Multiple Teams · Wrestling: Molina and Koon win in regular season finale

    • By Jocelyn Rowley


    • Feb 8, 2018 Updated Feb 8, 2018

Niwot honored senior wrestlers Jose Lopez, David Koon, Keith Hemenway, and Brandon Barton following the last dual of the season.

Photo by Jocelyn Rowley

The official declares sophomore David Koon the winner over Mountain View’s Riley Coogan.

Photo by Jocelyn Rowley

The official declares sophomore Julian Molina (182) the winner over Mountain View’s Darion Sexton.


Photo by Jocelyn Rowley

The official declares sophomore Matt Bitterman (126) the winner over Mountain View’s Cedric Mallet at 1:22.

The Niwot wrestling team wrapped up the 2017-18 regular season on Feb. 1, falling 55-24 to 10th-ranked Mountain View. Matt Bitterman, David Koon, and Julian Molina all posted victories in their contested matches, while senior Brandon Barton was the beneficiary of a forfeit in the 138-pound class. Sophomores Keith Hemenway and Colton Gruszczynski fell in decisions.

Following the meet, Niwot head coach Bobby Matthews said he was pleased with his wrestlers’ improvement down the stretch, even if it had not yet resulted in much team success.

“I’m starting to see progress now,” Matthews said. “I’m seeing it from Keith Hemenway. [Mountain View’s Chad Baumann] split his eye open at the beginning of the year and he only lasted 17 seconds with him. For him to go six minutes, that’s showing that he’s getting better. I’m seeing fight from Daniel Torres… [Mountain View’s Braden Barker] is the second-ranked kid in the state, and I’m seeing him fight off his back and frustrate a kid like that. So I’m starting to see what we’re working on.”

Niwot jumped out to an early 18-3 lead thanks to wins in three of the night’s first four matches. Bitterman (126) pinned Mountain View’s Cedric Mallet at 1:22, followed by Koon (145), who took down Riley Coogan at 2:33. Unfortunately, it was rough going for the Cougars after that. In the next 10 matches, only Molina (182) scored for Niwot, with a buzzer-beater pin of Darion Sexton at 5:57.

It was the second win of the week for both Bitterman and Koon, who were two of the few bright spots in Niwot’s tri-meet losses to Skyline (58-15) and Weld Central (60-12) the night before. Bitterman pinned Mikey Roskop (5:35) for the Cougars’ lone contested win against Weld Central, while Koon took down Skyline’s Isaias Rivas in just 35 seconds. Gruszczynski also picked up a win against the Falcons, a 7-5 decision over Eric Saenz.

Niwot was without of the services of the Lopez brothers, both of whom were out with serious injuries. Senior Jose (285) broke his arm during the Thornton Invitational on Jan. 27, but still finished in sixth place. Unfortunately, he will be unable to compete in the postseason. Sophomore Jovani (220) is recovering from a concussion.

Up next for the Cougars is the Class 4A Region 4 tournament, which will determine who moves on to State. In 2017, Jose Lopez was a surprise state-qualifier after a fourth-place finish at the Regional over Mead’s Luis Miramontes.

“You never know with Regionals,” Matthews said. “Last year we went, and all of the sudden Brandon placed, and Jose goes to State. We have those types of things that happen. It’s hard to say who’s going to do what. As long as we compete, and go out there and give it everything we have, that’s all I’m concerned about.”

(1/31) Skyline 58 Niwot 15

145 — David Koon over Isaias Rivas, SHS (Fall 0:35); 152 — Keith Hemenway over Creighton Trembly, SHS (Fall 5:03); 160 — Caden Silva, SHS over Long Pham (Fall 0:53); 170 — Ricky Waters, SHS over Nathan Hemenway (Fall 1:38); 182 — Angel Perez, SHS over (For.); 195 — Isaac Hesse, SHS over Daniel Torres (MD 14-4); 220 — Alex Ortiz, SHS over (For.); 285 — Oscar Aranday, SHS over (For.); 106 — Liam Langhrey, SHS over Max Pecherzewski (Fall 3:12); 113 — Andrew Sandoval, SHS over Andy Greve (Fall 1:50); 120 — Grayden Bridwell, SHS over (For.); 126 — Jose Perez, SHS over Matt Bitterman (Fall 5:14); 132 — Colton Gruszczynski over Eric Saenz, SHS (Dec 7-5); 138 — Double Forfeit

(1/31) Weld Central 60, Niwot 12

138 — Rieley Roskop, WELD over (For.); 145 — Braden Baumgartner, WELD over David Koon (Fall 4:49); 152 — Wyatt Thyfault, WELD over Keith Hemenway (Fall 3:26); 160 — Jimmy Laconte, WELD over Long Pham (Fall 1:04); 170 — Quentin Jiner, WELD over Nathan Hemenway (Fall 3:13); 182 — Julian Molina over, WELD (For.); 195 — Dakota Tingle, WELD over Daniel Torres (Fall 1:00);220 — Double Forfeit; 285 — Double Forfeit ; 106 — Santana Hernandez, WELD over Max Pecherzewski (Fall 1:52); 113 — Kolton Robertson, WELD over Andy Greve (Fall 1:02); 120 — Matthew Villareal, WELD over (For.); 126 — Matt Bitterman over Mikey Roskop, WELD (Fall 5:35); 132 — Tanner Baumgartner, WELD over Colton Gruszczynski (Fall 2:52)

(2/1) Mountain View 55, Niwot 24

126 — Matt Bitterman over Cedric Mallett, MVHS (Fall 1:22); 132 — CJ Bever, MVHS over Colton Gruszczynski (Dec 4-2); 138 — Brandon Barton over, MVHS (For.); 145 — David Koon over Riley Cogan, MVHS (Fall 2:33); 152 — Chad Baumann, MVHS over Keith Hemenway (MD 11-0); 160 — Jackson Gilbert, MVHS over Long Pham (Fall 0:45); 170 — Braydon Besse, MVHS over Nathan Hemenway (Fall 1:33); 182 — Julian Molina over Darion Sexton, MVHS (Fall 5:57); 195 — Braden Barker, MVHS over Daniel Torres (Fall 1:42); 220 — Josh Boles, MVHS over (For.); 285 — Martin Rodriquez, MVHS over (For.); 106 — Kaley Barker, MVHS over Max Pecherzewski (Fall 1:04); 113 — Mason Vigil, MVHS over Andy Greve (Fall 0:38); 120 — Malachi Contreras, MVHS over (For.)