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Wolves are tops at Cardinal Classic
After a pair of middling tournament finishes to begin the season, the Wolves kicked it up a notch last weekend in Tacoma.
Sequim High’s wrestling crew edged Steilacoom by two points for the team points title at the Cardinal Classic in Tacoma on Dec. 18, getting one individual title (Dakota Hinton at 171 pounds) and placing five grapplers in the finals.
Sequim coach Len Borchers said that as soon as the winners were announced his Wolves grabbed the trophy and started singing the school fight song.
“A good day,” Borchers said. “I thought we’d have a chance to be in the top half.”
Hinton pinned Ramsey Davis of Washington in the second period of the finals despite giving up a pair of takedowns.
“He’s a lot more resourceful (this season),” Borchers said.
At 189 pounds, Chris Falkey rebounded from a first-round loss to take third place. At 215 pounds, Emilio Perete-Colin reached the finals before falling to Stone Hart of Timberline, earning second place.
Heavyweight Clay Charley also advanced to the finals, dropping a 4-2 decision to champion Jack Newhouse of Steilacoom.
Filling in for his injured brother Kawika, Sequim 160-pounder Lopaka Yasumura battled to the finals before dropping a 6-2 decision to Colemann Byrd of Franklin Pierce.
Freshman Royhon Agostine (103 pounds) picked up his first varsity wins and placed sixth.
Borchers said he was particularly impressed with several of his middleweight grapplers, including 152-pounder Dorian Halverson, 140-pounder Winston Babb and 135-pounders Derek Fruin and Luke Mooney.
Fruin was second and Mooney took third in the division, both falling to champ Tyler Johnston of Steilacoom.
Babb took third at the Cardinal Classic, with his lone loss coming to weight class champion Austin Kandor of Tahoma.
“We call him the ‘Ener-gizer Bunny,’” Borchers said.
Halverson, a first-year wrestler with about five weeks experience, placed sixth.
“We showed him things on Monday that he was using on the mat on Saturday,” Borchers said. “(He’s) a quick learner and competitor.”
Sequim is at the Battle for the Axe tourney in Port Angeles on Dec. 22.
Sequim travels to the North Mason Classic tourney in Belfair on Dec. 29 and to Kingston for a league meet on Jan. 5.
Wolves trump Trojans
A key disqualification and some hard-earned wins helped unranked Sequim knock off No. 13-ranked Olympic 42-33 in Silverdale on Dec. 14.
“Our kids really stepped up and got the job done,” Borchers said. “We didn’t expect to win, just to be competitive.”
Already without wrestlers in the 112-, 119- and 125-pound weight classes when they stepped off the bus, the Wolves figured to have an uphill battle against one of the top 2A teams in the state. But the Wolves got a break when Olympic forfeited a pair of weights as well, at 189 and 285 pounds.
Sequim got another break as former state champion Caleb O’Halek wasn’t in Olympic’s lineup in the 171-pound division, and Sequim’s Dakota Hinton took advantage with a first round pin of D.J. Ungren.
At 215 pounds, Sequim’s Perete-Colin put a lateral drop on Ryan Odell for a first-round pin and after Olympic’s heavyweight class forfeit, Sequim took a 24-9 lead.
The Trojans, however, got a pin at 103 pounds and six points for Sequim’s three weight-class forfeits at 112, 119 and 125 pounds to take a 27-24 lead.
At 130 pounds, Trojan Cody Yeik took charge of Sequim’s Austin Middleton from the opening whistle, building a 12-6 lead on six takedowns. But Yeik reportedly slammed Middleton’s right shoulder to the mat, and referee Mike Pizzuto called a penalty. Middleton was not able to continue and was awarded the match by injury default.
Sequim opened the lead to 36-27 after Fruin (135 pounds) won an 11-6 decision and Babb (140) edged his Trojan foe 6-4, thanks to a third-period takedown.