DES MOINES — It wasn’t the finish he was hoping for. And he didn’t get to climb very far up the state wrestling tournament podium.
But Colfax-Mingo senior Cauy Fitch set a benchmark that he can be proud of as he moves into the next phase of his life.
Fitch won his first match to stay on the championship side of the bracket on Thursday but went 2-3 the rest of the way and finished eighth in Class 1A at 120 pounds at the Iowa High School State Wrestling Championships at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines.
“He’s disappointed. He reached his goal of making the podium, but he wanted to climb a little higher,” Colfax-Mingo coach Erin Hume said. “He didn’t get it, but he had an amazing career, he’s a great kid and we are going to miss him.”
Sixth-ranked Fitch (33-5) lost his quarterfinal match 12-8 to third-ranked Casey Baker of Interstate 35 but bounced back with an 11-5 win over seventh-ranked Weston Allen of Underwood in the second-round consolation match.
Fitch led by a point in the third period but used a cradle to secure back points and that allowed him to pull away in the final minute.
“He’s not a guy who looks for a cradle, but it presented itself and he was able to tack on some key points,” Colfax-Mingo coach Erin Hume said. “He had to try something. He held on for dear life.”
Fitch is a two-time state qualifier but this is his first state medal and the first place winner at Colfax-Mingo since Michael Bucklin won the state title back in 2004.
“For him to bounce back was huge. This is big for him and for the program,” Hume said. ‘He has worked so hard. He’s put in the time. It paid off. I don’t think he understands how big this is. It might not hit him until later.”
Fitch went 2-2 on Friday night and then lost a 1A 120-pound seventh-place match to Eagle Grove’s Gabe Rolon. Rolon used a big move to grab an early lead and then held off Fitch’s comeback in a 12-8 victory.
“Cauy wasn’t ready for his style early on,” Hume said. “That kid went down to a knee and baited him looking for a big move. He got it and getting down like that early against good wrestlers is tough to come back from. I think he battled though.
Fitch ended his career with a school-record 142 wins.
The Tigerhawks bring back three state qualifiers in juniors Trystin Ross and Cyden Fitch and sophomore Noah Strohmeyer, who all went 0-2 at state on Thursday.