Corey Allen has been to hell and back, and the journey resulted in a perfect season on the mat.
Allen finished off a perfect 36-0 season on Saturday at Metra by winning the Class AA 160-pound wrestling title.
Parents: Jim and Janice Allen.
Brothers and sisters: Kelly, 20; Kyle, 15; O.J., 15; and Kimberly, 11.
Sports: Wrestling, football.
Hobbies: Fishing, camping.
Favorite athlete: Jerry Rice.
Favorite movie: The Shawshank Redemption.
CD Im listening to right now: Red Hot Chili Peppers.
Allen, who placed fifth at state as a sophomore and fourth as a junior, said his turning point as a wrestler was a trip to Minneapolis last summer for a camp put on by University of Minnesota wrestling coach J Robinson.
It was hell. Thats the only way I can describe it, said Allen. It was a 28-day camp. We were up at 6 a.m. and on the mat at 6:30 a.m. every day … and that was the first of four practices every day.
Allen said the experience of Robinsons camp made him better on the mat as well as mentally.
It made me more confident, said Allen, who was joined at the camp by Billings Senior teammates Bryan Neiter, who lost just one match this season and won the Class AA 171-pound title. They taught us a lot about the mental side of wrestling.
And I learned a lot about technique, too. I did the little things a lot better this year I think that was my biggest improvement this year.
Allen said a perfect season was a goal of his before the season, but added that he didnt really think about it until the campaign was more than half finished.
I came back to beat Marcus Andy 4-3 in our dual against Skyview (a 39-32 Senior win in late January), said Allen. I got a takedown about halfway through the third period to beat him.
I think after that match was the first time that I really thought about the fact that I hadnt lost a match yet. After that, I definitely wanted to finish it (undefeated).
Allen, the first Billings wrestler to finish the season unbeaten since Skyviews Joey Malia went 34-0 in 1998-99, was one of three Senior wrestlers to win individual titles on Saturday. In addition to Allen and Neiter, heavyweight Ron LaForge was a champion, helping coach Lonnie Robertsons Broncs to a fifth-place finish in the Class AA team race.
It was a great season for us, said Allen. We beat Skyview (the Class AA team champion) in a dual and we had a great state tournament.
I think that was a big part of my season. We were all so focused on the team that nobody really talked about individual records much that definitely helped me.
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