The Philomath High School wrestling team placed eighth, two individuals went through two days of bouts undefeated and a third Warrior pulled off an exciting victory over one of the top competitors in the state at the Oregon Classic in Redmond.
“We just really wrestled great Friday,” PHS coach Troy Woosley said about the duals tournament. “It wasn’t because of the competition either; they just wrestled with a bunch of passion and came in with energy.”
But on Saturday, the team hit a wall, so to speak, with three dual losses.
“We saw the lights, the stage and we froze,” Woosley said. “Most of our wrestlers were the same way, it was a group effort.”
Philomath has a young roster that includes nine freshmen and sophomores in the lineup.
Added Woosley, “We wrestled several state champion on Saturday and we were just overmatched.”
Junior Connar Kohn and sophomore Blake Niemann didn’t lose a bout all weekend — not an easy task considering the competition — but perhaps the biggest moment for the Warriors came in the Friday dual against Tillamook.
Junior Issiah Blackburn, ranked No. 6 at 182, went up against Tillamook junior Miquel Niemi, ranked No. 2 at 170. Niemi came in with an intimidating record of 30-2 with no losses to 4A opponents all season. His only setbacks had come to an out-of-state opponent and against wrestling powerhouse Crescent Valley. At state last year, he placed third at 160 pounds.
But Blackburn battled Niemi to the finish in the 182-pound bout and took a 12-8 decision in perhaps the most impressive victory of his high school wrestling career. The win was his 21st of the season and he added to that total with a few more triumphs in his other matches.
Blackburn’s lone loss of the tournament came against Baker’s MaHonri Rushton on a first-period pin. Rushton came in ranked No. 2 statewide at 182 and placed third at state last season at 170.
Kohn wrestled down a weight division for most of the tournament and won all six of his bouts. Niemann saw action in both the 103- and 112-pound divisions and came out with victories over every challenger.
Philomath had an impressive first day at the tournament by winning two of its three duals. Placed in a pool with three other schools, the Warriors defeated Estacada, 54-29, and McLoughlin, 58-12, but lost to a tough opponent in Tillamook, 52-27.
The second-place finish in the pool advanced Philomath into Saturday’s championship bracket. The Warriors faced Baker in the quarterfinals but lost by a 57-24 count. Philomath dropped into the consolation semifinals and lost to Cascade. The tournament ended for Philomath with a loss to Ontario in the seventh-place trophy match.
Results from Philomath’s final two duals on Saturday were not immediately available via the sport’s online reporting site.
In girls wrestling, Philomath sophomore Reynece Ryan saw action in two bouts against the same opponent at the Nick Lutz Girls Invitational in Florence. Ryan, who wrestles at 190, pinned the same Gold Beach opponent first in 28 seconds and then in just 11 seconds.
Ryan improved to 10-1 on the season.
Philomath will host the Mid-Valley Classic at 10 a.m. Friday. The tournament moved to Philomath from South Albany after that school’s gymnasium was damaged in a mid-December fire.
Participating schools joining the Warriors and RedHawks will be Central, Churchill, Harrisburg, McNary, Southridge and West Linn. There will be both a boys and girls tournament.
On Saturday, Philomath’s girls are scheduled to compete in a tournament at Hood River Valley.
