BOZEMAN — After locking up a first-round pin over Great Falls' Kale Baumann to seal the 145-pound State AA wrestling title on Saturday at MetraPark in Billings, a noticeable amount of blood could be seen puddling underneath Avery Allen's right eye.
Considering what the Bozeman High senior had just accomplished in his final high school match, that little laceration was a small price to pay.
Allen had just stamped his name into the record books as Montana's 40th four-time state wrestling champion — doing it just minutes after Kalispell Glacier's Teegan Vasquez became the 39th — and just the second for the Hawks after Leif Schroeder won four in a row for Bozeman in 2020.
"Yeah no it's for sure worth it," Allen said after the match. "It means something, especially my last match, having a little blood coming out from my face. I'm happy that I get a little scar at the end of it. Something that I can leave in this arena."
For Allen, those consistent results have been the product of a consistent approach to every match, no matter who was favored to win.
"My mindset is always the same," Allen said. "Especially the last match, anything can happen. I went out there knowing that I can be the one that's not getting my hand raised. But I think at the end of the day it helps me win the matches.
"I'm always trying to be offensive in my matches and move my feet and I'm just happy that I got it done. I'm always looking for the first-round pin and I was able to get it."
Watching Vasquez chase history along with him provided a level of motivation and camaraderie for Allen, who concluded his senior season with a perfect 26-0 record.
"It's awesome," said Allen of Vasquez. "We watch each other battle all the time. Put a lot of blood, sweat and tears into it, literally. I'm excited to go talk to him, congratulate him. I know that we'll be doing big things in the future and be able to share it together."