It’s on to regional wrestling on Saturday for Columbia High boy and girl wrestlers. Seven CHS boys will be in action at the WIAA Region 2 1A tournament in Castle Rock. The meet gets under way at 10 a.m. The 1A Trico League’s top four wrestlers per weight class will square off against the top four from the 1A Evergreen League. A total of 56 Mat Classic berths are available to the region (4x14 weight classes). One CHS girl will be in Olympia for the WIAA Region 3 meet. Four place finishers per weight class will move on to the Mat Classic, Feb. 15-16, in Tacoma. Wrestlers hit the mats for their first bouts at 10 a.m.

Columbia High boys

Payden Webster (120) and David Durham (285) captured individual championships last Saturday at the Trico/Sub-regional tournament in La Center. Jack Kelly (132), Sean Stennett (152), Josiah Nelson (182), Jose Evangelista (195), and Juan Acosta  (285) earned regional berths with topfour finishes. Webster beat Stevenson’s 10th-ranked Abiy LaCombe by fall at 4:44 of the third period in their bout for first place. Webster began his day with a first-period pin of Christian Kester of Stevenson (1:14.). He made it two in a row by dominating Asa Hamer of Castle Rock in the semifinal round (16-0 technical fall at 4:00). Durham won the heavy

weight belt with a pin of Castle Rock’s Michael Clark at 3:32 of the second period. Clark reached the final of the three-man bracket by pinning Acosta at the 3:15 mark. Acosta earned third by default. So did Josiah Nelson, who fell to Castle Rock’s Noah Shelton at 2:39 in another three-man bracket. Kelly scored a 14-6 major decision in his opening bout against Colby Cook of Castle Rock. He lost his semifinal to Hunter Mallicoat of La Center by fall at 3:50. Kelly stayed in the hunt for a regional berth with a 50 decision over Sammy Sosa of Stevenson in a consolation semifinal. In the bout for third place, Kelly wrestled Andrew Garcia of Stevenson. Garcia prevailed by decision, 5-3. “In my opinion, Jack Kelly was in the toughest bracket at the tournament,” Bruins Boys Coach Stoner Bell said. “The bracket was relatively full and there were several good wrestlers in the bracket.” Evangelista placed fourth in a four-man bracket. He lost both of his matches by fall (at :43 and :28 seconds,

respectively, to Peyton Watts and Noel Perez, both of Castle Rock.) Stennett punched his ticket to the Region 2 meet with a pin of Castle Rock’s Parker LaBeau at 2:52 of their consolation bout. He lost the match for third place by fall to Jason Huber of Stevenson. CHS’s Seth Miller pinned Parker LaBeau of Castle Rock at 2:17 of the second period to claim fifth place at 152 pounds and an alternate’s position to the Castle Rock region. Wulf Schroeder (113) and Dylan Muehlbauer (170) did not get to go to regionals. The former was out with a knee injury while the latter was sick with the flu.

Columbia High girls

Hailey Johnson led the Bruins to an 11th-place finish last Saturday at the 2019 Greater St. Helens League sub-regional meet in Brush Prairie. Johnson, ranked third at 120 pounds by Washington Wrestling Report, won the weight class with a pin of No. 12 Alejandra Ayers, of Union. Johnson, who received a

first-round bye in the nine girl bracket, pinned Kelso’s Anna Day and Hudson’s Bay’s Trinity Reeves in order to reach the championship. Johnson’s record after the meet stood at 25-3.

“She has pinned 24 of those wins and has not been pinned,” Bruins Girls Coach Dev Bell pointed out. Sydney Vargas and Maddie Deo finished tied fifth at 140 and 135, respectively.

“Neither Hailey nor Payden had any problems with any of their matches,” said Stoner Bell. “I think it would be a big upset for either of them not to make it through regionals to state.

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