Bronson Baxter, Dumas wrestling, Soph.
On the mat: After a freshman year which showed promise, Baxter proved how much he has improved over the past year at last weekend’s Region I-5A tournament in El Paso and now has to be considered a championship caliber competitor. As Dumas won the team title with 177.5 points, Baxter was the team’s only wrestler to win an individual title, winning all four of his matches to claim the crown in the 145-pound class. Baxter cruised through the first three rounds with relative ease, winning via two pins and a major decision over Randall’s Elijah Pena to reach the finals. There, Baxter faced a tougher match against Aaron Aragon of El Paso Andress. Baxter prevailed in a 5-1 decision to take home the gold medal and improve his record to 50-4 on the season. At the state tournament starting Friday in Cypress, Baxter will face Huntsville’s Tyler Pomeroy in the first round in his quest for a medal.
Coach Clint Chamblin: “We have really high expectations for him. We know the type of talent he has. His work ethic is really good. He put in a lot of work over the summer and wrestled for Team Texas and wrestled at a national tournament in Fargo. One of the biggest things is he’s come a long way on his feet and wrestling well on top. He’s always been really good from the bottom. He’s fine-tuned a lot of things. It seems like he feels positions better. He wrestled a really tough Randall kid in the semis and he gave us all we wanted. He just stayed in position and he doesn’t make a lot of mistakes. I think his chances are very high (to win a medal at state). He just needs to do what he does best and set the pace.”
Baxter: “Our motto is expect success so when you train every day it’s for those gold medals. When we show up here every day that’s our goal is to win. It was our expectations. I’ve been wrestling a long time so going through tournaments is getting more natural. It just comes with time. I knew that I had to just pick it up in the wrestling room every day. Maturing is one big part of it. Being a freshman I came in kind of scared. Wrestling throughout the year, just being confident is the key. (The state tournament) is not bigger than anything else. It’s just another tournament. I don’t think there’s anybody there who’s worked any harder than I have, so I think it’s going to end up good.”
Favorite band or musician: Bruno Mars
Favorite social media platform: Snapchat
Favorite athlete: Jordan Burroughs
Bet you didn’t know: Is in the top one percent of his class.
Parents: Kurt and Jenetta Baxter