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Valley Christian junior Aria Ottmueller, left, discusses strategy between jumps with teammate Colin Lowney, middle, and pole vault coach Perry Fraley. [Jason P. Skoda/Special to Tribune]
Valley Christian junior Aria Ottmueller, who is legally blind, knows exactly how many steps it takes before placing the pole vault in the proper place in order to complete a jump. [Jason P. Skoda/Special to Tribune]
Valley Christian junior Aria Ottmueller is legally blind but it hasn't stopped her from qualifying for the Division IV state tournament. [Jason P. Skoda/Special to Tribune]
Valley Christian junior Aria Ottmueller has shown tremendous courage in competing in qualifying for state in pole vault despite being legally blind. [Jason P. Skoda/Special to Tribune]
Brian Brady has all the confidence in his son, Dalton, and the latter credited his father for developing him into one of the best wrestlers the state of Arizona has ever seen.
All-Tribune First Team
PRESCOTT VALLEY - Ted Rico stood on the podium at last year’s state tournament and felt nothing but disappointment.
PRESCOTT VALLEY – The big-school wrestling championships had a familiar look to it.
PRESCOTT VALLEY – Transforming from a somewhat plump freshman to a svelte three-time state wrestling champion has given Alex Bambic one of the most unique – and successful – careers in Arizona wrestling history.
PRESCOTT VALLEY – It was hard to take it all in at times.
PRESCOTT VALLEY - All season the complaints were that two of the Division I sectionals were overloaded with power teams while the other two weren’t nearly as strong.
The path to the state wrestling tournament has been scrutinized with power pockets of teams at certain sectional tournaments.
The start of each of wrestling season in Arizona the last few season has had some common themes.
The key to a great food experience around the holidays is extending it as long as possible.
Superman had his cape and Will Claye had his dreadlocks.
Peanut butter mixed with some New Jersey-grit and broken down walls has Arizona wrestling at one of its highest points in recent memory, if not a peak.
All-Tribune First Team
Ben Andrew could have taken an easier route, but it just isn’t his mindset.
The only team in the state that can simulate the hellish style St. Mary's brings to a girls basketball games is St. Mary's.
PRESCOTT VALLEY - In today's high school sporting world, the Chandler wrestling program won one for the old neighborhood.
Samson Imonode clearly found his place, and not just in reaching the Division I 152-pound semifinals. It is more about the wrestling program that is Horizon.
PRESCOTT VALLEY - Time trials are usually not associated with wrestling but don't tell that to Tempe senior James Sanchez.
Highland state-champion Curt Done breezed into the Division I 138-pound weight classes after beating Mountain View's Blake Monty, 16-5.
PRESCOTT VALLEY - Every year there is one weight class that is steeped in talent.
Combs' Ted Rico, right, reaches for an outside single as Show Low's Blake Schweigert attempts to fend it off in the 113-pounds semifinals, which Schweigert eventually won with a pin.
Tempe senior James Sanchez, right, secures a takedown against Tucson Sabino's Matt Rapp in a 8-4 win to advance the Division III 132-pound state championship match.
PRESCOTT VALLEY - James Sanchez's smile looked like it could last a lifetime on Thursday, while Matt Sohky had a gash on his left check that trickled blood.
2012 Wrestling State Tournaments
Just two seasons ago, when Dante Patrick was a sophomore, he was a talented 103-pounder who was quick and slick enough to find his way to the podium as he finished third at the state tournament.
Mountain View might not have a bunch of stars, but it is clear the Toros have plenty of wrestlers willing to battle.
Desert Vista's Alex Bambic, top, has put in plenty of time nationally and internationlly this offseason as he attempts to win his second Arizona state title at 195 pounds.
Red Mountain’s Brandon Stratton is shown during a recent match against Mesa. Stratton and the Mountain Lions begin sectional tournament action today at Desert Vista High School.
Coaches always want more.