Story by Oliver Lazenby and photos by Oliver Hamlin
Blaine wrestling head coach Colt Warren hoped 10 of his Borderites would qualify for the regional tournament and give them a fighting chance at winning a regional title.
That’s exactly how many qualified last weekend at the 2A sub-regionals at Burlington-Edison.
Though Blaine came in just behind Burlington-Edison in team scoring, no school had more champions at the sub-regional tournament than Blaine. Ten Borderites placed, seven made finals and six walked away as champions of their weight class.
“For how few guys we brought we did incredibly well,” Warren said. “I think our core guys are of the highest quality in the region.”
Blaine didn’t have wrestlers in any of the three lowest weight classes. The number of wrestlers a school brings to a tournament matters because only wrestlers who place in the top four score points for the team.
As the competition gets stiffer and it becomes harder to make the podium, numbers matter less. That could work in Blaine’s favor at regionals.
“Numbers matter, make no mistake about that, but quality matters more,” Warren said.
Warren is still hopeful the Borderites will have a shot at a regional title, but they’ll have to beat Burlington-Edison as well as Olympic High School from Bremerton, which Blaine has faced at three different tournaments this year. Fourteen wrestlers from Olympic High School qualified for regionals.
The six Borderites who won individual titles last weekend are: Caleb Bullard at 138 pounds, Aidan Button (152), Chase DuBois (160), Jacob Westfall (182), Porter Schmidt (195) and Saul Magallon (220).
Other Borderites to earn spots at regionals are Alex Hall, second at 126 pounds; George Cheatham, fourth at (132); Ethan Deming, third at (145), and Tristan Alanis, fourth at (285).
Schmidt, winning at 195 pounds and “looking the best he’s looked all year,” was a tournament highlight, Warren said, and so was Cheatham placing in a tournament for his first time. Aside from that, Warren said everyone who went to finals performed really well.
The 2A regional tournament starts at noon on Saturday, February 10 at North Mason High School in Belfair, Washington.