MVC's Winchester wins open title

Tuesday, January 7, 2014
By CHRIS ALLEN/Sports Editor

Senior Brittany Jones was among six Lady Vikings who medaled in the Waldorf (Iowa) Open, splitting four matches to place fourth.
(Chris Allen/Democrat-News)
[Click to enlarge]
FOREST CITY, Iowa -- The Missouri Valley College women's wrestling team won six medals, one gold, Saturday during the Waldorf Open at Forrest City, Iowa.

Wrestling unattached, second-ranked junior Jacarra Winchester breezed through the 130-pound field with four convincing wins. After a 12-2 technical fall in the opener, Winchester pinned No. 5 Lindenwood junior Rachel Factora in the quarterfinals and notched an 11-0 tech fall in the semifinal against Waldorf sophomore Justice Losee.

In the championship match, Winchester upset top-ranked Oklahoma City sophomore Rachel McFarland, 8-0.

Two other Lady Vikings reached the finals undefeated before settling for silver medals. Sixth-rated senior Frances Elfiong (143 pounds) got to the trophy round on a 10-0 technical fall and injury default before dropping a 6-0 tilt No. 3 Oklahoma City sophomore Stephanie Geltmacher.

Sophomore Jessica Ulloa, unranked at 191 pounds, won a 6-2 decision in the first round and pinned No. 10 Lindenwood freshman Meghan Freeman in the semifinals. However, she was upended in the title bout by third-ranked Oklahoma City freshman Heather O'Connor with a 12-2 technical fall.

Valley's remaining three medals were for fourth place as ninth-ranked senior Brittany Jones (170), senior Mayleen Soto (136) and freshman Christy Powell (123) each went 2-2.

Also picking up wins for the Lady Vikings were sophomore Samantha Higa (123) and freshman Precious Jaramillo (123).

The eighth-ranked Valley team is scheduled to be in Des Moines this coming weekend for the NWCA National Duals.

Contact Chris Allen at callen@marshallnews.com

Girls compete with the boys on wrestling teams
Posted: Tuesday, January 7, 2014 4:50 pm

 By A.L. Shaff Special to the Sahuarita Sun  |  0 comments 

SHS grappler

This is a story of three brave young women, three high school girls making the most of their chances and enjoying the thrill of competitive sports.
Addie Wolfley and Britnee Coss, at Walden Grove High School, and Jordan Frink at Sahuarita High School, compete as varsity team members on their high school wrestling teams.
Ninth-grader Jordan Frink wrestles at 106 pounds on the Mustangs varsity. At Walden Grove, junior Britnee Coss also wrestles on the varsity at 106 pounds, with sophomore Addie Wolfley competing at 145 pounds.

Sahuarita may be the only school district in Arizona that can boast of three females competing on the mats at the varsity level.

Sahuarita coach Jim Anders calls Jordan Frink one of the hardest workers in the wrestling room.

"She's become a little leery about shooting for a take-down right now because she's been over-powered and caught, but that's a matter of experience and building herself up physically. The guys accept her not just as a "girl wrestler" but as an equal member of their team who can score needed points."

"But, they also don't give me any favors or take it easy on me," Jordan admits. "Coach Anders expects me to work as hard as they do and to take the punishment that's part of wrestling. That's the way it should be."

"When I tell kids in school that I'm a wrestler on the school team, they almost always answer the same way with "No you don't! You're too pretty to do that!' Or they just stare at me."

Walden Grove, claims not one but two female wrestlers on their varsity squad.

Coss had wrestled in Michigan before moving to Arizona with parents Anthony and Lilia Coss who live in Rancho Sahaurita. But that was the international Olympic free style, so it has taken time to adjust to the American "collegiate" style.

Asked why she wants to wrestle, Britnee smiles broadly and answers, "Honestly, I love this sport and it's the only sport I've ever done. As my teammate friend Addie said, 'I like the challenge because it's the toughest of all high school sports.'"

"My goal for this season is to get as many wins as possible for my team. To get stronger and learn more moves because this sport is my passion!"

Red Wolves coach Art Gonzalez says about Britnee, "She's coming along really well. The girls don't have much choice but to get better if they're going to compete with the guys. They need more experience which will come slowly."

When Sahuarita and Walden Grove clashed in a dual meet earlier in the year, Frink and Coss squared off in the 106 pound match. In perhaps the most exciting match of the evening, they traded the lead with takedowns and escapes right through the third round, until Coss finally pulled out an 11-9 decision.

Addie Wolfley, the other female Red Wolf wrestler, faces an even tougher time because she competes in a weight class where male opponents possess a combination of speed, agility and strength.

While the lighter weights such as 106 or 132 rely on quickness and the heavier weights use their size, the middle weights of 138, 145, 154 and 160 retain their speed and possess added physical power. Every time Addie steps on the mat, she expects a tough competitor at perfect muscle strength and with experience.

"I wrestled in middle school for a year, then I stopped when I came to Walden Grove. But, I wanted to get in shape, plus my friends kept asking me to come back to a sport I love," Addie says about becoming a Red Wolf wrestler.

"When other girls find out I'm on the wrestling team, they go, 'Wow! I couldn't do that!' But I can because I like to challenge myself. I like learning the strategies of this sport. Besides, it's just a fun sport!"

Sahuarita High School Athletic Director Chris Fanning sees only positives in allowing females to join the teams.

"It's great that wrestling provides another opportunity for anyone regardless of sex. I really admire the girls who take on this challenge," he says.


Posted: Wednesday, January 8, 2014 11:21 am

IHS boys team fare well against tough competition
CASTLE ROCK — The Ilwaco High School wrestling team placed four wrestlers in the top five and finished seventh at the 18 team Jim Bair Invitational at Castle Rock Jan. 4.

