TIGARD — It certainly looked like Sandrey Mitberg was going to have to settle for the second-place medal.
Near the midway point of the third, and final, round of his 220-pound championship match with Tigard High School senior Carter Dennis, Mitberg, a Beaverton junior, was facing a 5-1 deficit against the Tiger standout.
Yes, it looked like Mitberg was destined for second place.
But he had different ideas. Mitberg wasn't about to lose that match, or the title.
Powered by that determination, Mitberg rallied in the final 1 minute and 15 seconds of the title bout to get a 6-5 win over Dennis during action at the Tigard Tournament, a bracketed wrestling event held Saturday at Tigard High School.
"It means a good amount," Mitberg said of winning the tournament title. "I didn't expect (Dennis) to be that good, and I have to give it to him, he did really well. I just caught him at the end. It was a really good match."
With his championship, Mitberg provided the big highlight for Beaverton at the tournament, as well as helping the Beavers take ninth place in the team standings at the event with 76.5 points. St. Helens finished first with a score of 266. West Salem was second at 235 and the host Tigard squad was third at 223.5.
Mitberg opened the tournament by pinning Jefferson's Safia Greenwood in a time of 42 seconds. In the quarterfinal, Mitberg picked up another pin, this time beating Wilsonville's Jake Moore in 3:02. In the semifinals, Mitberg posted a 19-4 technical fall win over Jaiden Dunton from West Salem.
That put Mitberg into the 220-pound tournament title match against Dennis.
In that bout, after a scoreless first round, Dennis took a 1-0 lead with an escape coming with 1:53 left in the second round. Dennis followed that up with a takedown, giving the Tigard senior a 3-0 advantage with 1:28 remaining in the period.
Mitberg came back with an escape, cutting the lead to 3-1 with 19 seconds left in the round. But, with just two seconds remaining in the period, Dennis scored on another takedown, giving him a 5-1 lead going into the third round.
That's when Mitberg's determination set in.
"I just thought to myself, 'no,'" he said. "It's a mindset for me, it's 'no, no, no, no, it's not happening.' I was not going to be denied."
Mitberg scored on a reversal to trim the margin to 5-3 with 1:15 remaining in the match. Mitberg was then able to get a 3-point nearfall with just 10 seconds remaining.
"The reversal, I had been trying to hit all night. I finally hit it," Mitberg said. "Then, I got my little half (nelson), with legs, I was able to hold that for about 45 seconds. When I first got it, I didn't think he was going to tip, but I sunk it even deeper, and I kept waiting, and I looked at the ref like, 'are you going to call it (a nearfall)?'"
Mitberg then held Dennis down for the final few seconds to wrap up the win, and the tournament championship.
"At the end, it was just relief, basically," he said.
Also for Beaverton at the Tigard Tournament, freshman Elliot Mitberg placed fourth at 126 pounds, senior Parker Inman was fourth at 132, junior Miguel Solares was fifth at 195 and senior Ryan Turner was sixth at 285.
"It went alright," Sandrey Mitberg said of the team effort. "Overall, I think we did pretty well."
Prior to the tournament, Beaverton scored a 60-23 win over Southridge in a Metro League dual match held last Thursday at Beaverton High School. With the win, the Beavers improved to 1-2 in Metro League matches.
Beaverton won four matches by fall in the win over the Skyhawks. Beaverton junior Drew Field won the 138-pound match in a time of 0:56. Junior Vincent Vanzuylen triumphed at 145 in 5:56. Solares won the 195 match in 2:42 and Turner won at 285 in 0:48.
Also for Beaverton at the dual, freshman Reeya Tamang (106 pounds), sophomore Fernanda Guzman (120), Elliot Mitberg (126), freshman Huthan Ngyen (132), sophomore Maria Gallindo Reeder (182) and Sandrey Mitberg (220) all won by forfeit.
The Beavers will be back in action on Saturday, when they compete at the Joe Stewart Invitational, to be held at Rex Putnam High School.
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