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Wrestling: Four-timer Vince Cornella named BoCoPreps.com wrestler of the year

Monarch senior makes history as only second area athlete to win four

Monarch High School senior wrestler Vince ...
Tim Hurst/Staff Photographer
Monarch High School senior wrestler Vince Cornella poses for a portrait on Tuesday, March 2, 2021, at Monarch High School in Louisville, Colo.

As an up-and-coming young grappler, Vince Cornella wrestled around and admired future four-time Colorado state champions like Cohlton Schultz, Andrew Alirez and Jacob Greenwood.

Now he’s one of them.

As a senior, Cornella left the Colorado high school boys wrestling state championships as a champion for the fourth and final time in his career. In doing so, Monarch’s shining star became the 29th wrestler in Colorado preps history to win four state titles in his career.

For cementing his place among the best to ever do it in the Centennial State, Cornella has been named the BoCoPreps.com boys wrestler of the year for the second straight season.

“Overall, I’m just grateful I got to compete this year,” Cornella said. “There was a lot of uncertainty about whether or not we were going to be able to wrestle at all. It’s a great honor to join that group because I grew up with a few of those guys, so it’s a really big deal to me.”

After not wrestling at all during abbreviated Season B regular season, Cornella blitzed his way through yet another postseason. Competing at a new state tournament host arena, the Southwest Motors Events Center, he pinned all three of his Class 5A 138-pound opponents at state to claim his fourth gold. He also led the Coyotes to a third-place team finish, which is the best in the program’s history.

Only a couple weeks removed from his historic moment, Cornella is already in New York training to eventually compete in the U-20 Junior Worlds Team Trials. Following what figures to be a big summer for Cornella, he’ll head off to join an excellent program at Cornell University.

“I’m really excited,” Cornella said. “Getting to test myself at another level wrestling in college will be great. I think there is a great coaching staff and environment at Cornell that will allow me to be the best I can as a wrestler. I can’t wait to continue reaching new milestones and trying to push myself to new heights.”

As a prep wrestler, Cornella won his first title as a 106-pound freshman. His second title came at 113 pounds his sophomore season. He won at 126s for his third and capped his high school career with a 138-pound title on March 13. He finished with a 123-9 career record at Monarch.

Constantly pushing himself is what allowed Cornella to achieve all the things he did during high school, and veteran Monarch coach Ezra Paddock said it has been a pleasure to help him get there. But for Cornella, who is seemingly never satisfied no matter what he does, Paddock believes the best is yet to come.

“Having time to reflect on what Vince did, I feel lucky,” Paddock said. “I feel lucky for getting to coach him. As good as he is, he’s one of those guys that always makes his teammates better. It may sound silly but as proud as I am after watching him accomplish everything he did in high school, I’m almost more excited to see what he does next.

“I think he’s going to have an incredibly successful college career because Vince is a special kid who never stops doing whatever he can to be the best he can be.”