 Senior Tom Odneal continued his winning ways, taking first place in the 170-pound bracket. Odneal has yet to lose a match this season, and is currently 14-0.

In the 132 pound division, Riki Thompson placed third. Keishi Thompson placed fifth in the 138 pound division, as did Matt McDonald in the 285 pound weight class.

“(It was a ) good quality tournament and the toughest competition we will see until our state tournament,” said coach Kevin McNulty of the meet. “Nice to see some other teams from around the state and a good measuring stick of where we need to be by postseason.”

The Fishermen have a busy week ahead, starting Thursday when they will host a double dual meet. They round out the week at the Pacific Rim Tournament at Seaside High School on Friday and Saturday.

IHS girls place at Elma

ELMA — While the Ilwaco boys were busy wrestling in Castle Rock, the Ilwaco girls were competing in Elma, where four finished third or better.

Maria Mondragon finished second to lead the way for the Lady Fishermen. Marilyn Thompson, Jennifer Navarre and Hilda Mondragon all placed third in their respective weight classes.

Wrestling grows in smaller classes, but struggles continue in Division I

Jan. 8, 2014

Wrestling started out at Grand View as an ancillary benefit to a facility surplus.

The Vikings were launching their football program seven years ago when a weight-room expansion project left the school with leftover second-floor space inside the Charles S. Johnson Wellness Center.

Grand View president Kent Henning looked at the vacant room, considered his school’s enrollment goals and an NAIA powerhouse program was born a year later.

The top-ranked Vikings are in pursuit of a third straight title this weekend at the Multi-Division National Duals inside the Iowa Events Center. Henning chuckled this week when asked if Grand View wrestling would even be part of the conversation had it not been for that leftover room where the Vikings now train.

“I suppose there’s a possibility we may not have added wrestling in 2008,” he said. “We were very interested in it because of the ratio of high school wrestlers to college rosters. But the expansion onto the wellness center gave us our start.”

More specific, Grand View’s strategy to boost enrollment through athletics was the foundation in the program construction. Other schools have followed the blueprint in recent years, evidenced by a look at this weekend’s field.

Nearly 40 percent of the 76 programs competing at the Multi-Division National Duals were started in the last 13 years. In all, almost 100 new programs, including six in Iowa, have been created since 2001.

“We’re having a terrific run right now (adding programs in) D-II, D-III, NAIA and women,” National Wrestling Coaches Association executive director Mike Moyer said. “I’m so excited about that.”

But Moyer also acknowledges the challenges the sport faces at its most visible level. Division I has dwindled from 146 to 77 programs during the past three decades and Boston University is planning to discontinue wrestling after this season.

Moyer said the sport is taking measures to protect its turf, but he said “the business model is very different” at the bigger schools that “are not so enrollment driven.”

There are signs of optimism in other corners of the country. Grand Canyon University will make the jump to college wrestling’s top level in the 2017-18 season. There’s hope other small schools playing Division I sports could adopt wrestling to boost enrollment.

Initially, Henning hoped wrestling might bring a couple of dozen new students to campus. The school recently purchased a Des Moines bowling alley that is being transformed into a wrestling facility that will accommodate coach Nick Mitchell’s 60-man roster. Throw in the two national titles the Vikings have won and their work in the classroom — Grand View has finished fourth in NAIA in team GPA the past two seasons — and Henning considers the addition of wrestling as a smashing success.

“We really did not have the idea that we would be so successful so soon, but that comes back to great coaches,” he said. “When you put a great leader in front of a program like that, this is what could happen.”


Bettendorf climbed five spots in the national rankings after its performance last weekend at The Clash in Rochester, Minn. The Bulldogs moved up to No. 27 in the InterMat Fab 50 after finishing sixth in the 32-team field and beating then-No. 13 Marist (Ill.) and No. 17 Bound Brook (N.J.) along the way. Bettendorf state champs Fredy Stroker and Logan Ryan and Mason City’s Kaz Onoo each went 6-0 and made the all-tournament team. ... Southeast Polk moved up to No. 25 nationally after placing fourth at the Cheesehead in Kaukauna, Wis. Nolan Hellickson (120) and Ethan Andersen (220) took home titles for the Rams and Waverly-Shell Rock’s Bryce Steiert claimed the 145-pound title.


Grand View coach Nick Mitchell said two-time NAIA heavyweight champion Eric Thompson will be in the lineup this weekend for the Multi-Division National Duals. Thompson defaulted in a Dec. 30 consolation match at the Midlands Championships after suffering a concussion. ... Northern Iowa freshman Dylan Peters notched his 13th pin of the season Saturday against Buffalo’s Mike Soria. He needs two more to move into the top 10 on the school’s single-season falls list. ... Iowa’s 41-0 victory Saturday against Michigan State marked the second time the Spartans have been blanked in their last three trips to Iowa City. For perspective, Iowa hasn’t been shut out in a dual since 1966.


Wrestlers to keep an eye on this weekend at the Multi-Division National Duals in Des Moines:

1. Joey Davis, Notre Dame College, Division II — Defending national champ was one of the top high school prospects in the Class of 2012.

2. Helen Maroulis, Simon Fraser, Women’s — The 2012 World silver medalist is ranked No. 1 at 123 pounds.

3. Eric Thompson, Grand View, NAIA — Two-time national champ clinched last year’s dual title for the Vikings with a fall.

4. Kenny Anderson, Wartburg, Division III — Two-time national champion is ranked No. 1 at 133.

5. Megan Black, King, Women’s — First girl to medal at the Iowa state high school meet is ranked seventh at 130.

Baker girls' wrestling scores narrow win over Sedro-Woolley


THE BELLINGHAM HERALDJanuary 8, 2014 Updated 10 hours ago