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WRHS WRESTLING: Hornets sail through tough contests
A run against highly-regarded Enumclaw, a win over tough Bonney Lake Thursday and a fourth-place finish Saturday at the W.F. West Bearcat Classic gave White River High’s wrestling team a boost.
“We don’t have a shoe-in for a state title,” coach Joe Klein said of his 14 varsity wrestlers and No. 12-ranked team. “But we’ve got a group that’s getting better each week.
“We’re not a team of superstars. When you go up and down the lineup we don’t have a Sam Bauer or a Jason Gray, but we’ve got a lot of solid kids that we can count on.”
The Hornets proved that Saturday finishing fourth behind host W.F. West, top-ranked Class 3A Yelm and Centralia, and doing it with one wrestler in the finals, Richard Geddes at 103 pounds.
Geddes finished second to Dillon Harris of Yelm.
“We placed 10 guys in the top six,” Klein said. “We’re not too far out of the money.”
Six White River wrestlers finished third – Austin Shirey, 135 pounds, Alec Williams, 140, Anthony Moore, 145, Austin Bethel, 160, Jeff Kisner, 171, and Chase Myers, 215. Brandon Short, 119, Caden Pugmire, 152, and Dave Meagher, 285, placed fifth.
Thursday, the Hornets handily put away Bonney Lake 46-22 to even their South Puget Sound League 3A record at 2-2.
White River won nine of the matches, including four by pin, Short at 125 pounds, Williams, 140, Kisner, 171, and Short, 189.
The Hornets scored five more team points on Carl Klein’s technical fall at 103 pounds and picked up two major decisions, Robert Kautzman at 130 pounds and Shirey at 135. Bethel added a decision at 160 and Myers earned six points from a forfeit.
The annual mat battle between Enumclaw and White River Jan. 6 was a hard-fought affair. Enumclaw jumped to an early lead, survived a mid-match flurry from White River, then won three of the final five matches to take a 33-25 victory. After Enumclaw built an early 18-3 lead, the decision for White River coming from Jeff Kisner’s overtime win at 171 pounds, White River rallied with pins by Myers and Meagher, followed by a major decision by Geddes, to take a one-point advantage.
Brandon Short won a 5-3 overtime match at 119 to keep the Hornets in the contest before EHS ran ahead.
Enumclaw had the advantage down the stretch and pulled out the win. Crucial to the victory were major decisions by David Kingman, Lucus Somera and Hunter File.
“That was fun,” Klein said talking about fans watching wrestling at its finest. “That’s just good wrestling with that much intensity. We were planning to win some and keep it close and we did that.”
Our kids wrestled their butts off. They were tough.”