CHS wrestlers will complete their 1A Trico League dual meet season tonight at Stevenson, with matchups against La Center and Kalama.
The Bruins held their final home meet last Thursday, on their Senior Night, versus Stevenson. The meet featured a giant spotlight hanging over the single mat in place of regular gym lighting.
Before the action got under way, the team recognized its three seniors, Austin Morris (145), Catalina Suarez (145), and Regina Bell (130), for their contributions to the CHS wrestling program.
The meet itself featured a number of forfeits, particularly in the upper weight classes, with CHS being the primary beneficiary of those unfilled lineup spots.
In actual matches, Columbia High won four of seven. Fletcher Andrews got CHS started by beating opposing 126-pounder Jesse Hoffberger by technical fall (18-2) at 3:30 in the second period.
James Bell racked up a 9-0 lead before he pinned Sam Jones at 1:55 to win at 132.
The CHS run continued at 138 when Miguel Lemmon defeated Brody Michael by fall at 1:39. Michael scored a takedown late in the period, but Lemmon executed a reversal that resulted in the pin.
Morris made it four in a row for CHS with a pin of James Ryan at 2:52 of their 145-pound bout.
Eli Bell kicked things off for CHS at 120 pounds with a free-scoring 17-15 loss to Braeden Waymire. Tylan Webster (152) and Tristan Rosander (160) also wrestled for CHS but both lost by fall.
On Jan. 15, the Bruins attended a double dual meet at Castle Rock that also included King’s Way.
Columbia earned a split on the day, beating King’s Way 48-18 and losing 72-6 to Castle Rock.
The Bruins received seven forfeits and gave up two against the Knights, who have only four wrestlers. In the two weights where the teams matched up, they split the decisions.
Tylan Webster pinned his 152-pound opponent at 1:52. Declan Liddiard wrestled into the second period before falling at the 3-minute mark.
Against Castle Rock, the Bruins forfeited five weight classes, matched up in nine, but won just one bout. That came when Alex Medina pinned his opponent with 12 seconds left in the third period. Medina set it up with a reversal that gave him a 9-8 lead in the waning seconds.
“Castle Rock has every weight class full, and three of the matches we wrestled were against opponents who are ranked in the state. And they have nine wrestlers who are ranked in the top 10 in the state 1A,” Bruins Coach Stoner Bell said. “This was a difficult meet for our first-year wrestlers. However, most of our wrestlers were able to score points against their opponents, which is a positive first step when wrestling a team with the experience Castle Rock possesses.”
Morris lost a tough 4-2 decision at 145 pounds in which most of the scoring occurred in the first period (two Rocket takedowns versus one Morris escape).
Liddiard also gave a strong performance at 170 before dropping a 12-9 decision. He got down 7-2 in the first period but came back in the second with six points (one on a penalty, followed by a 2-point reversal, then 3 points for a near fall) to take an 8-7 lead.
Liddiard’s opponent escaped the CHS freshman’s hold at the outset of the third period to tie the score at 8, then took Liddiard down for a 10-8 lead. A penalty on the Rocket gave Liddiard a small break, but his opponent clinched the win with a 2-point near fall.
On Jan. 10, Morris (145), Myles Moon (113), and James Bell (132) received consolation medals for third-place finishes at the Washougal River Invitational.
The same weekend, Regina Bell captured third place at 130 at a two-day tournament in Kelso that featured 32-girl brackets. Bell lost her semifinal to the eventual champion, but finished with a 5-1 record.
Catalina Suarez placed sixth at 155 because she had to default her final match due to a shoulder injury that has left her day-to-day.
Alexis McCafferty (110) and Brittany McCoy (140) each won one of three matches but were not factors in the medal count.