Eastlake wins on mat, loses on points

February 5, 2014

By Neil Pierson

The scoreboard showed Redmond defeated Eastlake 45-30 in the teams’ KingCo Conference wrestling finale, but the Wolves didn’t feel like they’d come out on the short end.

Redmond took advantage of four forfeits to score 24 team points in a Jan. 30 dual at Eastlake High School. That proved to be the difference as the Wolves scored a 24-21 edge in the nine bouts that were actually contested.

“That’s a little upsetting, but there’s not much you can do about (the forfeits),” Eastlake senior Ryan Wasserman said. “And I’m proud of everyone all the same.”

Wasserman, a 170-pounder, turned in a gritty performance to defeat Redmond’s Bryan LaPierre 5-0 in the night’s final match.

Wasserman gained an early point when LaPierre was called for an illegal hold, and a takedown gave him a 3-0 lead after one period. The margin grew to 5-0 after Wasserman got a reversal from a bottom-position restart in the second period.

Wasserman played it defensively in the third period. He was given a stall warning with 21 seconds left, but managed to keep LaPierre in check and hold on.

“I knew he was a lot stronger than me,” Wasserman said. “I knew he was a pretty bulky guy, and I knew that he was going to be really strong with the throws.

“I knew I had to keep my weight back and just wait for my opportunity. So I was just watching and waiting for weaknesses that he was providing for me, which was really difficult because, like I said, he’s a strong guy, bigger upper body, so it was hard to find those gaps.”

The dual started at 182 pounds, where Eastlake’s Jacob Kaufman and Redmond’s Collin Cottom waged a back-and-forth battle. The wrestlers exchanged four reversals in the first period, and Kaufman emerged with an 8-4 lead, but after a takedown early in the second period, Cottom finished the pin at 2 minutes, 53 seconds.

The Wolves won the next two bouts, though, as 195-pounder Jonnie Estrada bolted to a 10-0 lead and pinned Nicky Kaneko at 2:46. Rudy Ross (220) followed with a pin of Jose Conde at 1:43.

But the Mustangs came back to lead 24-18 by collecting forfeit wins at 285, 113 and 120 pounds. Eastlake’s Martin Miller (106) also won by forfeit.

Redmond solidified its grasp with two dominating results at 126 and 132.

At 126, Eastlake’s Konrad Peterson managed to get out of three near-fall situations, but he lost a 15-1 major decision to Chase Simmons. At 132, Eastlake’s Jacob Mayo wound up in a similar situation, and lost an 18-1 technical fall to Ryan Collyer.

Eastlake’s William Galarpe (138) put his strength on display, overpowering Audel Bartolo. Galarpe collected three near falls in the second period, finishing the last one for a pin at 3:54.

The closest match of the night was at 145, where Eastlake’s John Monahan eked out a 2-1 decision over Nathan Kaneko.

Kaneko escaped from the second-period restart for a 1-0 lead, but Monahan got a two-point reversal from the third-period restart, then fended off a late challenge by flipping Kaneko over his shoulders.

The Mustangs got a forfeit victory from Riley Cagle (152), and Alex Kudryashov (160) pinned Eastlake’s Miles Williams at 5:32, piling up a 22-8 lead along the way.

The Wolves get eight days of rest before the postseason starts Feb. 7-8 with the KingCo championships at Bothell High School.

Eastlake didn’t have a great dual-meet season, Wasserman noted, but that doesn’t mean much in postseason tournaments.

The Wolves think they have as many as five legitimate threats to reach state, including Wasserman and Estrada, who barely fell short at regionals last season. No one on Eastlake’s roster has prior state experience.

“I know that we’re really strong individually,” Wasserman said. “It’s mostly the forfeits that are hindering us, so I’m really excited to see what we can do individually.”

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