wolf, each of whom qualified for his third state tournaments this season.

Ramos-Vega and Greeott both took home sixth-place medals in 2013 and Nichols and Olsen will draw strength from their teammates’ experience. Ramos-Vega will draw strength from his own, having qualified each year since picking up the sport during the 2011-12 season.

“This is just my third year wrestling but I fell in love with it and I want to make the most of my last year,” said Ramos-Vega (38-4), who won the 195-pound title at the 4A Region 3 tournament. “I’ve learned not to hesitate and to be confident in myself. When I went my sophomore year, my attitude was I couldn’t beat nobody. When I saw how the seniors before me wrestled like it was their last match, it made me want to give it my best my senior year so I can live without regret.”

A four-year varsity wrestler with 112 career wins, Greeott has been wrestling longer than Ramos-Vega. But the Trojans’ 160-pounder is every bit as determined to make the most of what he believes could be his final wrestling meet ever.

A four-year varsity wrestler, Greeott (34-10) has already set a new Longmont High career takedown record of 313. He’s left his mark on the record books. He’s looking to win one more medal before he’s done.

“It’s another chance to place or even win,” Greeott said. “It’s bigger this year because it’s my senior year. I don’t know if I’m going to wrestle in college or not so I want to end with a big bang.”

Having made it this far is already a career milestone for both Olsen and Nichols. Whatever they win now could be considered a bonus, but that’s not how they’re looking at it.

Olsen (33-11) and Nichols (33-12) both want to join their teammates on the podium and win as many matches as they can to score team points for the Trojans. Personally, Nichols has some pent-up energy to let loose after falling short of state while wrestling at 2A Lyons High School his freshman and sophomore seasons, and missing the 4A meet with an injury last season.

“I wasn’t good enough my freshman and sophomore year and I dislocated my elbow my junior year, and that was the year I knew I was going,” Nichols said. “Going to state is big for me but just going isn’t good enough. The goal has always been a state medal so that’s what I’m after.”

At 152 pounds, Wolf (39-5) enters the state tournament as perhaps the Trojans’ hottest wrestler. Until he lost in the regional final on Saturday, Wolf had won his last 24 matches. He also set a new single-season school takedown record with 152 and reached second on the all-time school pins list with 71 in his career.

Despite his well-deserved accolades, Wolf said he’s still missing a state medal, which would be the crowning jewel of his collection.

“My best friend is Forrest Wetterstrom and he broke the takedown record last year. I wanted to break his takedown record and I did,” Wolf said. “It was a good building block and now all that’s left is the state tournament.”

The current Trojans senior group has placed third at regionals the past two seasons, which Longmont hadn’t done since 2004, and has won two team titles at the local showcase, the Gary Daum Classic. Whatever happens at the state tournament, Trojans head coach Adam Keiswetter said his senior group has already proven itself to be a special one.

“I’m really proud of the group we have,” Keiswetter said. “It’s been awesome to be able to coach this class all the way from freshmen to seniors. They will go down as one of the best classes ever in the Longmont High School wrestling program.”

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