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1/16/2013 5:18:00 PM Email this articlePrint this article 
Submitted by Aaron Bessonette
Jacob James stands on the podium as the Hoquiam Invitational Champion for the 145 pound weight class. Jamesí medal was given to him by Rulon Gardner, a previous heavyweight world champion.
Cashmere wrestlers finish fifth in Hoquiam tournament
Kacie Thrift
Staff Writer

The Cashmere wrestling team took fifth place in a 12-team tournament after losing a home dual against the Chelan Goats a few days before.

Over the weekend, The Bulldogs traveled to Hoquiam, Wash. to compete in a 12-team tournament. Cashmere Head Coach Aaron Bessonette said the tournament mainly consisted of other 1A teams from the southwest area.

"It's good for our kids to see other wrestlers from around the state prior to the start of the post season," Bessonette said. "Overall, it was a good experience for our kids."

The Bulldogs took fifth place and came home with one tournament champion. Junior Jacob James took first place at 145 pounds. Three other Bulldog wrestlers were able to make the finals next to teammates James. Austin Steele at 106 pounds, Brock Steele at 152 pounds, and Tyler Carrillo at 220 pounds wrestled well but fell short of taking home silver medals.

"We are a much better tournament team than we are a dual team," Bessonette said. "We have a handful of tough kids that always manage to get the team points in a tournament setting, but not having a full line-up really makes it difficult to win in a head to head team dual."

According to Bessonette, there was a special guest who made an appearance at this tournament. Rulon Gardner is a past world heavyweight champion. He won the gold medal in the 2000 Olympics and the bronze medal in the 2004 Olympics. Gardner handed out medals to the wrestlers in the closing ceremony. Bessonette said it was really special for the young wrestlers to meet an Olympic wrestler.

Earlier last week, the Bulldogs hosted a dual against the Chelan Goats. Once again, the Bulldogs were forced to lose points before the matches started because they don't have enough wrestlers to make a full team. Chelan beat Cashmere with a score of 66-15.

"Chelan is one of the top rated 1A teams in the state and for good reason," Bessonette said of the Bulldog's opponent.

After Cashmere gave up five forfeits and wrestled a total of nine matches, the Bulldogs came away with two victories. Steele, at 152 pounds, won his dual by beating Truini by the score of 7-1. Tanner Spikes won his dual by pinning Ruiz in the first round in the 160 pound weight class.

On Thursday, the Bulldogs head to Tonasket for a dual against the home Tigers.

Kacie Thrift may be reached at 782-3781 or reporter@cashmerevalleyrecord.com.



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