West Linn cuts Newberg's big lead to 36-32, but then falls short in the final two weights

TIDINGS PHOTO: MILES VANCE - West Linn's Steven Shelofsky grimaces during his 5-1 decision over Kadyn Lauer in their match at 182 pounds on Thursday at West Linn High School.The West Linn wrestling team wanted this one.

The Lions, hosting Tualatin and Newberg in a double dual at West Linn on Thursday, came into the night at 2-0, then knocked off the Timberwolves 45-27 to set up their showdown with the Tigers.

But Newberg — similarly unbeaten at 3-0 after a 63-12 win over Lakeridge earlier in the night — was having none of it. The Tigers sped out to a 24-point lead midway through the match, saw the Lions eventually cut their deficit to four, but then held on to win 48-32.

"It didn't really go in our favor today but guys are going to pick it up," said West Linn senior Taran Floyd, a winner by fall at 160 pounds. "I think it's a little wake-up call for everyone, to let them know that we have to step up our game a little bit so that starts tomorrow."

"We just can't get pinned," added West Linn senior Tyler Good, who won by fall at 195 to bring his team within 36-32. "We're going to work a lot about getting off our back, I'll tell you that. We're going to work a lot of conditioning, which we always do, and this one's going to put us over the top."

The Lions opened the night with a fall by Ricky Bell over Newberg's Harrison Womack at 106, but the Tigers responded with four straight pins of their own to push in front 24-6.

Micah Worthington started that stretch at 113 when he pinned Kaden Goff in the first round, Christopher Strange followed suit with a first-round fall over Daniel Wakefield at 120, Cody Fettig made it three in a row at 126 when he stopped Jack Wall in the first round, and Jonah Worthington made it 24-6 for Newberg when he posted his own first-round pin of Jake Heinan at 132.

West Linn's Cael Brunson stopped the bleeding at 138 when he pinned Ryan Frey with 21 seconds to bring his team within 24-12, but the Tigers answered again, winning at both 145 and 152 to extend their lead to 36-12.

Jack Evans got it done at 145 with a first-round pin of West Linn's Samuel Montagot, and teammate Taylen Reid matched him at 152 by stopping Cade Miller in just 37 seconds for that 36-12 lead.

As daunting as that deficit appeared, the Lions weren't done. They came back with four straight wins and 20 unanswered points to close within 36-32 and set up the night's final two weight classes. Floyd kicked off that stretch by pinning Newberg's Rowan Gallardo with seven seconds remaining in the first period at 160, junior Sean Harman came through next with a 23-8 technical fall victory versus Oliver Myers at 170, Steven Shelofsky posted a 5-1 decision over Kadyn Lauer at 182, and Good followed with his second-round pin of Avian Mendoza at 195 to draw his team within 36-32.

"I actually wasn't the most pleased with how I wrestled today," Floyd said. "I felt I wrestled a little soft, but it let me know where I'm at and what I need to do. I will definitely get back in the (wrestling) room and hit it hard."

For his part, Good was just glad to get back on the mat after losing an overtime decision against Tualatin earlier in the night.

"That one got to me a little bit. It definitely took a toll on me. That one stung a little bit," Good said of his loss to Tualatin's Jarius Jackson, adding that against Newberg, "I came out and I didn't care who I was going to wrestle. I was going to be mad, and I was going to wrestle mad."

But Newberg held the upper hand in the final weights to pull away, with Hunter James notching a second-round pin of Brian MacClanathan at 220, and Tristan Osborn pinning Adrian Sandoval in the second round at 285.

In the 45-27 win over Tualatin, the Lions got pins from Bell, Goff, Wakefield, Brunson, Floyd, Harman and Sandoval.

Next up, the Lions — who also won the Aloha Invitational in Friday — wrestle at Tigard at 7 p.m. Wednesday, then compete in the Oregon Classic in Redmond on Friday and Saturday.

Contact Sports Editor Miles Vance at 503-330-0127 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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