Horsemen compete against a tough field and finish 14th among 17 schools
By Arnie Leshin | December 18, 2017
The St. Michael’s wrestling team competed Saturday at Tucumcari High’s annual Rattler Invitational and came away with two top-four medalists and one top-eight finisher.
The mats were laid down in what is historically known as Tucumcari’s “Snake Pit.”
Horsemen senior Dominic Smith moved up from his usual weight of 138 to 145 and placed third among some strong competition. He advanced from an opening-round bye to the quarterfinals that he won via a first period fall.
Then he faced Jordan Gallegos of Los Lunas, whom he defeated last year, but with a one-point lead in the second period, he was caught in a precarious position and a fall was called against him in the final seconds.
Senior Sam Baca of St. Michael’s placed fourth at 152 after advancing on a first-round bye and a fall in the quarterfinals. Baca then dropped a 1-point decision in the championship semifinals, and wound up with yet another tight setback in the third place final.
Sophomore Kaleb Herndon earned a decision and a pin for his initial varsity wins of the season in route to making the final eight in the 160 weight.
Los Lunas won the team title, followed by Valencia, Taos, Liberal (Kansas) and Robertson.
Said Horsemen head coach Tommy Trujillo: “We learned some things today and we have plenty to work on as a team, but we had guys battling out there in every match to the end and I loved to see that.”
NOTE: Assistant coach Robert Smith contributed to this report.