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Injury cuts wrestling short

DAYTON–A season-ending knee injury sustained in a match earlier this season ended the season for Bulldog wrestler Byron Collier, according to Dayton Wrestling Coach Carlos Norris.

The other wrestler on Norris's two-wrestler Bulldog team was also decimated by academic rules and is ineligible for further competition, thus ending the program for this year, Norris said.

Collier's attitude on the mat impressed competitors and fans, Norris said. "Guys came up to me to congratulate me and the community for the way Byron conducted himself," Norris said. "If he stick with this, he's got a great potential to be a contender in the future."

Norris picked up the slack with the Middle School Wrestling Team, shepherding eighth graders Garrett Yost, Hunter Griffen, and seventh-grader Luke Collier.

Yost wrestled at Jennifer Middle School in Lewiston on Jan. 23, pinning Valentina Jefferson in the first round, then losing a 12-11 decision to Ropati Atuaia of Pullman.

"Garrett wrestled super hard for his second match ever," Norris said, "against people who have wrestled many years. It's his first year and he's already competing with more experienced wrestlers.

"Had he had a few more seconds on the clock, he would've got a reversal and won by one point," Norris said. "It was a real nail-biter, fun match to watch."

Hunter Griffen pinned three opponents, Cody York of Jennifer, Sam McFarland of Pullman and Blake Davis of Jennifer.

"Hunter looks very, very tough this year," Norris said. "If he keeps putting in hard work at practice and dedicates himself to wrestling, we have a really good potential of winning Bi-State with Hunter."

"We're excited about maybe bringing back a Bi-State Title," Norris said.

Luke Collier lost by fall to Corbin Nelson and Lincoln Lovgren, both of Pomeroy.

"Luke fought really, really hard and never gave up," Norris said. "He's a really great leader to have on the team. Win or lose, he's in his teammate's corner."

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