The Orcas Island Wrestling Club traveled to Stanwood on Jan. 6, where 12 of its youth wrestlers competed. The tournament was sanctioned by the USA Wrestling Association and hosted 38 club teams and around 400 wrestlers.
The team left the island on Friday evening so that it could make the registrations and weigh-ins at 7 a.m. on Saturday. The hosting organization used the data the create four-person brackets, allowing each wrestler to be guaranteed three matches with similar age and weight opponents. The matches, consisting of three 2-minute rounds, started at 10 a.m. and continued until 4 p.m.
Declan Kaspersky, 5, was the first to go in his very first tournament match. He lost the first two matches by getting pinned. He won the third match with a score of 8-5.
Jaden Rodriguez, 7, joined the club only a few weeks ago and lost his first match with a final score of 5-20. He lost his second with a score of 2-12 but won his third match with a score of 13-2.
Jason Rodriguez, 7, lost his first match by points, won his second match with a pin and also won his third match by a score of 13-4.
Drew Bond, 7, lost his first match by getting pinned but went the distance in his next two matches. They were both good matches with scores of 8-11 and 4-7.
Isaak Segault, 8, lost his first match by getting pinned in the 2nd round, then going all three rounds in his next match, losing 0-3, and had to forfeit his third match due to a scheduling conflict with another activity.
Tim Malo, 8, won his first match with a pin, lost his second match 1-6, and won his third match 4-3.
Zade Pechacek, 8, won all three of his matches. His first was by a score of 12-10, his second and third matches with a pin. In his second match, he threw his opponent with a head and arm and pinned him in just 28 seconds!
Tom Malo, 8, lost his first match 11-1, won his second match 6-0, and his third match by points as well.
Andre Kasperski, 9, won his first match with a series of cradles leading up to a score of 15-3. He won his second match with a 2nd round cradle for a pin and lost his third match with a score of 4-12.
Brandon, 9, was pinned in all three of his matches but he was able to make it to the second round in two of them by wrestling hard.
Chloe Clement,11, lost her first match with a score of 1-16. She was pinned in her next two matches.
Joseph Pacasum, 12, lost his first match 7-8, won his second match with a pin, and lost his third match 4-8.
David Pacasum, 16, also wrestles for the club and showed up to support his team, but was not able to compete in the tournament as there was no age/weight class for him.
Out of 36 total matches, the Orcas team won 14 with two athletes taking first place, three taking second place and three taking third in their respective age/weight classes. Zade Pechacek and Tim Malo earned first-place medals, Tom Malo, Andre Kasperski and Jason Rodriguez earned second-place medals. Declan Kasperski, Jaden Rodriguez and Joseph Pacasum won third. Overall in the tournament, the team placed seventeenth of 38.
The Orcas Island Wrestling Club made a good showing at this tournament and plans to attend a couple more before the season is over. It is a major win for the club just to show up for these tournaments, and praise to the kids for getting out there on the mats with kids they don’t know and more than a thousand coaches, parents and spectators watching and cheering them on. The club would like to thank the parents and the community for making this possible with the money generated by fundraising efforts.