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The Timberwolves start off Three Rivers League action with a 60-18 win over the Lakers

PMG PHOTO: DAN BROOD - Tualatin High School junior Chad Kailuli (right) is in control in his 126-pound match against Lake Oswego's Riis Hinrichs. Kailuli scored an 11-4 decision victory.LAKE OSWEGO — It would be very hard to get off to a better start to the season than the start that the Tualatin High School wrestling team has enjoyed.

The Timberwolves opened their 2019-20 campaign by taking first place at the Kirk Morey Invitational, held Dec. 6 at Reynolds High School. Tualatin then showed that it is more that just a strong tourney team, as it opened up its Three Rivers League dual match schedule by powering its way to a 60-18 win over Lake Oswego in a contest held Dec. 12 at Lake Oswego High School.

"It went pretty good," said Tualatin junior Curtis Strahm, who won the 220-pound match at Lake Oswego by fall. "First dual meet of the season, and we've got stuff to improve on, but all-around I think it was a great dual meet. It's a pretty good start."

"This was very important," said Tualatin junior Chad Kailuli, who won by decision at 126 pounds. "It's our first dual meet, so it's important. We take it really seriously, and we did good."

The Wolves, with the strong start to the season, now are determined to keep the success going.

"We just work hard in the wrestling room. That's all," Kailuli said. "We're just going to keep working hard, keep grinding."

Lake Oswego got off to a strong start in last week's league dual match, getting wins by fall at 106 and 113 pounds to take a 12-0 lead. Tualatin freshman Josue Guttierez then picked up a forfeit victory at 120, cutting the Lake Oswego lead to 12-6.

At 126 pounds, Kailuli, getting a 3-point nearfall as the third round ended, posted an 11-4 decision victory over Lake Oswego's Riis Hinrichs, trimming the Laker lead to 12-9.

"It went OK, not as I expected, but it was good," Kailuli said of his win. "My leg rides got me the win. I did good on leg-riding, but I need to work more on getting better takedowns, and getting better from that."

PMG PHOTO: DAN BROOD - Tualatin High School senior Noah Brooks (top) is on his way to getting a first-round pin against Lake Oswego's Bennett Friess during their 160-pound match.Tualatin junior Josiah Ingham, at 132, and sophomore Gabe Ingham, at 138, each were awarded forfeit victories, giving the Wolves a 21-12 advantage in the team score.

Lake Oswego got a pin by Braden Mauch at 145 pounds, cutting the Tualatin lead to 21-18, but it was all Timberwolves after that.

Tualatin sophomore Jose Gorgoni-Flores got a forfeit win at 152, giving the Wolves a 27-18 lead.

Senior Noah Brooks, at 160 pounds, then got Tualatin's first pin of the match. Brooks started fast in his match with Lake Oswego's Bennett Friess, scoring on a takedown just 17 seconds into the first round. Brooks then pinned Friess at the 0:51 mark of the match, upping the Wolves' lead to 33-18.

At 170, Tualatin senior Jake Reser battled his way to a 4-1 decision victory over Lake Oswego's Lucas Cuyuch.

Reser scored on a takedown to take a 2-0 lead with 1:17 left in the first round. Cuyuch came back with an escape coming with just eight seconds left in the second round, cutting Reser's lead to 2-1 going into the third round. But Reser scored on an escape with 1:34 remaining in the match to wrap up his 4-1 decision win, which gave the Wolves a 36-18 margin in the team score at that point.

At 182 pounds, Tualatin sophomore Jacob Helton was awarded a forfeit victory. At 195, Tualatin sophomore Brandon Chin won by fall in a time of 0:20, upping the Timberwolf lead to 48-18.

Strahm, wresting Lake Oswego's William Dolan, followed with a first-round pin of his own. Strahm scored on a takedown 23 seconds into the match, and then he pinned Dolan at the 1:22 mark of the first round, giving the Wolves a 54-18 lead.

PMG PHOTO: DAN BROOD - Tualatin High School junior Curtis Strahm (right) takes down Lake Oswego's William Dolan on his way to scoring a first-round pin in their 220-pound match."I know I always have stuff to improve on. Everybody does, because no one is a perfect athlete. I think it was a decent match," Strahm said of his victory. "Just setting the tempo, and controlling the inside. I think, ultimately, having the better tempo is what won me the match."

Tualatin freshman Braden Moore received a forfeit victory at 285 pounds to wrap up the Wolves' 60-18 dual-match victory.

Following the win over Lake Oswego, Tualatin finished in 28th place in the team standings at the Rose City Championships, held Friday and Saturday at Westview High School.

The Wolves will be back in action this Saturday, when they compete at the Liberty Invitational, which will be held at Liberty High School.

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