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After a second-place finish at state, Crook County wrestling coach Jake Gonzales was named OSAA's 5A Coach of the Year.

Crook County High School head wrestling coach Jake Gonzales was recently named the 2021-2022 OSAA Class 5A Wrestling Coach of the Year by the Oregon Coaches Association.

PMG PHOTO: LON AUSTIN - Crook County wrestling coach Jake Gonzales was recently named the 5A Wrestling Coach of the Year. Gonzales led the Cowboys to a second-place finish at state this year.The award was given out at the annual Oregon Coaches Association banquet, which was held Saturday, May 21, at the Club Level of Autzen Stadium on the campus of University of Oregon in Eugene.

"I think it's good," coach Gonzales said of the award. "I think that shows that we are doing the right thing. The credit goes to a lot of people though, rather than myself. My kids and coaches, parents, the school and the community. I guess it's an award for everyone."

Gonzales received the award after guiding the Cowboys to a second-place finish at this year's OSAA Class 5A State Wrestling Championships. The Cowboys crowned just one individual champion at state, but were able to finish second because of team depth. Crook County sent 21 wrestlers to the tournament, with 15 winning at least one match and nine placing.

The Cowboys, who were ranked third entering the state tournament, finished two points ahead of top-ranked Thurston and 30.5 points behind eventual winner Crescent Valley, which had seven individual state champions.

The Cowboys, who are a perennial wrestling power, move down from Class 5A to Class 4A next season. They should once again be one of the favorites to contend for a state title.

"It was a good banquet, and they did a great job," Gonzales said of the Oregon Coaches Association banquet. "I'm grateful and appreciate that I get recognized that way, but there's still a lot of work to be done. I'm excited for this next year."

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