Wrestling: Early Rounds Unkind to Area Grapplers at Mat Classic XXX

W.F. West’s Mason Morones and Cesar Brizuela, from Wapato, spin like tops during their first-round match at Mat Classic XXX on Friday.

Title Hopes: Six Local Wrestlers Still in the Running for State Titles

By Jordan Nailon

jnailon@chronline.com

Out of 37 local wrestlers who scrapped their way to Mat Classic XXX, only six are left standing with a shot at a championship after the first day of competition. In wrestling, though, as in life, there is little time to feel sorry for oneself in the face of misfortune, and another eight area wrestlers were able to hold just tight enough to qualify for another day of top-flight wrestling in the dank confines of the Tacoma Dome.

Additionally, as a team Adna is hanging around with 40.5 points to sit in fifth place on the 1B/2B team leaderboard, while Centralia was positioned ninth in the 2As with 28 team points and W.F. West was sitting at 18th as a team in the with 17 points.

On Friday, Adna wrestlers Lucas Ashley and Ashton Dowell both earned spots in the semifinals, as did Levi Walters of W.F. West, along with Mykka McAllister, Tristan Dickey and Izz Almontes of Centralia.

Ashley, a 145 pound sophomore, defeated Bodie Paul of Liberty Bell 15-7 in his quarterfinal match after enjoying a bye in the first round thanks to his Regional championship last weekend. He is scheduled to wrestle top ranked Rylan Anderson of Reardon at 10:45 a.m. on Saturday.

Dowell, a 170-pound junior, also enjoyed a bye in the first round and then defeated Seth HIll of Northwest Christian by a score of 4-2 to punch his ticket to the semifinals. He is scheduled to wrestle Ozius Harden of Reardon at 11:15 a.m. on Saturday.

Levi Walters, a 120-pound senior, was the lone Bearcat to qualify for the semifinals after defeating Brennon McDermott of East Valley (Spokane) 7-5 in the first round and then pinning Chrys Cenkush of Orting in the first period of their quarterfinal affair. Walters is scheduled to wrestle Haide Drury of Toppenish at 10:05 a.m. on Saturday.

McAllister, a 132-pound senior, pinned Jacob Kessinger of East Valley (Spokane) to get things going on Friday and then defeated Zach Rowe of Steilacoom by a score of 7-3 to clinch his trip to the semifinals. He is scheduled to wrestle at 10:25 a.m. on Saturday.

McAllister’s first round win was no cakewalk, though, as his opponent went tit-for-tat with him during the first period and a half.

“After he took me down a few times I got a little bit nervous. That’s when I had to turn it on,” said McAllister. “Tactically is the only way I am able to keep up with most of these guys. Some of them are a lot stronger than I am and they’re cutting a lot more than I am.”

Dickey, a 170-pound senior Tiger, pinned Alan Coumbs of Cheney in his opening match and then defeated Vijay Paul Singh of Tyee by a score of 4-3 in the quarterfinals. He is slated to wrestle Kiran Srikanth of Pullman at 11:15 a.m. on Saturday.

Almotes, a 220-pound junior Tiger, pinned Devine Tsuffis of Burlington Edison in the first round and then outlasted Logan Reser of West Valley (Spokane) by a score of 5-2 to earn his way to the semifinals. He is set to wrestle Evan Barger of Orting on Saturday at 11:45 a.m.

“It’s an incredible feeling,” Almontes said, “Especially for this being my first time here, and to get to go to the semis.”

He noted that his quarterfinal opponent was a serviceable foe with loads of strength and a penchant for a good hip toss. Still, the Tiger was able to keep his wits in order to hold on for the win and a coveted trip to the semifinals.

“I’m surprised just how calm and relaxed I felt out there,” Almotes explained.

In the girls tournament Cheyeann Meyer of Adna was the only wrestler to make it out of the first day inside the T-Dome. Meyer pinned Moliee Weddle of Grandview in the second frame of her first-round match. In the quarterfinals she fell 11-3 to Claire Dicugno of White River but then bounced back to defeat Gabriella Mata of Mt. Baker by a score of 5-2 in order to stay alive. On Saturday she will start off by wrestling Gali Valencia of Graham-Kapowsin at 10:35 a.m.

