Highlander Wrestling Edges out Shorewood in Spartan Cup Battle

Shorecrest Highlander Wrestling Team - 2023

It was the battle for the Spartan Cup Friday night, January 27, 2023 as the Shorewood Stormrays (formally known as the Thunderbirds) hosted the visiting Shorecrest Highlanders. Shorecrest won the trophy last season and the Stormrays were hungry to have it back.

Shorewood built an early lead with the help of their highly favored heavy weights. Shorewood Seniors Hunter Tibodeau (Shorewood Senior Captain, ranked 1st in Washington State 3A Division @ 220lbs) and Milan Johnson (285lbs) delivered a pair of first round pins against Shorecrest wrestlers Mateo Dominguez (freshman) and Evan Claar (senior) to start their team at a 12 point advantage.

However, the momentum changed when the 182lb wrestlers stepped onto the mat. SC’s Carter Nichols, just starting the sport of wrestling this season as sophomore, put up 6 points for the Scots with an unexpected pin. Immediately after that, Shorecrest received a forfeit at 113 pounds with Neta Navot, narrowing the team score to 12 - 18.

Shorewood responded by sending junior Owen Mulder out against sophomore Micah Fergerson at 120lbs. Micah, more comfortable competing at 113lbs, was standing in for SCHS senior George Fernandez, who wasn't able to attend the event. Mulder ended up pinning Fergerson, putting up six more team points for the Stormrays.

The Highlanders then sent out long time Rhino Wrestling Club member and SCHS team captain Joseph Martinez at 126lbs; but the Stormrays decided to deny Martinez the experience of wrestling the final dual meet match of his career and forfeited the 126lb spot, giving away six team points to the Highlanders.

At the 132lb contest, SC’s Kaiju Fergerson bumped up from 126lbs to face off with Stormray sophomore Masa Taura, who pinned Fergerson late in the third round, leaving Shorewood with a 30-18 lead.

As the dual moved into the middle weights, the Highlanders rallied hard, realizing they had a good chance to edge out the Stormrays if they won the next few matches. With a second round pin at 138lbs by SC’s Kenneth Adams (sophomore), the Scots gained six more team points.

At 145lbs, SCHS Coach Bryan Officer decided to substitute Shammy King (junior), wrestling for his second time ever in a varsity level dual meet, for Avi Wylen (long time Seattle Wrestling Club member. Wylen (SCHS freshman) has demonstrated tremendous promise this season, but had a minor setback earlier this week due to a shoulder injury. To the Highlander’s delight, King scored two takedowns in the first round, and then pinned Shorewood’s Jonathon Burkholder early in the second round. This turn of events allowed the Scots to tie up the score at 30 points with just three bouts remaining.

Shammy King, Shorecrest Junior

At 152 pounds Shorecrest’s Peter Grimm (junior) caught Shorewood senior captain Isaac Van Horn in a move called the “serpical” early in the match, nearly pinning him. Van Horn escaped the pin, but succumbed to Grimm’s unorthodox leg riding skills, allowing Grimm to grab a 5-0 lead by the end of the first period. In the second and third rounds Grimm was able to control the action and shut down Van Horn to earn a major decision (8 match points; 4 team points) that gave Shorecrest their first lead of the night.

With just two matches left Shorewood had zero margin for error. At 160 pounds the Stormrays sent out Junior Mak Kanzler against Shorecrest’s Shokan Conway-Yasuyama. Kanzler was able to win a minor decision against Yasuyama, putting up another 3 team points for the Stormrays.

With Shorecrest now in a narrow 34 to 33 lead, the final bout was between Scot senior captain Max Rutledge and Stormray Nathaniel Hernandez. Hernandez was unable to withstand the physicality and constant pressure from Rutledge. The Scot’s 170lb senior racked up 16 points against Hernandez (17-1; tech fall) to give the Highlanders a final margin of victory of 39 to 33.

Head Coach Bryan Officer, Assistant Max Uhm and the “Spartan Cup” Trophy

Shorecrest Boys Wrestling Record: 5-1 WESCO South, 6-2 Overall

Shorecrest 39 - Shorewood 33

@ Shorewood High School

*Match began at 182 pounds

106: Double forfeit

113: Neta Navot (SC) win by forfeit

120: Owen Mulder (SW) pinned Micah Fergerson 2:51

126: Joseph Martinez (SC) win by forfeit

132: Masa Taura (SW) pinned Kaiju Fergerson 3:36

138: Kenneth Adams (SC) pinned Mitchell Ichinkhorloo 2:40

145: Shammy King Jr. (SC) pinned Jonathan Burkholder 2:32

152: Peter Grimm (SC) maj. dec. Isaac Van Horn 8-0

160: Mak Kanzler (SW) dec. Shokan Conway-Yasuyama 7-0

170: Max Rutledge (SC) tech. fall Nathaniel Hernandez 17-1

*182: Alberto Solano (SW) win by forfeit

195: Carter Nichols (SC) pinned Matt Burns 3:31

220: Hunter Tibodeau (SW) pinned Mateo Dominguez 1:10

285: Milan Johnson (SW) pinned Evan Claar 1:28

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