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Eagles wrestlers win two and lose two at Wrestlerama
BELLINGHAM The Eagles wrestling team kicked off their 2006-07 season Saturday, Dec. 2, at Bellingham High School as part of the 35th annual George Yonlick Wrestlerama.
Yonlick coached at BHS for 25 years and began the tournament in 1971 before having it named in his honor.
I did all the damage I could do here, he said.
The kids needed a tournament, the former coach said matter-of-factly while watching a new generation of grapplers.
A total of 10 teams were scheduled to participate but three had to decline due to lack of sufficient practices after a snowstorm.
The seven team round-robin tournament pitted the Eagles against four different opponents Squalicum, BHS, Inglemoor and Ridgefield high schools.
AHS was scheduled to open their season Friday, Dec. 1, at Stanwood High School, but the match was postponed due to snow-related school closures.
The Eagles lost their first match of the day 51-23 to the Squalicum Storm and dropped their second one to the host Red Raiders 51-30.
The 3A Eagles evened their effort at .500 by defeating 4A Inglemoor of Kenmore 47-30 and then finishing their day with a 56-22 victory over 2A Ridgefield of Vancouver.
First-year coach Doug Byers said junior heavyweight Matt Dewitte won three of his four matches and wrestled really well.
He is amazingly quick for a short, squatty guy, Byers said.
Junior 189-lb. grappler Danny Pierce won his first match of the season 9-6 against his Storm opponent.
Pierce said he has been wrestling all three years at AHS and had never competed against the Squalicum teen.
He was a good guy and was pretty strong, but I was just able to hold him down, Pierce said afterward.
Wrestling is a unique sport in that the athletes can be slightly under their competing weight class but may not go over it.
For this main reason parents, friends and spectators saw teenagers doing something rather uncharacteristic among their peers walking around the gym eating bread, crackers, carrots and drinking water and Gatorade as nourishment.
Junior Jeremy Goheen prevailed 11-5 against his BHS opponent in the second match of the day.
After doing terrible in his season-opening loss to Squalicum, Goheen said he felt a little better after picking up his first victory.
It was nice to come out and get a win in the first tournament of the year, he said.
I usually have a bad start, but this seems to be a better start to this year.
Byers compared the teams two win-two loss outing to a football schedule, you usually see the most improvement between the first and second games.
He noted that of the four teams they were matched against BHS is one of the best teams in the state.
Were young and not being out-conditioned by anybody. Right now we are getting our guys used to wrestling against good high school wresting, and that comes with time.
The friendly first-year coach said the future line-up will probably be different due to some wrestlers that didnt have enough required practices after the recent snowstorm.
The Eagles take on their neighbors the Lakewood Cougars Thursday,
Dec. 7, in the cross-town showdown at LHS. Varsity begins at 7 p.m.