For W.F. West’s 106-pound spitfire senior, Roehre Cunningham, things did not go as planned and he was forced to fight for survival following a 6-4 opening round loss to Sammy Flores of Ephrata. Cunningham’s coach, Jamie Rakevich, said immediately that he was confident Cunningham wouldn’t stay down for long.

“I think we just got a little too excited and burnt out after the first two rounds. That happens to senior guys sometimes,” said Rakevich. “He nearly died riding a bull two years ago, so I think he will survive this.”

Indeed, Cunningham bounced back with a dominating 12-0 victory over Chance Edwards of Lindbergh before defeating Anjelo Pangelina of Olympic in order to earn a spot on the mat on Saturday. His first match is scheduled for 9:45 a.m. on Saturday.

Jayden Lancaster of Rochester, a 145-pound sophomore also bounced back from a first round loss in order to land a date on the mat at 10:45 a.m. on Saturday. Lancaster’s consolation round victories were both pins.

In the 1B/2B bracket Aaron Slape, a 138-pound senior from Adna, enjoyed a bye in the first round before falling 10-0 to Caleb Cole of Reardean. A pin in the second period of his consolation match set him up for another contest at 10:35 a.m. on Saturday. Braxton Dowell, a 152-pound senior from Adna pinned his opponent in the first round before falling by a score of 2-1 to Ony Nichols of Lake Roosevelt in the quarterfinals. Dowell then pinned his consolation opponent to earn a spot in the 10:55 a.m. ticket on Saturday.

Matthew Slape, a 160-pound junior from Adna, had a bye in the first round but was pinned by Joe Peasley of Wilbur-Creston in the quarterfinals. However, he bounced back in his consolation match with a pin to lock in his match at 11:05 a.m. on Saturday. Kameron Perry, a 182-pound senior from Adna, also had a first round bye before being pinned by Zane Scott of Orting in the quarterfinals. Perry bested Chase Flynn of South Bend 17-6 in their loser-out match in order to secure his place in the 11:25 a.m. match on Saturday. Hunter Fields, a 182-pound junior from Adna will also wrestle on Saturday at 11:25 a.m.  He defeated Chase Flynn of South Bend by a score of 15-0 in the first round before being pinned in the quarterfinals. Fields recovered by pinning Leonard Heules of Colfax to survive to Saturday. Dusty Thayer, a 113-pound sophomore from Winlock, was the final local to make it to Saturday thanks to a first round pin and a consolation round pin that sandwiched a points loss to Nolan Burrill of Colfax. Thayer is scheduled to start things off on Saturday at 9:45 a.m.

Many area wrestlers had their seasons end on the big stage Friday.

In the girls bracket Faith Halseth (125) from Centralia fell by by pin and Xylia Warner of W.F. West (135) was pinned by Emily Carroll of Wenatchee and then registered a pin of her own over Rebekah Rollins of Mt. Baker. However, Dempsi Talkington of River View pinned Warner to end her tournament.

In the 1B/2B bracket Winlock’s Joshua Cureton was pinned twice and Sam Howden of Winlock lost by points in his first match before falling by pin in his consolation match. Napavine teammates Brad Yarbrough, Chase McCarter and Dustin Krause were each pinned twice on Friday. Trey Rego of Toledo was pinned in the first round before losing by points in consolation and Cody Deguise of Winlock lost twice by points. Luke Wellander pinned Ted LEster of Rainier in the first round before losing by points twice in a row to end his career. Aydan Costin of Napavine was defeated twice by points and Michael Echtle of Toledo lost by points to open the day before being pinned to end his appearance at the Mat Classic XXX.

In the 1A tournament Tyrick Weyrauch of Tenino, a 195-pound senior, defeated Max Muffett of La Center 11-7 to get things going but then lost to Scout Walker of Colville by a score of 7-6 when Walker mustered a last second reversal. Weyrauch’s tournament came to an end when he lost to Jose Mendoza of Kiona Benton. Dakota Whitaker, a 145-pound senior from Tenino, was pinned twice on Friday as was Tenino’s heavyweight freshman, Robbi Marti.

