Wrestlers second, behind Roseburg, at Cottage Grove; JV third at Elmira

Sweet Home’s wrestlers started their 2006-07 campaign Saturday at tournaments at Elmira and Cottage Grove.

The Huskies varsity team placed second at Cottage Grove, losing in the finals to Roseburg 49-21. Sweet Home beat Waldport in the first round of the dual-meet-style tournament, 84-0, as every Husky wrestler won by fall or by forfeit.

In the second round, the Huskies defeated Sutherlin 60-15, and in the third round, they downed __________ 42-36.

“We had some guys who competed the entire time,” said Coach Steve Thorpe. “Taylor Tagle and Danny Johnson both fought off their backs to come back and win.”

Tagle, a 103-pound freshman, Johnson, a junior wrestling at 112 pounds, and senior Rob Helfrich, at 189 pounds, all won out to take their individual weight titles.

“It’s early in the year,” Thorpe said. “The way we train, we focus totally on January and February. It’s good to wrestle good competition and kind of gauge where we’re at right now.”

Meanwhile, in the Elmira tournament, the Sweet Home second- and third-string wrestlers finished third out of 10 teams, behind Cascade and North Bend. The Huskies finished ahead of Philomath (fourth).

Mitchell Grove (103) and Matt Grove (112), both freshmen, were first-place finishers for Sweet Home. Both pinned all three of their opponents en route to their individual championships. KC Hanscam (135) and Andrew Knight (160) both lost in the finals to place second for the Huskies.

“Our young guys were not intimidated,” Thorpe said.

The Huskies will be back on the mat this afternoon, Dec. 6, hosting Cascade, South Albany and Gladstone at 4 p.m. in their first home match. On Friday, Dec. 8, they will host Lebanon, Elmira and Sisters, also at 4 p.m. The Sweet Home Mat Club will hold its tournament Saturday morning at 10 a.m.