GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KJCT) The Colorado outlaws youth wrestling program won the Heroes Conquest tournament and collected championship belts, trophies, and even a gauntlet.
"It feels good, it feels like you accomplished something," said Kadin Mulford.
"It was fun,” said Teek Fritzlan. “It was one of the big ones so I needed to win the gauntlet.
"We went there and took first place as a team,” Coach Robert Chelewski said. “We have nine kids. The second-place team had 45 kids. We saw improvement out of every kid this weekend which was great."
The small Outlaw team competes all over the country.
"Were just practicing in the garage in Grand Junction,” Chelewski said. “A couple of the kids wrestled in Atlantic City one day, five days later they wrestled in San Diego."
What they lack in size they make up for in talent. Colorado Outlaws has had many successful wrestlers in the program.
"These kids are looking at those pictures every day on the wall and see what they are doing,” said Chelewski. “They've got a kid that is wrestling at [the University of Northern Colorado] right now that they can look up to."
"They did their part to get up on the wall and I’ve got to do my part to get on the wall," Mulford said.
It all starts with the work they put in in the garage.
"Practice here is very intense,” said Chelewski. “It'll make most grown men cry. All the kids do at least 500 sit-ups, 500 push-ups in the mornings."
"It’s fun but at the same time it's hard,” said Kel Unrcin. “I like this practice because it challenges me to be a better wrestler."
All the time together practicing and on the road has brought this team much closer together.
"I mean, they motivate me,” Fritzlan said. “They have good partners."
"It's better because I have kids that beat me and kids that I beat,” said Gage Chelewski. “It just gives me a good feeling."
"It's definitely hard but it's fun though,” said Hassin Maynes. “All of us, we are like family."
"My favorite part is that everyone is really close,” Unrcin said. “If you get sad, they will bring you back up."
The community helps keep these kids on the mats and winning trophies...
"It's great. If we didn't have them, it would be a lot tougher for sure,” Robert Chelewski said. “We like the support of this valley and the businesses around here helping us out."
"I would like to thank our sponsors for everything,” Maynes said. “Without them, I wouldn't be able to be on the team."