Arlington grapplers fall to Kamiak | SLIDESHOW

ARLINGTON — Eagle wrestling brought a lineup heavy on freshmen and sophomores into their Jan. 10 match against a Kamiak squad of four juniors and three seniors.

The Knights used their superior size and skill to pin Eagle after Eagle en route to a 45-30 win.

The match was only the first of a gauntlet of matches before Arlington heads to Districts.

“We’re walking into Lake Stevens and Snohomish,” Arlington Head Coach Rick Iversen said. “They’re miles over our heads. It’s a project and a reality. It’s a matter of time before we’re competing with top talent.”

Arlington freshman Gareth Henderson pinned Knights freshman Jordan Mochmar with seven seconds remaining in the first round of the 220-pound bout.

Kamiak junior 285-pounder Miles Mason pinned Eagle freshman Tyler Lindberg after 39 seconds.

Eagle 106-pound freshman Clayton Hunter outlasted freshman Jacob Lockhart for a technical fall after three rounds, 18-2.

The Knights took a 113-pound bout via forfeit and tied the score at 12-12.

Kamiak 120-pound junior Joshua Heitzman pinned Eagle sophomore Skyler Wren after 30 seconds in the first round. Knights sophomore Tyler Frisch followed with a pin of Eagle junior Jared Brock-Anderson after 54 seconds.

Arlington sophomore Conner Gonzalez broke the trend with a major decision over Kamiak 132-pound senior Zach Regan, 13-3, after three rounds.

Sophomore Scotty Bardell earned a 7-3 decision over Knights 138-pound senior Braedan Graika to help bring the Eagles back. Jacob Butler pinned Arlington 145-pound freshman Erik Davis, though, after 1:07 and Kamiak 152-pound junior Kyle Sullivan felled Eagle junior Sam Davidson after 1:05.

Eagle 160-pound senior Shawn Berg brought Arlington back into the match with a pin of freshman Conner Mitchell after 1:44 in the second round, but the Knights’ 170-pound sophomore Tyler Kunard won a 5-2 decision over Chris Nelson and 182-pound senior Collin Anderson pinned Jake Ferro after a minute in the second round to quell the comeback.

“(Arlington 160-pound senior) Brandon Chase and Chris Nelson have been our crowd pleasers,” Iversen said. “The crowd just loves them. They bring a lot of heart and they’re fun to watch.”

Arlington 195-pound senior Blake McPherson stayed unbeaten  when he pinned sophomore Henry Reid after 20 seconds in the second round.

“Blake listens in practice, he works on his moves and he’s a tough takedown wrestler,” Arlington assistant coach Barry Knott said. “He goes for the pin at all times and he has strength, confidence and aggressiveness.”

Don’t count out the Eagles just yet. There’s more to wrestling than just a conference record.

“Wrestling is a sport of two seasons,” Iversen said. “Sometimes you have a good dual meet team but not a good tournament team — you’ve got balance, but no champions. My past, and Barry’s too, is full of league titles. It’s easy to forget that what the crowd loves is to beat a team five miles away.”

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