The 2A tournament was unkind to a number of area wrestlers as well. Darren Gray of W.F. West lost by points to open his tournament and then won his next match by 5-1 before falling in another pints decision to end his weekend. Juan Gaspar of Centralia was pinned and then bested by points and Caleb Walters of W.F. West lost by points in both of his matches. Davyi Gaspar of Centralia was pinned in his first match of the day before defeating his next opponent 8-7 and then losing his final match by points decision. W.F. West teammates Mason Morones lost by points in both of his mathes and Carver Brennan was pinned twice.

Up to date information on the Mat Classic XXX can be found online at www.wiaa.com.

Day 1 results for the local wrestlers at Mat Classic XXX, which started Friday in the Tacoma Dome and continues Saturday:

Girls

125: Cheyeann Meyer (Adna) pinned Moliee Weddle (Grandview), 3:13; Meyer def. by Claire Dicugno (White River), 11-3; Meyer def. Gabriella Mata (Mt. Baker), 5-2; Meyer vs. Gali Valencia (Graham-Kapowsin), 10:35 a.m. Saturday

125: Faith Halseth (Centralia) pinned by Maya Spencer (Ephrata), :58; Halseth pinned by Gabriella Mata (Mt. Baker), 4:49

135: Xylia Warner (W.F. West) pinned by Emily Carroll (Wenatchee), 4:37; Warner pinned Rebekah Rollins (Mt. Baker), 2:29; Warner pinned by Dempsi Talkington (River View), 2:23

1B/2B

106: Joshua Cureton (Winlock), first-round bye; pinned by Kolby Sisk (Colfax), :24; Cureton pinned by Robert Thomas (Lake Roosevelt), :13

113: Dusty Thayer (Winlock) pinned Derrek Hollister (Tonasket), :50; Thayer def. by Nolan Burrill (Colfax), 17-6; Thayer pins Matthew Hess (Mary Walker), 2:15; Thayer vs. Cody Field (Oroville), 9:55 a.m. Saturday

113: Sam Howsden (Winlock) def. by Keegan Kemmer (Ilwaco), 19-3; Howsden pinned by Cody Field (Oroville), 2:39

120: Brad Yarbrough (Napavine) pinned by Sean Burt (Davenport), 1:47; Yarbrough pinned by Jose Cortez (Tonasket), 1:24

120: Chase McCarter (Napavine) pinned by Jose Cortez (Tonasket), :44; McCarter pinned by Sean Burt (Davenport), 2:45

126: Dustin Krause (Napavine) def. by Kolby Slate (Colfax), 9-2; Krause pinned by Gannon Whelden (Ilwaco), 1:15

132: Trey Rego (Toledo) pinned by Carlos Norris (Dayton), 2:29; Rego def. by Tristan Hamlin (Raymond), 10-4

132: Cody Deguise (Winlock) def. by Preston Lawhead (South Bend), 5-1; Deguise def. by Rielan Bretz (Tonasket), 7-1

138: Aaron Slape (Adna), first-round bye; def. by Caleb Cole (Reardan), 10-0; Slape pinned Wyatt Zielinski (Almira-Coulee-Hartline), 3:55; Slape vs. Chase Clark (Kettle Falls), 10:35 a.m.

145: Lucas Ashley (Adna), first-round bye; def. Bodie Paul (Liberty Bell), 15-7; Ashley vs. Rylan Anderson (Reardan), 10:45 a.m. Saturday

145: Luke Wellander (Adna) pinned Ted Lester (Rainier), 5:38; Wellander def. by Gunnar Hilderbrandt (Republic), 4-1; Wellander def. by Caden Noha (St. John Endicott), 9-4

152: Braxton Dowell (Adna) pinned Bailey Hunton (Davenport), 3:25; Dowell def. by Tony Nichols (Lake Roosevelt), 2-1; Dowell pinned Julio Alatorre (Tonasket), 1:29; Dowell vs. Lucas Reuwsaat, 10:55 a.m.

160: Matthew Slape (Adna), first-round bye; pinned by Joe Peasley (Wilbur-Creston), 2:24; Slape pins Greg Petit (Ilwaco), 1:41; Slape vs. Colby Hutchinson, 11:05 a.m.

