It took something special to beat local wrestlers Cameron Everts of Lampasas and Killeen High's Zharia Hopkins on Saturday at the state wrestling tournament.
A state champion to be precise.
Everts and Hopkins fell in the semifinals to the eventual winners of their respective brackets, but both bounced back with a pair of impressive victories to finish third and earn bronze medals.
Everts fell 13-5 to eventual Class 5A 160-pound champ and senior Tommy Flaherty of Prosper in the semifinals.
Everts earned a spot in the third-place match by pinning Dumas' Omar Delgado. He then routed Carrollton Creekview's Rishard Woodley 14-6 for his bronze medal.
Woodley, like Everts, started the day by losing in the semifinals.
Everts and two other sophomores were the youngest of the 16 qualifiers for the 160-pound championship.
Hopkins, a senior, lost 6-0 to Cypress Falls' Augustina Ijoma in the semis. Ijoma, who lost only one of her 48 matches this season, went on to pin her championship opponent to win the 6A girls 165 title.
From there, Hopkins (30-4) needed just 53 seconds to win two matches and the bronze medal. She pinned Conroe's Emily Manzanarez in 19 ticks to secure a spot in the third-place match, then finished off Arlington Houston's Taniya Bradford in 34 seconds in a rematch of their Friday quarterfinal.
Due to wet conditions, the jumping events at Belton's Big Red Relays were canceled, so Copperas Cove pole vaulter Kyle Stifflemire went to the Dripping Springs meet and won the pole vault, clearing the bar at 15 feet.
Copperas Cove swept a doubleheader at Georgetown East View to go 3-0 on the season.
Tyler Ingram and Colby Jost each homered as the Bulldawgs won the opener 18-0. Jaylen Smith got the win, going five innings, giving up one hit and ringing up 10 strikeouts.
In the second game, Cove scored two runs in the top of the seventh to win 5-4.
Jost, Smith and Josh Ropple had two hits each. Ingram, Ropple and Cameron Johnson all pitched, with Johnson striking out the side in the seventh to get the victory.