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  • Connor Ventura, left, of Broomfield takes down Elmer Baca of...

    Cliff Grassmick / Staff Photographer

    Connor Ventura, left, of Broomfield takes down Elmer Baca of Prairie View during Saturday's regional tournament at Legacy. More photos:

  • Matt Hebel, right, of Legacy, grabs the leg of Jimmy...

    Cliff Grassmick / Staff Photographer

    Matt Hebel, right, of Legacy, grabs the leg of Jimmy Weaver of Coronado during an 182-pound match Saturday at Legacy.



BROOMFIELD — The look on Pat DeCamillis’ face told you everything you needed to know about how he felt after the conclusion of the Class 5A Region 3 wrestling tournament at Legacy.

“This was probably the best regional tournament by a team that I have had, ever,” said the three-time state champ, who has been coaching for well over 10 years. “Every single one of them competed and is was impressive to watch.”

When the smoke cleared, the Eagles capped off their big day by sending six wrestlers to next week’s state tournament at the Pepsi Center and taking home a little hardware in the process. Broomfield, on the strength of Mason Watt’s victory at heavyweight scored 190 points to overtake Poudre for second place behind only Legacy’s 242.

The Eagles sent three wrestlers to the top of the podium.

Senior Brandon Tyson faced a familiar foe in the 113-pound final when he drew Coronado’s Stephen Debalko. The two met at Arvada West and Tyson had his way with the defending state champ from Widefield (he transferred to Coronado) there too.

On Saturday he was up 3-0 after two periods and was in complete control. Another slide-by take-down and cradle resulting in four near fall points accounted for the lopsided 9-1major decision.

“I knew he was going to go for those low shots and his coach even showed him when I went down on that low knee to just power through me,” Tyson said. “He got to my legs a couple of times, but thankfully my defense was good enough.”

At 170 pounds, Connor Ventura continued his mission to the podium with an impressive pin fall victory of Prairie View’s Elmer Baca. Eagles heavyweight mason Watt capped the night off with a pin over longtime cross-town rival Tui Fa’amausili of Legacy.

Also heading to state for DeCamillis team are Presley Madril (106), Zack Walker (195) and Noah Dohm (220).

“You have to wrestle your best here, because if you don’t, you don’t get to the state tournament,” DeCamillis said. “Obviously next week you still have to have something left in the tank, and I’m not saying your just trying to hang on, but you’ve got to get down there first.”

Legacy, ranked No. 2 by On the Mat, were impressive all the way around. They crowned four regional champions and will send seven to state.

“We’ve got seven quality guys going downtown and they have been working hard and some of them are seniors that have been working hard since they were freshmen,” Legacy coach Mike Thompson said. “We should do well downtown.”

Ryan Deakin (138), Matt Hebel (182) and Nolan Funk (195) were all expected to win regional crowns, but the stunner came at 152 pounds from Drian Hays.

The Legacy sophomore had twice lost to Poudre’s No. 3 Diego Calderon this season and was on the brink of going down for a third time. Calderon was up 7-0 and appeared to have Hays on his back, but Hays managed to get a leg free had Calderon on his back — and it appeared he didn’t realize in time — and the referee slapped the mat for Hays.

“In my mind I was going through a little mini crisis, and being down that much kind of got in my head a little bit,” said Hays, who later admitted he was stunned by the victory in his favor. “But I had an a-ha moment and I though of something to do and it worked.”

Legacy, who will be in contention at for some hardware behind the favorites from Pomona, will also send Devan Cogil (106), Trent Blazon (120) and the aforementioned Fa’amausili (285).

Fairview also will be represented at state. The Knights wills send 160-pounder Dimitri Brown and Caleb Bergeson (170) to the Pepsi Center.

Brown went triple overtime in his third place match against Legacy’s Aidan Funk before winning by ultimate tiebreaker 3-2. he is pleased to be heading back to state on a winning note.

“It feels great to be going to state, it was a tough tournament with a lot of tough kids,” said Brown, who had his head wrapped to help stop the bleeding nose that was limiting his breathing. “We are all just wrestling and anyone can win on any given day and that’s all that really matters.”

Jon Yunt: or


At Legacy

Team scores — Legacy 242, Broomfield 190, Poudre 186, Brighton 174.5, Rocky Mountain 170, Coronado 126, Prairie View 109, Fort Collins 74, Loveland 72, Fossil Ridge 57, Horizon 48, Bear Creek 47.5, Abraham Lincoln 41, Fairview 38, Boulder 8.

Championship matches

106 — Johnny Sanchez, Brighton dec. Devan Cogil, Legacy, 9-7 OT.

113 —
Brandon Tyson, Broomfield major dec. Stephen Debalko, Coronado, 9-1.

120 —
Job Greenwood, Poudre pinned Trent Blazon, Legacy, 3:48.

126 —
Jackson Huffman, Horizon dec. Owen Lamb, Poudre, 8-4.

132 —
Jacob Greenwood, Poudre won by injury default over Seth Sanchez, Abraham Lincoln.

138 —
Ryan Deakin, Legacy pinned David Bekkedahl, Poudre, 2:31.

145 —
Bradley Lehmann, Prairie View dec. Chase McElhany, Coronado, 6-4 OT.

152 —
Drian Hays, Legacy pinned Diego Calderon, Poudre, 3:38.

160 —
Nicholas Cote, Coronado pinned Jake Hansen, Rocky Mountain, 1:38.

170 —
Connor Ventura, Broomfield pinned Elmer Baca, Prairie View, 3:52.

182 —
Matt Hebel, Legacy dec. Jimmy Weaver, Coronado, 7-4.

195 — Nolan Funk, Legacy pinned Ian Helwick, Brighton, 3:50.

220 — Charles Dunkelman, Loveland pinned Tanner Aitken, Brighton, :58.

285 —
Mason Watt, Broomfield pinned Tui Fa’amausili, Legacy, 3:49.

Local third-place matches

106 —
Presley Madril, Broomfield dec. Evan Shell, Rocky Mountain, 4-2.

160 —
Dimitri Brown, Fairview won by ultimate tiebreaker over Aidan Funk, Legacy, 3-2.

170 —
Garrett McCullar, Poudre tech fall Caleb Bergeson, Fairview, 16-1 (4:10).

195 —
Zack Walker, Broomfield won by ultimate tiebreaker over Brendon Woolsey, Prairie View, 3-2.

220 —
Noah Dohm, Broomfield dec. Weston Mayer, Poudre, 4-3.

Local wrestleback matches

132 —
Josh Boulton, Fort Collins dec. Preston Renner, Broomfield, 6-1.

138 —
Kyle Smart, Fossil Ridge dec. Christian Lofton, Broomfield, 7-4.

160 —
Brennan Ratcliff, Bear Creek dec. Aidan Funk, Legacy, 12-5.

220 —
Weston Mayer, Poudre pinned Derek Coleman, Legacy, 2:47.