DEMING - The Mount Baker girls' wrestling team might not have left the Deming Dome on Wednesday, Jan. 8, feeling overconfident about its dual win. But against a perennial power such as Sedro-Woolley, a win isn't much to complain about.
Combined, the Mountaineers and Cubs won each wrestling state title from 2008 to 2012 before Warden took home the top prize last year. Baker won in 2008 and Sedro-Woolley held its title from 2009-2012.
Four days removed from putting together a dominating win during the 2014 Sedro-Woolley Women's Wrestling Tournament, it was the Mountaineers' turn to welcome in their Skagit County rival, and Baker did just enough to score a 33-31 win thanks to four Sedro-Woolley forfeits.
The Mountaineers, who placed second at state, beat Sedro-Woolley 63-6 and earned nine pins during the head-to-head dual meet last year. Nicole Boardman's first-period pin and Aniecea Camacho's wild last-second win represented Mount Baker's only wins this time, while the Cubs won five matches.
"We wrestled all right," Mount Baker coach Clyde Blockley said. "Sedro-Woolley came up here and wrestled very well, very well. We still have a lot to work on. We aren't there yet."
Blockley said he used a new lineup, giving an opportunity to some of the Mountaineers' up-and-comers. In turn, many of Baker's top wrestlers were given the night off or forfeits. Returning state placers Natalie Smith (118 pounds), Jessica Mata (130) and Akemi Schwinden (235) each didn't wrestle.
Boardman's 124-pound match was Mount Baker's most dominating. She needed only 27 seconds to pin Sedro-Woolley's Maddie Moser, giving the Mountaineers points in the opening-match.
Although Camacho's match took place midway through the dual, her result turned out to be the difference. And what a match it was.
Camacho faced Sedro-Woolley's Rebeka Matthews following two hard-fought Baker losses that went the full three periods, and Camacho found herself locked in another tight battle.
The Mount Baker sophomore led 4-2 heading into the second period thanks to a takedown and reversal, but Matthews rebounded with a takedown and a three-point near fall to end the second period.
Camacho closed the gap early in the third and eventually took a 9-8 lead with a takedown with only 42 seconds left. However, as she desperately gripped Matthews' waist, the Cubs wrestler scored an escape to tie the match with five seconds left.
"It went right through my head, 'I can't let my team down. I got to fight and I can do this,'" Camacho said. "I was real tired when I was on top. Then she got up, and I knew I had to get that point."
Camacho, without hesitation, grabbed Matthews, spun her to the mat and got enough top position to be rewarded a two-point takedown and the win as the final buzzer sounded.
"I guess she pretty much gutted it out," Blockley said of his 155-pounder. "She had to get a takedown at the end, and she knew she couldn't let the girl up, too. She made herself work a little harder for the takedown there."
Despite all the state title clout in Deming Tuesday, Blockley and Camacho said they viewed the match as just another dual.
"Our ultimate goal in everything is to do our best and pin them," Camacho said. "We just know that it might be tougher against this team, so we have to go harder."
Mount Baker travels to Kelso next at 10 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 11, to compete in the Kelso Ladies Invitational.
Reach Andrew Lang at email@example.com or call 360-756-2862. Follow @bhamsports on Twitter for Whatcom County sports updates.
MOUNT BAKER 33, SEDRO-WOOLLEY 31
100: Leah Olson (Sedro-Woolley) forfeit. 106: Teracita Shanes (Sedro-Woolley) pin Lacey Postlewait (Mount Baker) 3:10. 112: Tori Barnes (Sedro-Woolley) pin Heidi Maresh 3:59. 118: Natalie Smith (Mount Baker) forfeit. 124: Nicole Boardman (Mount Baker) pin Maddie Moser (Sedro-Woolley) 0:27. 130: Heidi Chambers (Mount Baker) forfeit. 137: Chloe Ammons (Sedro-Woolley) dec. Sylvia Lynch (Mount Baker) 11-9. 145: Taylor Dawson (Sedro-Woolley) dec. Rachel Nichols (Mount Baker) 11-2. 155: Aniecea Camacho (Mount Baker) dec. Rebeka Matthews (Sedro-Woolley) 11-9. 170: Dajah Mendiola (Sedro-Woolley) pin Jordan Horsmon (Mount Baker) 0:48. 190: Onalee Barrett (Mount Baker) forfeit. 235: Akemi Schwinden (Mount Baker) forfeit.
Reach ANDREW LANG at firstname.lastname@example.org or call ext. 862.