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Wolves send six to districts
by MICHAEL DASHIELL
Sequim coach Len Borchers knew this tourney would be a tough test for his pack of Wolves.
And so it was.
Sequim placed fifth in the seven-team sub-regional tournament in Port Angeles last weekend, sending six grapplers on to districts and another four as alternates.
All of Sequim’s wrestlers finished third or fourth, meaning they’ll face tough No. 1 or No. 2 seeds to open the district tournament, set for Feb. 12 at Franklin Pierce High School in Tacoma, with the state finals looming the following weekend.
“I was hoping to get a couple more kids (through),” Borchers said.
Battling his way through a tough 135-pound weight class was Derek Fruin, who went 3-1 and earned two pins on his way to a third-place finish.
“He handled his third-/fourth-place match well,” Borchers said, noting Fruin’s 9-0 win against Kingston’s Michael Lujan.
At 130 pounds, Austin Middleton also went 3-1 and picked up three pins on his way to third place.
“He’s wrestling real well right now,” Borchers said.
Emilio Perete-Colin took third at 215 pounds with a 3-1 mark, also picking up three pins, while Clay Charley was 2-1 and took third at 285 pounds.
“I thought Clay might have a chance to get into the finals,” Borchers said, but the junior heavyweight fell 2-0 to rival Daniel Jenkins of Port Angeles in the semifinals.
Cody Field scored two pins and placed fourth at 145 pounds while Dakota Hinton, wrestling in perhaps the toughest weight class (171) of the tourney, also went 2-2 and placed fourth overall.
A number of Sequim grapplers finished fifth in their respective weight brackets, including Luke Mooney (who went 4-2 at 135 pounds), Winston Babb (4-2 at 140), Brian Bearden (3-2 at 215) and Jacob Cooper (1-2 at 285).
Kingston edged Klahowya by five points for the sub-regional tourney title, seeing 12 athletes earn top-four placings at the tourney.
“Kingston just had the depth,” Borchers said.
The district tournament figures to be quite a hurdle for the remaining Wolves’ pack, as top wrestlers from Steilacoom, Clover Park, Fife, Franklin Pierce, Washington, White River, Eatonville and Sumner join the fray.
“We’ll be gearing up (but) we just haven’t seen many of those kids over there,” Borchers said.
For the Wolves who didn’t qualify for districts, Borchers said he asks them to stay on and help their teammates stay well prepared for their next tourney.
“(They) become practice partners for (qualifiers). It’s a chance to work on a few things, process a few things they learned at this tournament — especially the underclassmen.”
MatClassic, Washington state’s prep wrestling finals, is set for Feb. 18-19 at the Tacoma Dome.
Reach Michael Dashiell at email@example.com.