LAKE STEVENS — In Oregon, Roseburg is the defending 6A state champion wrestling team. But in Washington, they’re just another opponent leaving the Lake Stevens gymnasium in defeat.
Albeit, their bout with the Vikings was closer than most.
At the end of the last match the score was tied 33-33, and Lake Stevens was awarded the victory on tiebreaker criteria, earning the win with the most six-point decisions. With the triumph the defending Washington 4A state champions avenged a loss to the Indians in Roseburg last year and kept alive its 17-year home winning streak.
“It was great,” Barnes said. “Just a great night for our fans to be able to come in and see a great match with a good team. A really good team.”
Barnes reached out to Roseburg last year, to start what he calls the “Oregon-Washington Challenge.” The Vikings drove 71/2 hours in 2010 and led early — much like Roseburg did Wednesday night — but ultimately fell to the Indians. This year Roseburg returned the favor. According to Google Maps it is 387 miles from Roseburg High School to the Lake Stevens High School campus.
“Oh sure,” Barnes said of his team wanting a little revenge for last year’s result. “You know it’s a friendly rivalry, with one of the best teams in Oregon.”
The turning point this time around may have been a forfeit. With no one to wrestle at 113-pounds, Roseburg gave Lake Stevens an early Christmas present in the form of six points. That ushered in a string of five straight wins for the Vikings, which saw them go from a 25-9 deficit to a 33-25 lead.
A pin by Jesse Peterson at 126-pounds brought Lake Stevens to within one point. In the next bout (132), Eric Solar got two two-point near falls in the last minute of the third round to go from down 3-0 to up 4-3, and just like that the Vikings had their first lead of the night, 30-25.
Finally, senior Mick Majors narrowly defeated his opponent at 138-pounds (4-3) to help pad Lake Stevens’ lead. It turns out the Vikings would need all the points they could get.
“(Majors) really came through for us tonight,” Barnes said. “A match this close, when it comes down to a tie, all the little points count.”
Barnes said that Peterson, Solar and Dakota Reynolds (120-pounds) were all wrestling up a division from their usual weight. He praised the effort of the three wrestlers, who all emerged victorious.
“To be able to bump up (a weight class) against this caliber of team,” Barnes said, “is great.”
With the Vikings up 33-29 going into the last match there was still hope for Roseburg, which would have won with a pin or tied with a major decision. Roseburg’s Hector Mandera earned the latter, beating Austin Gershmel 15-6 and tying the score.
The Indians led 10-0 early, but a 9-8 decision in favor of Lake Stevens wrestler Ryan Olliges at 182 pounds and an impressive pin by Shaquille Reed at 220 pounds kept the score close. In his bout, Reed found himself in trouble, but was able to slip out from underneath his opponent and come out right on top of him, igniting huge cheers from the home crowd.
“Enormous,” Barnes said of Reed’s bout. “That kid (Ben Goirigolzarri) beat us up last year. That was a huge win for us.”
After Roseburg took the next couple of bouts, the Vikings were awarded the forfeit and the momentum began to swing in the Vikings’ favor.
“That forfeit was huge,” Barnes said.
A side plot in the match was the 17-year home winning streak the Vikings had on the line. However, Barnes wasn’t too worried about that.
“It’s not that big of deal,” he said. “That’s not what it’s all about.”
It turns out competition is what it’s really all about.
“Out of league, out of state. It’s just really good for the competition,” said Barnes. “I think it’s just really cool for the kids to be able to hook up with a team that has a lot of pride, like ours.”
Before the Vikings-Indians met, the No. 1 2A teams from Oregon (Culver) and Washington (Orting) wrestled, with Culver coming out on top 39-34. The Vikings then took a few moments to induct alum Burke Barnes, the son of Lake Stevens coach Brent Barnes and the 2002 Herald Man of Year, into the Vikings Hall of Fame before the first bout of the main event began.
At Lake Stevens H.S.
160–Javier Mandera (R) dec. Cody Vigoren, 13-5; 170–Tyler Otis (R) pinned Mason Beaver, 1:00; 182–Ryan Olliges (LS) dec. Selmar Hutchins III, 9-8; 195–Andrew Wheaton (R) pinned Ryan Simoneaux, :49; 220–Shaquille Reed (LS) pinned Ben Goirigolzarri, 3:27; 285–Marq Randall (R) dec. Brandon Johnson, 3-1; 106–Chad Jones (R) pinned Alex Rodorigo, 5:37; 113–Zack Cunningham (LS) won by forfeit; 120–Dakota Reynolds (LS) dec. Cole Van Anrooy, 5-2; 126–Jesse Peterson (LS) pinned Levi Holden, 3:14; 132–Eric Solar (LS) pinned Cameron Mesa, 3:02; 138–Mick Majors (LS) dec. Brody Faas, 4-3; 145–Reed Van Anrooy (R) dec. Kinsey Johnson, 13-4; 152–Hector Mandera (R) maj. dec. Austin Gershmel, 15-6. Record—Lake Stevens 5-1.