While watching junior 120-pounder Patrick Allis fall behind in the final seconds of his Class 4A state wrestling championship match, Discovery Canyon coach Marques Bravo kept the faith.
Doubt would've been reasonable considering the circumstances.
Bravo described Allis’ championship opponent, Windsor’s Vance VomBaur, as a “freshman phenom.” VomBaur was responsible for two of Allis’ three losses this season. The other came from Malik Heinselman, the 5A champion at 120 pounds.
Allis fell behind 4-3 in the final 15 seconds of the championship match before a penalty point tied it.
“At a minimum it was going to go into overtime,” Bravo said.
“I was definitely pretty confident going into overtime, but it didn’t get there.”
The Discovery Canyon junior yanked his right arm free in the final five seconds for an escape, a 5-4 victory and his first state championship to earn Gazette Preps Peak Performer of the Week.
“It’s really weird going from such different levels all the sudden just to comfort again,” Allis said. “Right after I won, it was pandemonium. It was just crazy.”
Bravo celebrated the moment by yelling “state champ” at Allis as the match ended before picking up the junior’s discarded headgear and spiking it and embracing the Thunder’s lone state champion.
“It’s like this pure rush of adrenaline and joy and excitement,” Bravo said, “and a sense of relief.”
Allis earned a first-round pin to advance to the quarterfinals, where he survived a 3-1 decision against Pueblo County senior Josiah Nava.
“Super strong kid,” Allis said of Nava. “I just knew I needed to go out there, stay solid and get in his head a little bit.”
He did just that, using an offensive approach to earn a stall point against a three-time finalist, according to his coach.
“That just shows how aggressive he was, the kinda man on a mission he was this weekend,” Bravo said.
That momentum propelled Allis to a 12-2 major decision in the semifinals, setting up a third showdown with VamBaur.
This time around, Bravo encouraged Allis to use an inside trip and focus on wrist control and different tie ups.
“Coach Bravo has helped me a lot with gameplanning and everything,” Allis said. “He kinda gave me a gameplan on how to beat him, and I stuck to it.”
After finishing fifth and second at 106 as a freshman and sophomore, respectively, Allis will carry his first state championship into the club season, where he plans to compete in a national high school tournament in Virginia. Then, he hopes to make a greco-roman national team.
He’s started hearing from college programs but said he doesn’t have a favorite yet. He’s taking a couple weeks off from training to recover and put some weight back on.
That should provide the junior some time relive a whirlwind finish that produced his greatest wrestling achievement to date.
“I don’t think I’ve had a match that big,” Allis said, “that I’ve won at least.”
Other Peak Performers
Dawson Carper, Rampart
The Hawai’i signee hit his offensive stride at the end of the regular season, helping the Rams pick up two wins last week. The 6-foot-11 senior had 22 points, eight rebounds and two blocks in a win over Palmer on Tuesday before putting up 27 points on 12 of 14 shooting with nine rebounds and a block against Coronado on Friday.
Makenna Bodette, St. Mary’s
Bodette played a big role in helping the Pirates put the finishing touches on a perfect regular season. On Tuesday, she posted 21 points, nine rebounds and two assists against Alamosa before going for 19 points, eight rebounds and three blocks against Liberty Commons on Friday. She made 18 of 25 field goals on the week.
Sean Bolduc, Palmer
It was a long, trying season for the Palmer hockey program, which finished 1-18 on the season, but Sean Bolduc’s 51 saves in Saturday’s season finale provided some sort of a positive finish. Bolduc also made 10 saves on 13 chances in a loss to Mullen on monday.