Every high school athletic program is in search of a gold nugget. In the mines of Cherry Creek High School, however, what they found instead, was Finesilver.
Twins Zach and Mitch -- class of 2014 -- and their younger twin brothers Josh and Matt -- class of 2016 -- created a wrestling dynasty during their time with the Bruins. Together, the four of them combined to make 12 state championship appearances, taking home four individual state titles and numerous podium finishes in the process.
"Honestly, I don't think it was anything that we did special," Josh Finesilver said. "I think all we did was work hard and bought into what our coaches had for us."
Turns out, the Finesilver four are modest, as well. Zach Finesilver held a high school career record of 163-21 with 77 pins. Twin brother Mitch finished 162-17 with 357 takedowns. Josh finished his high school career with a 144-43 record and 263 takedowns. Twin Matt went 161-27 with 86 pins.
"Our high school coaches and the people at this school did so much for us growing up, it's awesome to be back," Mitch said. "We try to come back as much as possible. Whenever we're in town, we like to stick our heads in and say hi."
Growing up, the Finesilvers tried every sport imaginable. Football was a big part of their lives up through middle school, but when the boys hit the ninth grade, they got serious about wrestling, competing year-round and signing up to wrestle in national tournaments. Anyone who knew them as children could've probably guessed that's where they would end up.
"We used to call them battle royals," Josh said of their at-home wrestling duals. "They happened, probably every day. Usually it'd be a younger twin with an older twin and we'd just fight, different pairings every time."
Josh and Matt, being the younger set of twins, also admitted they would try to double-team an older twin if they could get him alone. The result meant their mom and dad had to often-times shell out money for more drywall.
"Yeah, we put a lot of holes in the wall," Mitch said with a laugh.
As the Finesilver boys grew and matured, so did their abilities on the mat. Their successes garnered attention, both in-state and nationally. Eventually, colleges came calling. Zach and Mitch, being the older twins, picked first. They chose Duke University.
"Duke didn't have an amazing wrestling tradition," Zach said. "There were definitely good guys in the past, but not like other colleges. We came in with kids like Conner Hartmann and Jacob Kasper who were helping to, not only lead us, but also, we wanted to help push them in the wrestling room."
"My dad coming in said, Duke is the land of opportunity, and it really has been," Mitch added. "I've been able to do everything I've wanted to and more since I've been there academically and wrestling-wise."
Josh and Matt -- though open to other schools -- eventually chose Duke, as well.
"When we were deciding, we wanted to stick together, for sure," Matt said of twin brother Josh. "We weren't exactly sure if we wanted to go with [Mitch and Zach], but in the back of our minds, I think we always kind of thought we were going to go and follow them."
"We were a packaged deal," Josh added. "I know there were a couple of times where a coach was just trying to recruit one of us, and we would just say politely, 'I want to stay with my brother.'"
Today, Duke is on the verge of one of its best seasons ever. Mitch and Zach are now redshirt juniors for the Blue Devils, wrestling at 157 and 165 pounds, respectively. Josh, 133 pounds, and Matt, 174 pounds, are freshmen. All four are starters.
"Every year has kind of been a little bit better, a little bit better," Mitch -- who is also the 11th ranked wrestler in the nation for his weight class -- said. "This year, it's coming to fruition for us."
That was on display this past week, when the Finesilvers returned home to take on the University of Northern Colorado and Cal State Bakersfield in Greeley. While all four wrestle at different weight classes, they still rely on one another to push them.
"We'll be able to cheer each other on, and then it's like, we have to get ready for our own match after that," Zach said. "If our brother hopefully wins, then you get pumped up. If he loses, then you're like, I gotta get it back for the team."
"We're not afraid to call each other out, because we're in it for each other's best interest," Matt said. "We don't take it personal, it's all business."
But it's business that has turned into a great investment. After all, in their Colorado homecoming, the Finesilver four combined to go 7-1 on the day.
Neither Cherry Creek nor Duke struck gold when digging for talent and passion. They found something far more valuable. They found Finesilver.