Bellingham’s boys’ wrestling team came out on top of a competitive 42-39 match against city-rival Sehome, with eight matches throughout the night ending in a pin.
The match was also senior night for the Red Raiders, who have five seniors on the team. The seniors were able to win-by-pin in four of the five matches against the Mariners.
“I think both teams looked really good tonight,” Bellingham coach Tom Hinz said in a phone interview.
Riley Takamura (126) pinned Aidan VanBrink in the third round at 5:05, Sergio Torres (132) pinned Chandler Heint in the first round at 1:15, Alden Roberts (160) pinned Scott Kruzich in the first round at 0:36 and Blair Bennett (170) pinned Davis Canfield-Cole in the third round at 3:33.
“Our seniors looked good and solid,” Hinz said. “Blair looked really dominant against his guy.”
The fifth senior, Spencer Marshall-Rodenberg (182) lost his match by pin at the 5:05 mark.
With senior night over and the postseason in sight, expectations for the five seniors are set high.
“Spencer’s goal is to get to state and Riley is ranked fourth in state,” Hinz said. “Riley, Sergio, Blair and Spencer could all be state placers this year. They are all ranked really high in state and there are huge expectations for all of them. I wouldn’t be surprised if any of them ended up in the state finals.”
One match that stood out to Hinz was Romeo Mendez’s (138) match against Kyle Clemenson from Sehome. Mendez lost the match by a 7-2 decision. But if he would’ve been pinned, the two teams would’ve tied, Hinz said.
“It was a close match that could have gone either way,” he said.
Bellingham will wrestle Sehome and Squalicum next at 6 p.m. Friday, Jan. 23, in the Battle of the Boot at Bellingham High School.
“It’s a fun thing. They are obviously our two biggest rivals and it’s an opportunity to wrestle against them both,” Hinz said.
Bellingham 42, Sehome 39
106: Dewald Oliver (Bellingham) forfeit; 113: Logan Franey (Sehome) pin. Indy Casas 1:33; 120: Suan Tung (Sehome) pin. Vaughn McNamara 1:13; 126: Riley Takemura (Bellingham) pin. Aidan VanBrink 5:05; 132: Sergio Torres (Bellingham) pin. Chandler Heint 1:15; 138: Kyle Clemenson (Sehome) def. Romeo Mendez 7-2; 145: Chris Thompson (Bellingham) pin. Micah Johnson 1:13; 152: Brahm VanWoerden (Bellingham) forfeit; 160: Alden Roberts (Bellingham) pin. Scott Kruzich 0:36; 170: Blair Bennett (Bellingham) pin. Davis Canfield-Cole 3:33; 182: Jace Rinker (Sehome) pin. Spencer Marshall-Rodenberg 5:05; 195: Zach Zimmerman (Sehome) forfeit; 220: Nick Coats (Sehome) forfeit; 285: Briley Funk (Sehome) forfeit.