Tiger wrestlers tested at Royal tourney

ROYAL CITY – Young team or no, the Tonasket wrestlers continue to test themselves against some pretty tough competition.

The Tigers traveled to Royal City on Dec. 29 for the Royal Christmas Tournament, taking 11th out of 18 teams in a field filled state tournament tested teams. No fewer than 10 of the 18 finished in the top 10 of their respective state tourneys last year, including 2B champion Warden, 1A runner-up Riverside, and 2A sixth-place squad Othello.

Granger (8th in 1A last year and currently ranked No. 2 by the Washington Wrestling Report) dominated the field, running up 191.5 team points to Castle Rock’s 136 for the team title.

The Tigers finished with 78, edging CTL brethren Cashmere (12th, 70.5), Chelan (14th, 65.5) and Okanogan (17th, 24) but finishing behind Liberty Bell (89).

“It’s an extremely tough tournament,” said Tonasket coach Dave Mitchell. “Especially for our freshmen and first-year wrestlers.”

Three of the Tigers earned top-four finishes, led by Jared Stedtfeld, who took second place at 113 pounds. Stedtfeld pinned his first three opponents before losing 6-3 in the final to Granger’s Victor Almaguer.

Stedtfeld was one of six Tigers to lose to a tournament champion.

Two of the others – Ryker Marchand (126) and Austin Booker (160) – bounced back from quarterfinal losses to earn fourth place finishes. Collin Aitcheson (120), Dalton Wahl (138) and Austin Knowlton (145) also lost to tourney champions. Wahl finished 2-2 on the day, with Aitcheson and Knowlton going 1-2.

John Rawley (182) also went 2-2 to finish sixth, while Tim Frazier (106), Dyllan Walton (132), Caleb Lofthus (170), Frank Holfelz (195), Daniel Ortega (220) and Tanner Good (285) also competed.

The Tigers travel to the Warden Invitational on Saturday, Jan. 7.

Hornets stay home

OROVILLE – Oroville’s wrestling team was scheduled to travel to Spokane on Dec. 29 for a holiday invitational, but coach Chuck Ricevuto said the Hornets ended up staying home due poor attendance at practice.

The Hornets were scheduled to travel to Omak on Wednesday, Jan. 4, and head to the Almira/Coulee-Hartline tournament on Saturday, Jan. 7.

About Brent Baker

Brent, is a former reporter/photographer for the Gazette-Tribune and sometimes works as a freelance sports reporter for the G-T. Prior to working at the G-T, he was the sports editor for Sunrise Publishing from 2000-2005 in Michigan. He subsequently owned and operated Buckland Media, a high school sports website, in Michigan until 2010. He and his wife Kim, who have an adult son, moved to Tonasket in 2010. Brent worked as a full time reporter/photographer at the G-T from 2011 - 2014).

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