Three CCHS wrestlers place at Best of the Northwest
Three members of the Crook County High School wrestling team made the trek to La Grande over the weekend to compete in the Best of the Northwest Wrestling Tournament, which was held at Eastern Oregon University.
The tournament, which was open only to individuals who had previously qualified, featured some of the top wrestlers in Oregon, Washington and Idaho.
All three Cowboys placed in the top three at the tournament, with Trevor Martin and Zach Mauras each finishing in second place, while Tucker Bonner was officially tied for third.
Wrestling at 106 pounds, Bonner won his semifinal match by fall, but lost in the championship match by tech fall against Israel Gonzalez of Heritage High School of Vancouver, Washington.
The tournament had an unusual format, with the loser of the championship round competing against the winner of the consolation round for second place.
Bonner was scheduled to wrestle Simon Graeber of Columbia High School from Nampa, Idaho, in the second-place match, but the match did not take place, leaving Graeber and Bonner officially tied for third.
Martin missed most of the regular season with a leg injury, but showed that he is back at full strength with his second-place finish at 126 pounds.
Martin earned technical falls in both the quarterfinals and semifinals, before losing by fall to James Rindlisbaker of North Gem High School of Bancroft, Idaho, in the finals.
Martin did not have to wrestle his second-place match because he had already defeated Caleb Hart of West Albany, the consolation winner earlier in the tournament.
Mauras was expected to win the 132-pound championship. As expected, he won his first three matches, defeating Blake Beal of Skyview, Washington, in the opening round, Michael Barfuss of North Gem in the quarterfinals, and Joshua Scott of Columbia in the semifinals.
However, Mauras lost to Chad Muenzer of Hood River Valley by injury default in the championship match, leaving Mauras in second place.
Mauras had defeated Muenzer at the Intermountain Conference Championships and at the state tournament.
Despite having just three wrestlers, Crook County finished third in the team scoring, finishing with 42 points.
Columbia won the tournament with 58.5 points, while Borah High School of Boise, Idaho, was in second with 43.
La Grande High School finished in fourth with 40.5 points, while Tri-Cities Wrestling Club rounded out the top five with 40 points.
Wrestlers from 49 schools or clubs competed in the tournament.