Sandy • Clay Moss literally looked up to his brother during every practice.
On the wall high above the Jordan High wrestling mats hangs a banner commemorating state wrestling champions. Trevor Moss stood alone until last week.
"He was always there in the room helping me and giving me motivation," Moss, a junior, said. "That's really what helped me accomplish what I accomplished. Every day in practice I visualized my goal.
"My brother was the banner all alone for 11 years."
Clay defeated Layton's Landon Brown 3-1 in the 182-pound final at the Class 5A state wrestling championships last week and will join Trevor, who won the 171-pound title in 2002, on the banner as the school's only state champs.
Moss' path to the championship was similar to the one he took a week earlier in winning the divisional meet. He defeated Layton's Dylan Sackett in the semifinals before he met Brown in the final in each meet.
"I just went in like a totally different wrestler, with the confidence that I'd already beaten them once," said Moss, who pinned Sackett in the state meet. "I watched film on them and used moves I felt were right.
"It was way overwhelming when it happened. I was excited."
Jordan coach Chris Babinski compared Moss to a thoroughbred horse who needed to be nurtured throughout the season because of wear and tear on his body.
Moss hit the mat later than most in the program after playing running back and linebacker for the Beetdiggers' state championship football team.
"His shoulders from football were bothering him, and they would continually be aggravated in matches," Babinski said. "We had to nurture him along to ensure he was in top condition when times came and he had to perform.
"He is just a phenomenal athlete. He has such tremendous power."
Moss excels at multiple sports as did his brother Trevor, who played quarterback for the Beetdiggers. Clay now moves on to playing the outfield in baseball and running the sprint distances in track.
In ninth grade, he made Jordan's basketball team, but he instead chose wrestling as his winter competition.
"I wanted to wrestle because I felt it was right," said Moss, whose older brother Hayden was a state runner-up in wrestling as well. "It turned out to be the best decision I've ever made."