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Wrestler knocked out during the state championship, allowed to finish wrestling

Two school districts are talking about one wrestling match.

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 Utah) – Two school districts are talking about one wrestling match.


Last Saturday, a 170lb state wrestling match between Beaver High School’s senior Travis Gilman and McKade Cox of Gunnison High School was underway.


Cox was able to take down Gilman and that’s when Gilman was knocked out.


“Shortly after the ref blew the whistle I look over and see Travis on the ground,” said Beaver High Schoolcoach Robbie Bradshaw. “The ref says well he was knocked out. And I said he was knocked out and I agree with that.


The referees called over the hired athletic trainers on site, who said Gilman was unfit to continue.


According to the rules, the only way Gilman could continue was with a doctor’s clearance.


That’s when the Beaver coach pulled a doctor out of the stands to run tests and see if Gilman did in fact suffer a concussion.


“That doctor was certified, demonstrated and showed his credentials. He was willing to sign that he had the proper training,” said Bart Thompson Assistant Director of Utah High School Activities Association. “That clearance was given, we accepted it and probably shouldn't have. We accepted it and allowed the kid to continue.”


Gilman came back to the mat and won.


Fans on the other side did not agree with the decision saying the coaches were hurting the wrestler.


“When you have an athlete unconscious and you have the coaches fighting for him to comeback and wrestle it is just not fair to that individual,” said Carl Cox.


Carl Cox is the father of the Gunnison wrestler McKade. He believes Gilman had a concussion and his win should not come at the expense of a brain injury.


“We have rules, we have guidelines we are supposed to follow. If we don't follow those rules then what is the good of having them.  The schools are penalized for not following those rules set up by the state. Well if the state don't follow there own rules then anarchy will play out,” Cox added.


UHSAA agrees and has awarded both wrestlers a state championship.


They are also working on bringing doctors into every tournament.


“It needs to be looked at because we need to have someone that is dispassionate that can look at a situation and say ‘yes state championship is important this kid has worked his entire life for that but it is not worth risking his life’s health or safety for it?’ its not,” said Thompson.

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