After its strongest performance at the Culver Invitational in a decade, Madras wrestling appears as strong as ever.

PMG PHOTO: ANDY DIECKHOFF - Madras senior Reece White coasted to a first place finish in the 182-pound division at the Culver Invitational on Saturday, Dec. 11. White is coming off a season in which he finished second at state.Madras wrestling showed what it was made of at the Culver Invitational this past weekend.

The team was at full strength for the first time this season, and the results that followed were just as strong.

The White Buffalos ended up with five individual winners and finished third overall at the local tournament, which included nearly 30 schools spanning all six OSAA classifications.

PMG PHOTO: ANDY DIECKHOFF - Madras' Carlos Torres outlasted Culver's Thadius Brown in the championship bout of the 126-pound bracket at the Culver Invitational on Saturday, Dec. 11. Torres was a state qualifier last year for the Buffs.Carlos Torres was the first Madras wrestler to win big on the boys' side on Saturday, defeating Thadius Brown of Culver to take top spot in the 126-pound class.

"I just had to keep my mindset up and go to work," said Torres after the final.

"My goal for this season is to go and win (a state championship)," he added. "Because why not?"

That quest is off to a good start after Torres worked through his bracket.

"I just need to keep drilling hard and pushing myself," he added. "I know I'll get there."

PMG PHOTO: ANDY DIECKHOFF - Madras junior Brady David was tops in the 160-pound weight class at the Culver Invitational on Saturday, Dec. 11. David is now 8-1 on the season after placing third in the 170-pound bracket in Sisters last week.Next up under the spotlight was Brady David, fresh off a third-place finish in Sisters the week before. While he took bronze at 170 pounds, David found better luck in Culver wrestling at 160. The junior defeated Garrett Forbes of La Pine, who took first at 160 in last week's event in Sisters.

Rounding out the male wrestlers to stand atop the podium, Reece White made his season debut in style. The senior won his first two bouts in a combined total of 35 seconds before slowing down a bit as he cruised to a title at 182 pounds. White pinned his quarterfinal opponent in 1:40, advanced through the semis with a 12-2 major decision and then beat La Pine's Dylan Hankey by a 10-4 decision in the championship bout.

As for the girls team, they continued their hot start to the season.

Arianna Flores and Itzel Andrade picked up where Lucia Sevilla left off last week, each winning their respective brackets in the girls event at the invitational.

Flores and Andrade both credited their success to some additional training with the Warriors of Christ wrestling team (WOC), which is run by Samuel Flores, an uncle to both girls.

"He's the best," said Arianna Flores of Samuel. "I've been going to practice with him every week, and that's been helping me."

"I practice with WOC, too," added Andrade. "It just helps me prepare and get out of my head mentally."

Overall, the performance was one of the best showings the Madras team has had in Culver in many years — and it serves as a promising sign for the season to come.

You count on us to stay informed and we depend on you to fund our efforts. Quality local journalism takes time and money. Please support us to protect the future of community journalism.

Have a thought or opinion on the news of the day? Get on your soapbox and share your opinions with the world. Send us a Letter to the Editor!