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Vernal
3:55 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

Uintah Wrestling Coach Wins World Championship

It's not everyday an ordinary high school coach receives a police escort through town, complete with signs, banners, and a waiting crowd of students remixing a cheer in your honor. But then again it's not every day that same coach wins a world championship.

Uintah High School wrestling coach Gregg Stensgard had set a goal for himself the past five years: bring home the gold in the Greco-Roman Wrestling Veteran World Championship.

In 2008, Stensgard traveled to Russia and earned a bronze medal. Last year in Poland he came home with a silver medal. But this year's competition proved successful for the 53 year old, as he became only the third American to ever win a gold at the Veteran World Championship.

After arriving back home to Vernal, Stensgard told the crowd of 100 that he knows he did his best.

"I guess I said it to a lot of my athletes you never quit trying to be your best. I tried to be my best and I finally got there. It was great. It was a moment I'll never forget when they raised the national flag and played the national anthem and the Russians had to listen to our song."

Stensgard didn't know if he would be trying for a second gold medal in 2013. The only thing he knew for certain was that he hadn't stopped smiling since finally accomplishing his lifelong goal. Stensgard added that seeing all the support from his school, his family and his community had left him speechless. But the enthusiastic crowd helped him vocalize just how he was feeling.