Orcas wrestlers finish another season strong

by coaches Jason Dean a

nd Rob Harvey

The Orcas Island Wrestling Club wrapped up the 2022-2023 folkstyle wrestling season with a trip to Sedro Woolley for the WWKWL Novice State Championship Tournament on Feb. 5.

The event hosted 24 club teams from western Washington with hundreds of youths age 14 and under eager to show their skill on the mat. Twelve young wrestlers from the OIWC weighed in to compete in the tournament.

The brackets are developed after weigh-ins and match athletes of similar age and weight. It is important to mention that some brackets had only two wrestlers in the bracket and others had around 20 in this particular tournament. This will become apparent in the following summary of statistics for the OIWC wrestlers.

Elliot Wooding placed 2nd in the 6U PeeWee 28-38 division. He pinned his first opponent in the first round and lost to his second opponent by a decision of 15-10.

David Nunez placed 3rd in the 6U Pee Wee 53-57 bracket, losing by a 5-0 decision to his first opponent and then by a 17-0 technical fall to his second opponent.

Weston Wooding competed in the 8U Bantam 70 bracket and wrestled four matches. He won his first match by a decision of 9-3, lost by pin in his second, won his third with a pin and lost by getting pinned in his fourth match.

Aria Griffin in the 10U Intermediate 53 class received a bye in the first round, lost her second match with a 12-1 major decision, won by pining her third opponent in the second round and lost by a 4-0 decision.

Case Wolfe in the 10U 67 division lost by a fall to his first opponent, received a bye in the second round, and then lost by getting pinned in the second round.

McKinley Meester in the 10U Intermediate 67 bracket wrestled four matches. He lost his first by an 8-4 decision, received a bye in his second, won his third with a pin, and then lost by getting pinned in the second round in his last match.

Douglas Kirby in the 10U Intermediate 77 competed in a very large bracket and wrestled 8 matches throughout the day and placed 2nd. He received a bye in round one, won with a pin in the second, then lost by a major decision 14-2. He went on to win his next match with a 5-0 decision, the fourth match 11-6, and the fifth match 8-5. Douglas won his 7th match by a 12-0 major decision, and to clinch the 2nd place spot pinned his last opponent in the last 10 seconds of the third round.

Mason Massingale competed in a two-person 10U Intermediate 120+ bracket and took 2nd place. He lost his first match with a 6-0 decision and lost his second match by a fall in the second round.

Paxton Irwin competed in the 12U Novice 74 division and received a bye for the first round, lost by a fall in his second match and received a bye in the third round. Paxton won in an overtime sudden victory 4-2 score. He lost his fifth match by getting pinned.

Cash Wolfe in the 12U Novice 82 division had five matches and placed 2nd. He won his first match with a fall in the first round, won his second with a fall also in the first round, and won his third by a 12-6 decision. He got pinned in his fourth match and won by no contest for his fifth match and secured 2nd place.

Ty Nunez wrestled in the 12U Novice 92 after wrestling five matches. He lost by getting pinned in his first match, received a bye in the second round, won by pinning his third opponent, won by pinning his fourth opponent, and secured 2nd place by pinning his last opponent.

Mario Nunez placed 5th in the 12U Novice 135. He lost by getting pinned in all four of his matches.

Drew Nunez placed 4th in the 14U Schoolboy/girl 102 division. He got pinned in his first match, received a bye for the second round, won in overtime with a sudden victory score of 8-6, and then was pinned in the second round of his final match.

The WWKWL Novice State Championship tournament ranked the OIWC 15th of the 24 teams who entered the tournament by adding up the wins, losses and points gained by the athletes throughout the day of competition.

Charles Hill is a wrestler in high school who competed in 3 open tournaments this year. He wasn’t able to compete in the Novice tournaments as they only included ages 14 and under. He wrestled in the USA Junior 132 division and wrestled 4 exhibition matches with other wrestlers that were not in his division. He won two of his matches and lost two. It proved difficult to find tournaments that had other wrestlers in his division because most 16-year-old wrestlers compete on high school teams. The OIWC had five potential athletes in high school show interest in wrestling and attended a few practices but Charles was the only one that stuck it out and competed in tournaments.

As the Orcas Island Wrestling Club roll up their mats to store them away, they are anxiously anticipating rolling them out again in October to welcome returning wrestlers back and hopefully add new ones. The club made a strong comeback after being shut down for two years, with wrestlers competing in seven different tournaments. Future goals for the OIWC include increasing the opportunity for youth to learn the sport of wrestling and finding more competition for the older youths so they may continue through high school ages. For more information about the club, you can search Orcas Island Wrestling on Facebook, or send an email to orcaswrestling@gmail.com.