The Hotchkiss Bulldogs will wrestle under a new head coach when they open the season this Saturday at the Buena Vista Dual Team tournament. Richard Flores, a teacher at Hotchkiss K-8 school who coached the middle school program for several years, replaces Glen Suppes, head coach of the Bulldogs wrestling program for more than a decade.
Flores grew up in Delta and wrestled for Delta High School. He taught and coached high school wrestling at Greeley before returning to Delta County. Flores didn't wrestle in college, but he grew up in a wrestling family and was influenced by his dad, Henry Flores, a two-time national champion and all-American whose high school career includes three state titles for Fowler High School (95-lb, 1967; 112-pound, 1968; 123-lb, 1970). At 95-1, Flores has one of the best high school career records in state history.
Returning assistant coaches Matt Hall and Norman Vincent will be joined by Curtis Hintz and Cody Kanz.
Coley Wondra and Chuck Miller will coach the middle school program.
With weight certifications being completed late last week, Flores won't have weights finalized until just prior to the Buena Vista tournament.
One exception is senior Garrett Toothaker, a returning state qualifier who will start at 113 pounds. "He really looks sharp," said Flores. "He should have another good season."
Senior Jake Hubbell is also a returning state qualifier at 106 pounds. Two other seniors, Hank Edwards and Ross LeValley, return to the mat this season.
Edwards will probably open at 138 and possibly drop to last year's weight of 132, said Flores. LeValley is currently out with a concussion. Juniors Tristen Todd and Brendon Beck also bring varsity experience to the team.
And of the 18 eighth-grade wrestlers he coached last season, 15 are incoming freshmen this season. "A great handful of them are pretty tough," said Flores. "So with a little bit of maturity and a little bit of time they will be fantastic."
The Bulldogs will dual Grand Valley next Friday at 5 p.m. They compete on Dec. 14 at the annual Delta Invitational.blog comments powered by Disqus