By Shawn O’Brate
CASPER–Over the weekend the final tournament of the Wyoming Amateur Wrestling Association (WAWA) season took place in Casper with many of Riverton and Lander’s finest young wrestlers taking the mat for the last time this season.
The Riverton USA Wrestling club, fresh off the Maddyx Fischer Memorial tournament last week, sent over 25 young athletes to the state tournament with twenty total medals coming back home from Casper.
One very special athlete that came home with some of those medals was 10U, 120-pound wrestler Aiden Apodaca. Apodaca won first place in all three styles of wrestling which made him one of the only three-style champions in recent WAWA history.
This was the cap on a fantastic season by Apodaca who was undefeated in the state of Wyoming all year, only losing two total matches all year back at the Montana Open where he still finished in fourth place.
Another strong showing by a Riverton boy was Rylan Gambler who placed third in both the Greco and Freestyle 10U 84-pound brackets. Gambler was not the only one to place in multiple events though, Manuel Ramos from the 12U boys 135-pound brackets won a fifth-place medal in both the Freestyle and Folkstyle events.
There was also a great showing by Autumn Osborne, one of the few girls that Riverton USA Wrestling has on their roster. Osborne brought everything she had to the mat when she won second-place in the girls 16U 117-122 pound bracket.
The other second-place finishes of note were by 14U boys Daniel Clawson in the 165-pound Folkstyle bracket and Travis Hurtado in the 149-pound Greco bracket. Clawson and Hurtado also had outstanding showings in the Freestyle events early in the day when Clawson took third and Hurtado grabbed the fourth-place medal.
And finally Konnor Frost, one of the oldest boys to grace the mat for Riverton, took third in the 16U boys 106-pound brackets in the Freestyle events while also bringing home a fifth-place finish in the same Folkstyle class.
All-in-all the Riverton USA Wrestling team really left it all out on the mats during the final tournament of the year, ultimately bringing home plenty of hardware to prove it. They will not take the mats again until January 2023 but there will be a special awards night on Sunday, April 24th at 5 PM (location unknown). Stay up to date on the event by following the Riverton USA Wrestling Facebook page.