Wrestlers travel to girls regional qualifier
Kennedy High School freshman Alexandra Geschwell is used to wrestling against boys.
As the lone girl in the Trojans wrestling program, she practices against boys, and at the 2A/1A level, there are few other female wrestlers to compete against. She has wrestled against boys for the majority of this season.
But that wasn't the case at the 2020 Girls North Regional tournament on Saturday in Hillsboro.
Geschwell represented the navy blue and maroon colors of JFK in the 125-pound weight bracket, and while she failed to place and earn a trip to the state championship tournament later this month, she enjoyed her best finish at a tournament this year, going 2-2 overall and advancing to the fourth round of the consolation bracket.
"It was a big eye-opener for her," Kennedy head coach Dewey Enos said. "She has reached new levels, because I don't think she's ever gone 2-2 at a tournament."
A season of wrestling against boys somewhat masked Geschwell's strength on the mat, Enos said, but against a neutral tournament field she proved capable of going up against some of the state's best.
"Most of the times when she wrestles boys, they can just overpower her," Enos said. "But here, she's pretty strong."
Geschwell opened the tournament with a tough draw, facing top-seeded sophomore Bella Amaro, who finished third in state last year and went on to win her bracket on Saturday.
It was a quick loss in the first round for the Kennedy freshman, but in the consolation side of the bracket, she shined.
Geschwell bounced back with a first-round pin of her own, eliminating Hillsboro's Skylar Rissel in 1:44. She followed with pin of Warrenton's Divine Godwin 10 seconds into the second round.
Geschwell's run fell one round shy of the consolation quarterfinals in a 10-0 major decision loss to Sunset's Skyeler Bala, but the overall experience was a positive one.
"She's learned so much from not just wrestling guys, but showing up at that girls tournament, she learned a lot," Enos said. "The boy tournaments have kind of fine-tuned a lot of things."
The lone representative for North Marion, Hellen Chavez, went 4-2 in the 120-pound bracket, advancing to the consolation quarterfinals on Saturday.
Chavez opened her tournament with a third-round pin of Keyla Pliego of David Douglas before falling in a 14-10 decision to Jordan Barrett of Ontario.
The Huskies junior eliminated her next three competitors, picking up first round pins over Liberty's Leah Hawkes, Westview's Madeline Curaming and Hood River Valley's Ximena Galvez to advance to the cusp of the placement rounds.
Chavez concluded her tournament with a 9-1 major decision loss to Hillsboro's Juliana Raabe, who went on to place sixth in the bracket.
The Woodburn girl's team brought six wrestlers to the regional tournament, placing 26th overall.
Though none of the Bulldogs qualified for state, four of the team's representatives advanced to the quarterfinals before falling to the consolation side of the bracket.
The team's competitors included Yajaira Reyes (110 pounds, 2-2), Angie Lopez (115, 2-2), Isabella Renner (145 0-2), Jasmine Lopez (145, 2-2), Ericka Petronilo (155, 1-2) and Areli Valtierra (190, 0-2).
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