By Coach Rich Valdez
We came into this year's Regional tournament very confident. Our girls are peaking at just the right time. They are focused and motivated. Honestly we were looking to roll in here and win this thing and be regional champs to go with our sub- regional title. The girls have just put in a lot of quality work and have wrestled themselves into a place where they are ready to win.
Federal Way came to compete. They took us by 11 points. They wrestled tough. Congratulations to them and Coach Mango over there.
We had some great matches and a great tournament. First year Heavyweight standout Hannah Lewandowski pinned what has been the top heavyweight all year , KC Moulden of Enumclaw, in the Finals to become a Regional Champ. We just cant say enough about this young lady. She is everything you could ask for in a wrestler.
Sam Mitchell once again impressed by winning a 3-0 decision over Jasmine Jones of Washington High and pinning two opponents in a total of 1:56 to become a Regional Champ.
Dylan Fagan ,who is going looking to make history this year by becoming White River's first 4 time state placer, had an incredible tournament this weekend. Dylan dropped a first round loss to Federal Way's Luaipou Lologo in a highscoring match that ended with Lologo pinning Fagan. It was a surprise to everyone when the standout senior dropped to the lower side of the bracket. But she came back on a tear and went on a dominating pinning spree taking out each of her next three opponents. Top seed Daiza Vann of Todd Beamer in 1:59, Genesis Pina of Emerald Ridge at 1:39 and scrappy freshman standout DJ White from Lincoln in 2:29 to take home 3rd place and head to the Tacoma Dome next week to try and join only 5 other female wrestlers in all of Washington who have become 4 time state placers.
We told our girls coming into this tournament that someone was going to have to step up and win a big match in the first round and knock off a top seed for our plans to succeed and senior captain Jamie Meagher answered the call. She pinned the top seed Lulu Kenman of Todd Beamer at 137 pounds in 2:46. She lost her next match to the eventual champion Julianna Trujillo of Lakes then went on a run through the lower side of the bracket pinning her next opponent in 2:30 before rematching with Kenman and winning an exciting overtime match 6-4 to bring in 3rd place.
Kylie Norton recorded a fall in 1:08 seconds in her first round and another fall in her 3rd match at 1:54. She lost to finalist Cormier of Enumclaw and Brooks of Spanaway in the 3rd/4th place match to secure her spot at state.
The regional tournament is always a competition with extreme emotional highs and lows. It's where top kids either move on to the big show or their season ends.
I want to make note and give credit to Morgan Shirey, Kendra Blue , McKinsie Shirey and Emma Walker who didn't make it to state this year but contributed all year long wrestled incredibly tough and helped make this team what they are.