Shorewood’s Finley Houck holds down Kamiak’s Rebecca Serati during the 3A/4A Girls Region 1 Wrestling Tournament on Saturday, Feb. 11, 2023, at Snohomish High School in Snohomish, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Shorewood’s Finley Houck holds down Kamiak’s Rebecca Serati during the 3A/4A Girls Region 1 Wrestling Tournament on Saturday, Feb. 11, 2023, at Snohomish High School in Snohomish, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Trio of champions lift Shorewood girls to regional team title

Also, 3 Marysville wrestlers win championships, Arlington sends 4 to finals, and other local winners.

SNOHOMISH — The Shorewood High School girls wrestling team doesn’t have a big roster.

The program doesn’t even have an official head coach.

But after a banner day on Saturday, the Stormrays have a regional team title.

Shorewood sent four wrestlers to the finals, claimed three individual championships and qualified a program-record seven athletes for Mat Classic XXXIV on its way winning the 3A/4A Girls Region 1 Wrestling Tournament team title at Snohomish High School.

“We expect a lot out of them and we push them hard,” Shorewood coach Clark Norton said. “Today they wrestled above our expectations. It was really humbling to watch them and see them do things that we just practiced yesterday for the first time. … They were so disciplined today. It was really, really impressive.”

The Stormrays finished with 169 points and distanced themselves from second-place Mount Vernon (136) and third-place Arlington (133) in the final round of matches with their three individual championships.

Libby Norton kicked off the run of titles with an impressive showing at 100 pounds. Norton scored pins in her first two matches and took control early in her championship bout with Arlington freshman Araxi Crew. The Shorewood sophomore built a 7-1 advantage before powering her way to a second-period pin.

“She really just attacked in all of her matches,” Norton said. “She stayed discipline and really stuck with the game plan and just kept going after her opponents over and over. … She just overpowered them with her relentless going for it.”

It was a bit of redemption for Norton after falling in her sub-regional title match last week.

“It means a lot,” she said. “… I was looking forward to this. I wanted to come back and end with a bang.”

The victory also helped Shorewood stave of a push from Arlington, which entered the final round of matches in second place and within striking distance of the Stormrays.

Finley Houck helped Shorewood further separate itself soon after. After earning a hard-fought 3-2 decision in her semifinals match against Lake Stevens freshman Kamryn Mason, who had beaten Houck earlier this season, the Stormrays’ freshman outlasted Kamiak junior Rebecca Serati, who finished eighth in her weight class at Mat Classic last season, with a 7-2 decision in the 105-pound title match.

Houck said she started wrestling at 5 years old and that her early years on the mat featured many losses while wrestling boys. Those humbling experiences early on proved fruitful, she said.

“It’s nice to see those skills finally paying off my freshman year,” Houck said. “It’s just amazing to see.”

Senior Kiana Yoshimura completed the Stormrays’ parade to the top of the podium in an all-Shorewood final at 170 pounds. After earning pins in her first two bouts, Yoshimura executed a fireman’s carry and then quickly pinned freshman teammate Abbi Chishungu 23 seconds into the title match.

“It was really fun. I’m glad I got to go against one of my teammates,” Yoshimura said. “… I wouldn’t want to be anybody else.”

Shorewood’s Kiana Yoshimura celebrates a win over teammate Abbi Chishungu during the 3A/4A Girls Region 1 Wrestling Tournament on Saturday, Feb. 11, 2023, at Snohomish High School in Snohomish, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Shorewood’s Kiana Yoshimura celebrates a win over teammate Abbi Chishungu during the 3A/4A Girls Region 1 Wrestling Tournament on Saturday, Feb. 11, 2023, at Snohomish High School in Snohomish, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Norton also highlighted the efforts of Chishungu in her surprise run to the finals. The freshman pulled of a big upset victory in the semifinals against Everett senior Marciela Mendoza-Garcia, who had beaten Yoshimura for a sub-regional title last week.

“That was a huge upset for her, especially as a freshman,” Norton said. “She’s never done anything like that. She knocked off someone she wasn’t supposed to beat.”

“Having them go out there together just felt really great,” added Norton, who noted that Yoshimura and Chishungu are wrestling partners in practice. “… They were there because an older wrestler took a younger wrestler under their wing.”

All 10 Shorewood wrestlers competed at regionals and won at least one match.

“It was a whole team effort,” Norton said. “They’re almost freaky supportive of each other. It’s been a real eye-opener working with the girls more the last couple years. They are so tight-knit and positive with each other. It’s really been nice.”

Marysville wrestlers claim 3 individual titles

Marysville Getchell’s Kira Songer and Marysville Pilchuck’s Juju Kilroy and Alivia White never left much in doubt on their way to earning individual titles.

Songer, a sophomore, made her trip to the finals after a first-round pin in her opening match and a win by forfeit in the semifinals. She then met a familiar foe in Arlington sophomore Danielle Crew in the 115-pound championship match and ran away with an 11-0 major decision.

