FARMINGTON — Piedra Vista's Ryan Rino will get the opportunity to continue his wrestling career.
On Thursday, Rino signed his National Letter of Intent to compete for Wayland Baptist University in Plainview, Texas.
The Panther senior was a part of three team state championships in 2012, 2013 and 2014, and he won individual championships at 152 pounds in 2013 and 138 pounds in 2014.
"I finally realized what I wanted when I came to high school," Rino said. "Wrestling was something I was always good at. It teaches you life lessons. It's great to be going on to the next level. I think I'm ready for it."
The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics school offers the only college wrestling program in Texas.
"They have great facilities, great coaching staff," said Rino's coach and step-father, Levi Stout. "I think Ryan is ready to compete at the next level."
Stout said Rino's talents that carried him through his high school career will carry over to college and allow him to continue his success.
"His stature is something a lot of coaches are looking for, being short and thick like that," Stout said of Rino. "He's incredible on his feet. That's where the college game is, and that's what PV is about."
Rino will join 2013 PV graduate Wyatt Hardy at the Wayland Baptist program.
"We killed each other in the (wrestling) room last year, and that's what made us champions," Rino said. "I feel like we could do that again in college and become all-Americans."
Rino said he plans to continue building off of what he learned during his time with the Panthers.
"It's a great honor," he said. "Especially with all the coaches and the support at PV and Levi. I couldn't have done it without him."Joshua Perry can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org; 505-564-4577. Follow him on Twitter @jperrysuu.