It may have been Mason McDaniel’s first international competition, but he still managed to strike gold.
McDaniel, a 2016 graduate of Edmonds-Woodway High School, claimed the 74-kilogram (163 pounds) gold medal in freestyle wrestling at the Junior Pan American Games on June 11 in Lima, Peru.
“It was awesome,” McDaniel said of winning gold. “It’s something I’ve been dreaming of for a long time. It’s great having that achievement under my belt.
“It was crazy,” McDaniel added about competing in a foreign country. “The refs didn’t even speak English, which was a weird experience. Having the guy I’m wrestling being from a completely different part of the world was crazy. It was awesome, though.”
McDaniel, who redshirted as a freshman at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville this past school year, was a perfect 4-0 in the tournament, defeating opponents from Guatemala, Colombia, the Dominican Republic and Canada. Two of his victories came by pin, and he prevailed 10-0 in the gold-medal match.
“I think I wrestled better than I’ve ever wrestled before,” he said. “It was definitely my best tournament.
“My late defense was working really well,” McDaniel added. “I’d been working on that for a couple weeks going into the tournament and it really showed.”
McDaniel also competed in Greco-Roman portion of the tournament, where he posted a 1-1 record.
McDaniel qualified for the U.S. team for the Junior Pan Am Games by placing third at the U.S. Open Wrestling Championships, held April 26-29 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Van Scoy leads locals at Cadet Nationals
Stanwood’s Riley Van Scoy led the local contingent that competed for Washington at the 2017 Cadet National Duels wrestling tournament on June 14-17 in York, Pennsylvania. The tournament was for high school freshmen and sophomores.
Van Scoy, wrestling in the 138-pound class, placed fifth in Greco-Roman and sixth in freestyle.
Also on Washington’s team were Marysville Pilchuck’s Cayden White (152) and Lincoln Davis (285).
The trio helped Washington place sixth out if 39 teams in both Greco-Roman and freestyle.
White triples at wrestling regionals
Alivia White, a 12-year-old from Marysville, swept all three of her divisions at the West Kids & Cadet Regional Championships wrestling tournament last week in Pocatello, Idaho.
White, competing in the 137-pound class, finished first in folkstyle, freestyle and Greco-Roman.
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