Marysville Getchell’s Kira Songer tries to pin Arlington’s Danielle Crew during the 3A/4A Girls Region 1 Wrestling Tournament on Saturday, Feb. 11, 2023, at Snohomish High School in Snohomish, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Marysville Getchell’s Kira Songer tries to pin Arlington’s Danielle Crew during the 3A/4A Girls Region 1 Wrestling Tournament on Saturday, Feb. 11, 2023, at Snohomish High School in Snohomish, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Songer said Danielle Crew’s noticeable height advantage presents a difficult challenge and that she relied on the experience gained in the pairs’ previous matches this season.

“I just felt really proud,” Songer said of winning the title.

Kilroy, a senior, cruised to two first-period pins to reach the 135-pound championship bout and received a victory by forfeit in the finals.

White, a senior and two-time defending state champion at 190 pounds, needed a total of just 53 seconds to rack up three pins and a third career regional title.

Other local title winners

Stanwood senior Laela Ridgeway delivered the Spartans’ lone individual champion with a buzzer-beating pin in the first period of her 110-pound title bout.

Ridgeway fell behind Mount Vernon freshman Braelyn Manke after an early take down but gained control after and worked her way to the pin just as the period ended.

The moment had some extra meaning for the Stanwood senior after she was forced to bow out of last season’s regional tournament due to an injury.

“It’s exciting,” Ridgeway said. “I have a lot of emotions.”

Stanwood’s Laela Ridgeway records a victory by pinning Mount Vernon’s Braelyn Manke during the 3A/4A Girls Region 1 Wrestling Tournament on Saturday, Feb. 11, 2023, at Snohomish High School in Snohomish, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Stanwood’s Laela Ridgeway records a victory by pinning Mount Vernon’s Braelyn Manke during the 3A/4A Girls Region 1 Wrestling Tournament on Saturday, Feb. 11, 2023, at Snohomish High School in Snohomish, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Lake Stevens senior Madisen Bowers avenged a disappointing regional showing a season ago with a run to a championship at 130 pounds.

Bowers said she entered regionals last season with the expectation of bringing home a title and securing a state berth. Neither of those came to fruition as Bowers suffered an early exit a regionals, but it was different story this time around.

The senior picked up wins by major decision and pin to set up a title match with senior teammate Olivia Aylesworth.

Bowers lifted Aylesworth and appeared to be ready to deliver a big slam but gently set her teammate on the mat before earning the pin 14 seconds into the match.

The longtime practice partners had an agreement prior to the tournament about who would win if they met in the finals based of their matches in practice, Bowers said.

“I was a little nervous coming back this year,” Bowers said. “… It’s just really cool to be able to move past that and show everyone what I can actually do.”

Lake Stevens’ Madisen Bowers calmly pins teammate Olivia Aylesworth to claim first place as the two laugh about it during the 3A/4A Girls Region 1 Wrestling Tournament on Saturday, Feb. 11, 2023, at Snohomish High School in Snohomish, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Lake Stevens’ Madisen Bowers calmly pins teammate Olivia Aylesworth to claim first place as the two laugh about it during the 3A/4A Girls Region 1 Wrestling Tournament on Saturday, Feb. 11, 2023, at Snohomish High School in Snohomish, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Glacier Peak junior Karianne Baldwin claimed her second consecutive regional title with a win at 125 pounds.

Baldwin, the defending 125-pound state champion, earned a technical fall and major decision before pinning senior teammate Parker Lastala in the third period of their title bout.

Everett freshman Mia Cienega bulldozed her way to a title at in the 235-pound weight class.

Cienega piled up three consecutive first-period pins, including a victory at the 1:41 mark of her championship match against Arlington senior Janay Beckman.

Everett’s Mia Cienega shakes hands with Arlington’s Janay Beckman before claiming a victory by pin during the 3A/4A Girls Region 1 Wrestling Tournament on Saturday, Feb. 11, 2023, at Snohomish High School in Snohomish, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Everett’s Mia Cienega shakes hands with Arlington’s Janay Beckman before claiming a victory by pin during the 3A/4A Girls Region 1 Wrestling Tournament on Saturday, Feb. 11, 2023, at Snohomish High School in Snohomish, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Arlington girls send 4 to finals, finish 3rd

Arlington was in contention for a team title throughout the night with a quartet of athletes reaching the finals in their respective weight classes, but the Eagles were 0 for 4 in championship matches and couldn’t close the gap between themselves in Shorewood in the final round of matches.

Araxi Crew, Danielle Crew, Raina Allen and Beckman each reached finals matches for Arlington.

The Eagles tied Shorewood with a meet-high seven wrestlers advancing to Mat Classic.

Shorewood’s Libby Norton and Arlington’s Araxi Crew grapple with each other during the 3A/4A Girls Region 1 Wrestling Tournament on Saturday, Feb. 11, 2023, at Snohomish High School in Snohomish, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Shorewood’s Libby Norton and Arlington’s Araxi Crew grapple with each other during the 3A/4A Girls Region 1 Wrestling Tournament on Saturday, Feb. 11, 2023, at Snohomish High School in Snohomish, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Other locals in finals

Stanwood sophomore Signe Cairus suffered a first-period pin against Ferndale’s Malia Welch in the 120-pound final.

Jackson sophomore Rylee Northall forfeited to Kilroy in the 135-pound title bout.

Snohomish freshman Jillian Hradec fell to Bellingham School District’s Fracnes Porteous via first-period pin in the 155-pound final.

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