There's nothing wrong with being second best in the entire state.
In fact, that's quite an accomplishment.
Bryan Cuthbertson knows all too well all about it.
Last year, as a Sherwood High School sophomore, he placed second in the 220-pound weight class at the Class 6A state wrestling tournament. He then went on to take second place in both the shot put and discus events at the Class 6A state track and field championships last spring.
While second place is nice, Cuthbertson, as he looks ahead to the 2020 Class 6A state wrestling tourney, is ready to take things up a notch.
"I've been second enough. I'm done with that," Cuthbertson said back on Feb. 15, after he won the title in the 220-pound weight class at the Pacific Conference district tournament, which was held at Liberty High School.
Cuthbertson will get his chance at the upcoming Class 6A state wrestling tournament, which will be held Friday and Saturday at Portland's Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Cuthbertson, and his Bowmen teammates appear to be ready to make plenty of noise at the state tourney.
"I want a state title. That's the goal," Cuthbertson said. "It's really been the goal since last year, after going as far as I did."
Last year, as a sophomore, Cuthbertson place third at the Pacific Conference district tournament, and he was unseeded going into the state event. But he battled his way to the 220-pound state title bout, where he fell to Beaverton's Sandrey Mitberg.
"Last year, I didn't have my mind set on that, because I didn't think it was possible," Cuthbertson said. "But, after what I did, this year, my mind has been on that. Being on top of that podium at the state tournament is what I'm focused on. There's not a better accomplishment in the state than that."
This year, Cuthbertson, who is 37-1 on the season, enters the state tournament as the No. 1 seed at 220 pounds. He's also ready to put in the work to make sure he puts himself in a position to claim the state title.
"I've got two weeks to get ready," Cuthbertson said at the district tournament. "It's going out there and making sure my weight is controlled, so that's not a problem, and working hard every day. It's just working harder than I every have. You have to be ready for everything. I'm looking forward to it."
Meanwhile, Sherwood sophomore Ethan Ritchie, who placed sixth at 106 pounds at state last year, is also taking high hopes to this year's tourney.
"I'm looking to get back on the podium, maybe even win it," said Ritchie, who is the No. 2 seed at 106 pounds. "That's the goal. That's always been the goal. It's going to take a lot of hard work in the next couple weeks, and a lot of determination — not giving up."
Bowmen junior Dallen Jolley, the No. 5 seed at 132 pounds, also is looking to have a strong state tournament.
"I'm looking to place, for sure, top three," Jolley said. "It's going to take hard work. Wrestling with my brothers (Halen and Gaven Jolley), that's the main thing. I'm getting both of my brothers in the room."
Other Sherwood wrestlers who will be wrestling at the state tournament include junior Zackary Coenen at 120 pounds, senior Philip Resch at 138, senior Bram Nelson at 145, senior Brody Stevens at 152, sophomore Seth Glenn at 160, senior Ian Glenn at 170 and senior Nick Severson at 285.
"Our team goal is the top six," Jolley said. "Getting a trophy would be nice."
For Tigard, senior Johnny Nomani will be leading the way. Nomani (38-5 on the season), who won a Three Rivers League district title, is the No. 2 seed in the 285-pound weight class for the Class 6A state tournament.
"I want to do my best," Nomani said. "I'm going to do what I can to try and represent my team the best I can."
The Tigers have two other seeded wrestlers for the state tournament. Senior Cameron O'Connor is the No. 7 seed at 113 pounds, and freshman Chase Dennis is the No. 8 seed at 132. Tigard will also have sophomore Atticus Waddell at 106, and senior Zack Vorvick at 145 competing at the state tournament.
For Tualatin, freshman Josue Guttierez is the No. 7 seed at 106 pounds. The Timberwolves will also have junior Josiah Ingham at 132, senior Noah Brooks at 152, senior Cody Van Meter at 182, sophomore Brandon Chin at 195, junior Curtis Strahm at 220, and freshman Braden Moore at 295 competing at the state tournament.
Action at the Class 6A state tournament is set to start at 4 p.m. on Friday, and at 9 a.m. on Saturday. The championship finals will begin at 7 p.m. on Saturday.
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