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Eight Sweet Home wrestlers headed to national tournaments


July 12, 2016

Eight Sweet Home wrestlers are going to the ASICS/Vaughan Junior & Cadet National Championships July 17-23 in Fargo, N.D.

That is the highest representation from Sweet Home in years, if not ever, Coach Steve Thorpe said.

Wrestlers scheduled to compete in the nationals are Juniors Kobe Olson and Jake Porter; Cadets Nich James, Travis Thorpe, Ricky Yunke and Robbie Yunke; and Marissa Kurtz and Gracie Olson, who will wrestle in the women’s tournament.

Olson, who will wrestle at 132 pounds, won the high school Triple Crown earlier this year with championships in the state high school folkstyle tournament in late February, followed by state titles in freestyle and Greco in April, the two disciplines that will be contested in Fargo. Olson, who will be a senior this fall, is the fifth Sweet Home wrestler to win a Triple Crown.

Porter, a senior-to-be, placed second in both styles in the junior division at the state championships. He will wrestle at 160 pounds.

Ricky Yunke, also a senior this fall, placed fourth in freestyle. He will wrestle at 145 pounds.

Robbie Yunke, who will be a sophomore, placed fifth in freestyle. He will wrestle at 126 pounds.

James and Thorpe will both be freshmen in the fall. Thorpe was a state runner-up in Greco and fifth in freestyle. He will wrestle at 126 pounds. James, third in Greco, will wrestle at 160.

Marissa Kurtz, who will be a sophomore in the fall, was second at 115 pounds in both styles; she will wrestle at 108 pounds. Olson didn’t have any competition in her 105-pound weight division at state in freestyle or Greco, but she split two exhibition matches with Macie Stewart of Thurston, at 115 pounds. Olson was added to the national team after another qualifier withdrew, Thorpe said.

“It’s neat,” said Thorpe, who chairs Oregon Wrestling, the organization that puts together the national team based on qualifying performances at state, and will have administrative responsibilities at the national tournament. “I don’t know if I’ve ever sent that many back there. That’s a lot of money people have to come up with. I’m there at every session.”


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