Washougal wrestlers continue winning tradition

Boys and girls clinch sub-region titles in Woodland

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The Washougal boys and girls wrestling squads completed a triple crown Saturday, in Woodland.

Since 2015, the Panthers have won three league and three sub-regional titles in a row.

“It’s our tradition,” said senior Dylen Cherry. “We’re not a tradition of, ‘Well, we tried our best.’ We do whatever it takes to win.”

The Panther girls racked up 276.5 points to beat 19 schools at the sub-regional tournament. Kelso was 140.5 points behind in second place.

“It’s not just a team, but also a family,” said junior Jaden Robb. “You remind each other to go running and eat healthy. It helps you succeed as a team, not just individually.”

Abby Lees, Morgan Ratcliff, Brooklyn Wurm-Wertz and Robb brought home championship medals.

Mialisa Oster, Hannah Swigert, Samantha Eakins and Emily Eakins earned second place.

Jenna Beaver, Laura Rasmussen and Aleksi Donahue took third place. Mikah Bartel finished in fourth place. Ariana Clemente and Sariah Clark claimed fifth place.

The Washougal boys earned 314.5 points to defeat six schools. Mark Morris trailed in second place by 133.5 points.

Dylan Kiemele, Cherry, Tanner Lees, John Gable and Michael Hickey clinched championship medals.

Cole Pass and Nick Wolfe secured second place. Jason Powell, Andrew Hopple and Dakota Andleman took third place. Aaron Douglas and Hayden Golphenee finished in fourth place.

Cherry and Kiemele talked about how wrestling for Washougal has made them stronger.

“It’s really changed me as a person,” Kiemele said. “How I view things, and what I do.”

“Every time I walk into this room, it’s a challenge,” Cherry said. “Every once in a while, you’re like, ‘I don’t know if I want to do it? I don’t know if I can?’

“You just keep going. That’s what wrestling teaches you. Just dedication and determination.”

Washougal sends 12 girls and boys to regional tournaments Saturday, Feb. 11, for an opportunity to compete at state.

The boys are at Ridgefield High School and the girls are in Aberdeen.

The top three girls and the top four boys in each weight class advance to the Matt Classic Feb. 17 and 18, at the Tacoma Dome.

“Keep training hard and always believe in yourself,” Robb said. “Wrestling is more mental than anything. If you know you’re mentally capable, you can do it.”