Wildcats can't hang on

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Two of the top KingCo wrestling teams gathered at Mount Si last week to battle it out in what could be a match to determine the dual meet champions for the league.

Liberty and Mount Si have historically gone back and forth in winning the matchup, but this year it was Liberty who pulled out the win in the end, 38-30.

It was a battle all the way as Mount Si pulled to within two with Dylan Seubert's pin in the 215-pound class over Liberty's Kyle Schott. The chance at victory came down to sophomore Cory Anderson for Mount Si and Nathan Schaefer for Liberty. Schaefer took Anderson to the mat about midway through the first round, then went on to pin him with 33 seconds left in the round.

The Wildcats had to make for momentum lost in the early going. "We gave up too many decisions," said Mount Si wrestling coach Bruce Caldwell.

One match that could have gone either way was the Wildcat's Nick Martindale wrestling veteran Mark Rowe, who was competing up two weight classes. Martindale controlled the match up to the third round when Rowe, realizing he was losing, recorded a reversal and two takedowns to win the match 6-5. At the end of the match it was obvious that Rowe had a newfound respect for the young Martindale.

Another match that had the crowd on their feet was between the Wildcats' Jordan Prior and Liberty's Ryan Bamford at 119 pounds. The first score of the match came in the second round after an escape by Bamford and subsequent takedown. Prior escaped, but Bamford came back with another takedown.

In the third, Prior started from the down position and escaped quickly. Bamford took him to the mat again, though, late in the match. Finally, with seconds ticking away, Prior scored the reversal then turned Bamford to score a three-point nearfall, tying the match at seven points each.

In overtime both wrestlers were patient, hand fighting for position. But it was Bamford who shot at Prior's legs, eventually turning him for the takedown and the win, 9-7.

Other pins by the Wildcats came from Jason Rothgeb at 103 pounds with 1:44 left in the first round; Alex Haas at 112 pounds with 1:22 left in the first round; Kyle Jacobsen at 152 pounds with 1:25 left in the second round; and Nick Ippolito at 171 pounds with 30 seconds left in the first round.

This week the Wildcats take on Highline on Thursday and then travel to the Kennedy Invitational on Saturday.

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