Philomath High School coach Troy Woosley doesn't mind opening wrestling season with a tough tournament.
In Saturday's Perry Burlison Wrestling Classic at Cascade High, the Warriors jumped right into the fire against some of the top talent in the state.
"I like starting that way because it kinda sets the tone and you know what to expect the rest of the year," Woosley said. "There was 6A all the way to 2A schools there so you get a wide variety of it."
Still, the number of athletes wearing Philomath's colors were limited at the varsity level. Just six local grapplers saw action with most going in junior varsity bouts.
"The main concern was getting all my new guys in JV matches and they all got at least three," Woosley said. "A few of them went 2-1 so that was really good to see."
Matt Hamlet (143-145), Cody Griffin (161-169), Austin Murphree (175-179), Kalvin Schunn (190-195) and Brooks Stearns (191-203) each won two of three matches in the JV tournament.
"It was a tough tournament on the varsity side," Woosley said. "There were 37 state placers in the varsity, seven different state champions were in there. It was tough."
Philomath senior Jared Minter placed fifth in the 220-pound weight division. Minter lived on the edge with his two victories on the mat coming on "sudden victories." Minter opened with a loss in his first-round match but rebounded for wins of 6-4 over South Salem's Sangato Letisi and 6-4 over Yamhill-Carlton's Zackary Rodriguez. Following a second loss, he dropped into the fifth-place match but didn't get to wrestle again with Stayton's Elliot Anundi forfeiting.
Another senior, Keltin Benson, won two of his four matches at 132. The victories were on a major decision over Marshfield's Colton West, 10-0, and a pin over Sisters' Rylan Carter in 2:26.
Senior Tony Rath (138) and freshman Connor Kohn (195) also had wins. Rath opened with a 7-5 decision over Evergreen's Rayn Preston. Kohn had a pin over Sweet Home's Levi Baird in 1:21.
Juniors Jayden Jensen (152) and Kane Rust (285) also competed in the varsity tournament.
"We saw a lot of schools in our league and we did really well when we met them," Woosley said. "We had a couple of good wins early. It was positive."
The Perry Burlison Classic also featured a girls tournament and Philomath's lone entrant fared pretty well. Seeing competitive action for the first time, junior newcomer Rio Jensen placed fifth with a 2-2 record. Three of her four matches were against Thurston wrestlers. The victories came over Silverton's Taylor Ward in 2:46 and Thurston's Asha Orlinski in 1:30 in the medal round.
Woosley said Philomath's other female wrestler, junior Jaime Chambers, suffered a lower leg injury and could be lost for the season.
Several wrestlers missed the tournament, including senior Joey Howell, who was taking college-entrance exams.
"The conditioning was better than I thought and the mental was really good," Woosley summed up. "It was a good start."
Philomath next competes Saturday at the Scio Tournament. The Warriors will wrestle on the home mat for the first time Dec. 13 in a dual against Crescent Valley.
Perry Burlison Classic
Saturday at Cascade HS
Team scoring: Crook County 183, Thurston 173.5, Dallas 168, Cascade 132, Sweet Home 123, North Marion 102.5, Marshfield 95, Crescent Valley 93, West Albany 90, Lebanon 83, Silverton 68.5, Banks 60, Yamhill-Carlton 56, North Salem 49.5, McKay 44, Cottage Grove 41, Sisters 40, Evergreen 38, Siuslaw 24, Junction City 22, Philomath 21, North Bend 11, Stayton 11, South Salem 10.5.
132 — Keltin Benson (2-2): Maj. dec. Colton West, Marshfield, 10-0; pinned by Russel Stigall, North Marion, 1:37; pinned Rylan Carter, Sisters, 2:26; pinned by Dawson Barcroft, Dallas, 2:48.
138 — Tony Rath (1-2): Dec. Rayn Preston, Evergreen, 7-5; pinned by Kane Nixon, Cascade, 2:46; lost maj. dec. Coltyn Ringen, North Bend, 16-6.
152 — Jayden Jensen (0-2): Pinned by Cole Pade, Sisters, 1:42; pinned by Clint Pfeifer, North Salem, 2:58.
195 — Connor Kohn (1-2): Pinned by Caulin Leach, West Albany, 2:44; pinned Levi Baird, Sweet Home, 1:21; pinned by Conner Ball, Evergreen, 2:30.
220 — Jared Minter (3-2, 5th): Pinned by Colton Hallett, Thurston, 1:54; dec. Sangato Letisi, South Salem, 6-4 (SV); dec. Zackary Rodriguez, Yamhill-Carlton, 9-7 (SV); pinned by Jonathan Hernandez, McKay, 2:45; forfeit over Elliot Anundi, Stayton.
285 — Kane Rust (0-2): Pinned by Anthony Alvarez, McKay, 3:55; pinned by Adam Lamb, Cottage Grove, 1:00.
Team scoring: Thurston 243, Sweet Home 77, Cottage Grove 37, McKay 30.5, South Salem 29, Gervais 26, Dallas 23.5, Silverton 19, Banks 14, Philomath 10, Crescent Valley 7, North Bend 3, North Salem 0.
145 — Rio Jensen (2-2, 5th): Pinned by Sidalie Jaramillo, Thurston, 0:48; pinned Taylor Ward, Silverton, 2:46; pinned by Alaina Zamudio, Thurston, 2:09; pinned Asha Orlinski, Thurston, 1:30.
136-139 — Morgan French (1-2, 6th): Pinned by James Jennings, McKay, 1:35; pinned Oscar Mendez, Cascade, 4:31; lost dec. Austin Pade, Sisters, 6-0.
142-143 — Cooper Latz (0-3, 8th): Pinned by Seth Jackson, West Albany, 0:57; pinned by Chadrick Gideon, McKay, 1:27; pinned by Tyler Lumpkin, Evergreen, 0:57.
143-145 — Matt Hamlet (2-1, 2nd): Pinned Jonathan Elmer, North Bend, 1:52; dec. Dylan Wilson, Evergreen, 5-4; pinned by Joshua Hinds, Marshfield, 2:35.
161-169 — Cody Griffin (2-1, 5th): Pinned by Rephael Mauck, Banks, 1:53; maj. dec. Fabian Santos, Gervais, 19-7; pinned Logan Raborn, Sweet Home, 1:25.
175-179 — Austin Murphree (2-1, 5th): Pinned by Iakona Howerton, Sweet Home, 1:44; pinned Santos Cruz, McKay, 2:32; pinned Jaden Pearce, Stayton, 0:04.
185-192 — Randall Tipsword (1-2, 6th): Pinned by Zachary Holliday, Junction City, 2:44; pinned Jesse Martinez, Marshfield, 1:02; pinned by Kenny Storms, Sweet Home, 4:04.
190-195 — Kalvin Schunn (2-1, 2nd): Pinned Forrest Myres, West Albany, 3:31; pinned Christian Newlan, Siuslaw, 1:21; pinned by Morgan Smith, Stayton, 1:02.
191-203 — Brooks Stearns (2-1, 3rd): Pinned Kayden Lindquist, Cascade, 0:30; lost dec. Janderi Perez-Alejandre, McKay, 12-5; pinned Garrett Olbrich, Crescent Valley, 0:20.
226-286 — Noah Estes (0-2, 4th): Pinned by Obbelis Garcia, North Salem, 1:05; pinned by Cole Herber, Junction City, 1:26.