Friday-Saturday at Redmond
Pool Matches (Round Robin)
Philomath 54, Estacada 29
106 — Chase Ringwald, Philomath, won by forfeit
113 — Blake Niemann, Philomath, pinned Faith Grainger, 2:45
120 — Landin Vittetoe, Estacada, tech. fall Isaac Harris, 15-0
126 — Ben Hernandez, Philomath, pinned Rylan Rouske, 1:58
132 — Caleb Blackburn, Philomath, pinned Tucker Jackson, 3:13
138 — Caleb McDonald, Estacada, pinned Jacob Williams, 1:33
145 — Cody Hovda, Estacada, pinned David Griffith, 0:52
152 — Blaise Pindell, Philomath, pinned Mark Youngberg, 4:00
160 — Cooper Latz, Philomath, pinned Aron Meraz, 2:32
170 — James Durand, Estacada, won by forfeit
182 — Issiah Blackburn, Philomath, pinned Kaden Settle, 2:38
195 — Connar Kohn, Philomath, pinned Jackson Turner, 3:06
220 — Nico Winsor, Estacada, won by forfeit
285 — Joseph Choi, Philomath, pinned Mariano Martinez, 1:08
Tillamook 52, Philomath 27
106 — Blake Niemann, Philomath, pinned Joshua Perdew, 1:52
113 — Austin Simmons, Tillamook, pinned Chase Ringwald, 0:32
120 — Bradley Rieger, Tillamook, pinned Isaac Harris, 0:13
126 — Quintin Metcalfe, Tillamook, pinned Ben Hernandez, 0:17
132 — Parker McKibbin, Tillamook, pinned Caleb Blackburn, 3:55
138 — Keegan Hagerty, Tillamook, pinned Jacob Williams, 0:17
145 — David Griffith, Philomath, pinned Gilbert Whitlatch, 5:09
152 — Chad Werner, Tillamook, maj. dec. Blaise Pindell, 15-4
160 — Sam Connelly, Tillamook, pinned Cooper Latz, 0:20
170 — Alex Werner, Tillamook, won by forfeit
182 — Issiah Blackburn, Philomath, dec. Miquel Niemi, 12-8
195 — Connar Kohn, Philomath, pinned Tieson O’Hagen, 1:26
220 — Jackson Contreras, Tillamook, won by forfeit
285 — Joseph Choi, Philomath, won by forfeit
Philomath 58, McLoughlin 12
106 — Blake Niemann, Philomath, pinned Ethan Jones, 0:44
113 — Chase Ringwald, Philomath, won by forfeit
120 — Isaac Wood, McLoughlin, pinned Isaac Harris, 3:24
126 — Ben Hernandez, Philomath, pinned Brandon Wood, 0:24
132 — Caleb Blackburn, Philomath, maj. dec. Layne Ensey, 13-4
138 — Jacob Williams, Philomath, pinned Aysia Quigg, 0:32
145 — Jesse Jones, McLoughlin, pinned David Griffith, 1:06
152 — Blaise Pindell, Philomath, pinned Adrian Pineda, 1:23
160 — Cooper Latz, Philomath, pinned Ethan Barahona, 1:12
170 — Double forfeit
182 — Issiah Blackburn, Philomath, won by forfeit
195 — Double forfeit
220 — Connar Kohn, Philomath, pinned Tanner Wells, 0:46
285 —Joseph Choi, Philomath, pinned Andy Ceja, 3:36
Baker 57, Philomath 24
106 — Chase Ringwald, Philomath, won by forfeit
113 — Blake Niemann, Philomath, pinned Caleb Shaw, 3:14
120 — Gavin Stone, Baker, pinned Isaac Harris, 1:17
126 — Johnny Niehaus, Baker, pinned Ben Hernandez, 1:23
132 — Caleb Blackburn, Philomath, inj. def. Cody Eskew, 2:35
138 — Casey Vaughan, Baker, pinned Jacob Williams, 0:59
145 — Jake Eskew, Baker, pinned David Griffith, 3:38
152 — Ian Feldmeier, Baker, pinned Blaise Pindell, 1:40
160 — Gauge Bloomer, Baker, pinned Cooper Latz, 0:55
170 — Adrian Allen, Baker, won by forfeit
182 — MaHonri Rushton, Baker, pinned Issiah Blackburn, 1:17
195 — Connar Kohn, Philomath, won by forfeit
220 — Colt Cobb, Baker, won by forfeit
285 —Jaden Martin, Baker, dec. Joseph Choi, 13-7
Note: Cascade defeated Philomath in the consolation semifinals. Ontario defeated Philomath in the seventh-place match. Results were not available for those two matches.
Nick Lutz Invitational
Saturday at Florence
Team Scoring: Cottage Grove 58.5, Sutherlin 57, Creswell 56, Newport 42, Siuslaw 42, Churchill 30, South Eugene 23, Toledo 22, Douglas 22, North Bend 18, North Douglas 16, Gold Beach 9, Willamette 9, Waldport 8, Philomath 6, Amity 4.
190 — Reynece Ryan (2-0): Pinned Si Imis Fry, Gold Beach, 0:28; pinned Si Imis Fry, Gold Beach, 0:11.
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