170: Aydan Costin (Napavine) def. by Eli Haynes (Kalama), 12-5; Costin def. by Seth Hill (NWC), 5-3

170: Ashton Dowell (Adna), first-round bye; Dowell def. Seth Hill (NWC), 4-2; Dowell vs. Ozius Harden (Reardan), 11:15 a.m. Saturday

182: Kameron Perry (Adna), first-round bye; Perry pinned by Zane Scott (Oroville), :36; Perry def. Chase Flynn (South Bend), 17-6; Perry vs. David Hoover, 11:25 a.m.

182: Hunter Fields (Adna) def. Chase Flynn (South Bend), 15-0; Fields pinned by Ethan Landt (Reardan), :55; Fields pins Leonard Huels (Colfax), 3:45; Fields vs. Mason Payne (Reardan), 11:25 a.m.

220: Michael Echtle (Toledo) def. by Hunter Olmstead (Concrete), 18-3; Echtle pinned by Augie Allenbach (Colfax), :43

1A

145: Dakota Whitaker (Tenino) pinned by Daniel Claros (Cascade), 1:45; pinned by Daniel Bonilla (Royal), 2:12

195: Tyrick Weyrauch (Tenino) def. Max Muffett (La Center), 11-7; Weyrauch def. by Scout Walker (Colville), 7-6; Weyrauch pinned by Jose Mendoza (Kiona-Benton), 4:44

285: Robby Marti (Tenino) pinned by Tytan Duncan (Deer Park), 4:15; Marti pinned by Cristian Trujillo-Barajas (Highland), 3:50

2A

106: Roehre Cunningham (W.F. West) def. by Sammy Flores (Ephrata); Cunningham def. Chance Edwards (Lindbergh), 12-0; Cunningham def. Anjelo Pangelinan (Olympic), 7-2; Cunningham vs. John Pham (Renton), 9:45 a.m.

106: Juan Gaspar (Centralia) pinned by Uriel Garcia (Wapato), 3:46; Gaspar def. by Trey Wilkerson (Orting), 11-7

106: Darren Gray (W.F. West) def. by Chris Melo (Othello), 11-3; Gray def. Josh Perry (Bellingham), 5-1; Gray def. by John Pham (Renton), 6-0

113: Caleb Walters (W.F. West) def. by Michael Villeia (Steilacoom), 10-2; Walters def. Indiana Casas (Bellingham), 19-10; Walters def. by Stephen Aguilar (Wapato), 6-0

113: Eddie Matias (Centralia) def. by Nate Belcourt (White River), 12-9; Matias def. by Gonzalo Aleman (Toppenish), 8-7

120: Levi Walters (W.F. West) def. Brennon McDermott (East Valley Spokane), 7-5; Walters pinned Chrys Cenkush (Orting), 1:05; Semifinals vs. Haiden Drury (Toppenish), 10:05 a.m. Saturday

120: Davyi Gaspar (Centralia) pinned by Jesus Rodriguez (Wapato), 5:14; Gaspar def. Daniel Basden (Port Angeles), 8-7; Gaspar def. by Chrys Cenkush (Orting), 11-5

132: Mykka McAllister (Centralia) pins Jacob Kessinger (East Valley Spokane), 3:16; McAllister def. Zach Rowe (Steilacoom), 7-3; Semifinals vs. Alexei Rubio (Toppenish), 10:25 a.m.

132: Mason Marones (W.F. West) def. Aaron Fisher (Burlington Edison), 9-5; Marones def. by Bryson Anderson, 10-0

145: Jayden Lancaster (Rochester) def. by Alex Vaca (Wapato), 13-2; Lancaster pins Arthur Adair (Liberty/Issaquah), 3:24; Lancaster pins Alex Brady (Steilacoom), 4:42; Lancaster vs. Isaiah Ervin, 10:45 a.m.

152: Carver Brennan (W.F. West) pinned by Nate Moore (White River), 2:14; Brennan pinned by Kevin Stokes (Lakewood), 2:04

170: Tristen Dickey (Centralia) pins Alan Coumbs (Cheney), 5:42; Dickey def. Vijay Paul Singh (Tyee), 4-3; Semifinals vs. Kiran Srikanth (Pullman), 11:15 a.m.

220: Izz Almotes (Centralia) pins Devin Tsuffis (Burlington Edison), 4:59; Almontes def. Logan Reser (West Valley/Spokane), 5-2; Semifinals vs. Evan Barger (Orting), 11:45 a.m.

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