Huskies win district mat title; send 13 to state tourney

After holding a 70 point lead over rival Capital Conference squad Molalla, Coach Steve Thorpe’s Husky wrestlers set a goal on Friday at the district tournament.

“We met as a team and decided we want to win by more than 100 points,” Coach Thorpe said.

His Huskies pulled through, racking up 382.5 points to Molalla’s 231.5. Following the leaders were: Cascade, 213.5; North Marion, 181.5; Stayton, 178; Sisters, 104.5.

The Huskies saw four individuals crowned district champions: Cody Sells, 112; Jon Farris, 125; Shane Vandehei, 130 and Tregor Tagle, 135.

Four others were runners up: Joe McCaslin, 103; Thomas Helfrich, 140; Jesse Aitken, 215 and Chris Kelley, 275.

“We wrestled our heart out,” Coach Thorpe said of the win. “A lot of credit goes to the coaching staff that worked hard with the guys all week on personal goals. It paid off.”

Coach Thorpe said Monday morning that day’s practice was going to be “the hardest of the year” and then he planned to trim down the workouts toward the state tournament which runs Thursday through Saturday. (Note that this year’s tournament will not be held at Memorial Coliseum. It’s being moved to the new pavilion at the State Fairgrounds in Salem.)

The district tournament was hosted by the Sisters Outlaws and Coach Thorpe said, “they ran an incredible tournament.”

“We actually wrestled above ourselves in some weights,” Coach Thorpe admitted. “We beat kids who had beaten us earlier in the year.”

Overall, the Huskies placed 24 of 28 wrestlers and will take 13 to the state meet.

“Our 3A division is tough as nails this year,” Coach Thorpe said. “Estacada is picked to win and they are very tough, they have been all year.”

District results: 103: Joe McCaslin, second; Aris Somatis, fourth; 112: Cody Sells, first; Derrek Sharp, sixth; 119: John Sutten, third; Jake Smith, fourth; 125: Jon Farris, champion; 130: Shane Vandehei, champion; Kyle Albert, third; 135: Trevor Tagle, champion; Nick Pitts, fifth; 140: Thomas Helfrich, second; Ridge McKinney, fifth; 145: Rob Helfrich, fifth; Sawyer Anderson, third; 152: Colton Cooley, third; 160: Colt Campbell, fifth; Brent Woody, sixth; 171: Stephen Kidd, sixth; 189: Brandon Martin, third; 215: Jesse Aitken, second; Mike Allyn fourth; 275: Chris Kelley, second; Matt Parker, sixth.

How they placed in the semis and finals:

103: Joe McCaslin was decisioned 10-5 by Nate Wixom of Stayton.

112: Cody Sells pinned Stephan Kaster of Molalla in 4:34.

119: third place, John Sutten pinned Jake Smith of SHHS.

125: Jon Farris dec. Isaac Gordon of Sisters 6-5.

130: Shane Vandehei dec. Josh Beach of Molalla 4-2.

130: third place, Kyle Albert pinned Chad Kernutt of Sisters in 1:26.

135: Trevor Tagle dec. David Smith of Stayton 2-1.

145: third place, Sawyer Anderson dec. Andrew Kuznetsov of Molalla 14-12.

152: third place, Colton Cooley pinned Jake Klient of Sisters in 4:48.

189: third place, Brandon Martin scored an 8-0 major decision over Brandon Coleman of Cascade.

215: Jesse Aitken, runner up, was dec. 9-5 by Josh Thatcher of Stayton.

275: Chris Kelley, runner-up, was pinned by Jason Mentzer of Cascade in 3:26.

Making the trip to the state tournament: John Sutten, 119; Shane Vandehei, 130; Joe McCaslin, 103; Jon Farris and Kyle Albert, 130; Cody Sells, 112; Trevor Tagle, 135; Thomas Helfrich, 140; Jesse Aitken, 215; Colton Cooley, 152; Brandon Martin, 189 and Chris Kelley, 275.