Columbia High wrestlers had their busiest week of the 2007-08 prep season last week, wrestling in four-team meets at Stevenson on Wednesday and at Tenino on Thursday.
The team's top performers were Seth Bell, who posted a 4-1 mark in the 171-pound weight class; Kevin Kreps (3-2 at 145 pounds), Jim Price (3-2 at 189), Kristien Contreras (3-2 at 215) and Max Wulff (2-2 at 285).
Teamwise, Columbia defeated the Hood River (Ore.) B Squad, 42-13; lost to Stevenson, 40-23; lost to Tenino, 66-15; beat Rainier, 42-36; and fell to Ocosta, 54-24.
Highlights from Columbia's matches against Stevenson included Bell's 12-9 decision over returning state qualifier Jesse Brown and Wulff's win by fall against heavyweight Wade Huett.
Bruins Coach Rich Polkinghorn called Bell's victory "gritty," and noted that Wulff, an exchange student from Germany, "had a fabulous performance in his win by pin" over Huett.
Polkinghorn also praised Kreps in his match against Thomas Eddy of Hood River--"an exciting match" won by Kreps, 11-6.
At Tenino, the match of the day came in the 189-pound weight class. In what wound up being the last match of the meet, CHS's Jim Price squared off against Justin Grant of Rainier.
"The dual meet was tied 36-36 going into the match and Jim pulled out a huge pin, his first of the season, first win of the season," Polkinghorn said, "and secured us the victory. I don't think Jim had any idea the fate of the dual rested on his shoulders; he just went out and took care of business."
Following is a breakdown of how other CHS wrestlers fared in last week's matches.
119--Brad Spring, 1-4. 125--Zac Halpern, 1-4. 130--Jon Belvin, 2-3. 135--Ethan Cranmer, 2-3. 140--Luis Roque 2-3 (including first win of season). 152--Connor Warner, 2-3.
160--William Hardisty, 1-4. 160--Chance Miller, 0-2. 171--Omar Ihmoda, 1-0. 171--Mike Crumpacker, 1-2. 215--Russ Bucher, 0-1. 215--Devin Bulick, 0-1.
Noted Polkinghorn: "Overall impressions are that we are continuing to improve. If we can get just a little better everyday, then that will be a job well done. The one area we need to improve upon, however, is our consistency; we have flashes of greatness followed by relapses, if you will. We need more of the great wrestling and less of the bad."
The Bruins will kick off the 2008 portion of their schedule next Thursday, Jan. 3, with a double dual meet in Miller Memorial Gym that will feature teams from White Salmon, Stevenson, Kalama and La Center.