Armed with confidence and positivity, Mount Si junior wrestlers Tryon Kaess and Mark Marum are stamping their mark on the mat again this season.
Last season’s 4A Mat Classic state champ at 106 pounds, Kaess has moved up to 120 and sported a 17-2 record at press time. Marum notched third in the 106 division at last year’s state meet and amassed a 27-2 record at 113 at press time.
Marum took fourth at the recent Gut Check elite tournament in Kent and said that event was a good test for what’s to come down the line at state.
“You start winning, you see what you’re doing right and you see what you’re doing wrong,” he said. “(It’s) just good to win, it feels good ‘cause all your training comes to that match and you put everything in, you get everything out.”
Marum added that he’s solid on his feet and plans to work on his riding and top and bottom moves. When he’s not training with the Wildcats, Marum works out at his home gym and runs through some moves with his dad, who wrestled as a youth through college and got his son into the sport at age 4.
When Kaess’ mom grabbed a flier at a parade announcing a wrestling event, she asked her son if he wanted to give it a shot. It was when Kaess was in first or second grade, and the energetic kid soon hit the mat.
“When you win, it’s all on you. It’s you and another guy out there. If you lose, same thing, it’s on you,” Kaess said about what drives him on the wrestling scene.
Kaess noted this double leg and low shots have been working well this season. Along with Wildcat practice, there’s a CrossFit class he takes at Mount Si for seventh period, and then training at Fitness Quest in Auburn.
When Kaess’ Mat Classic championship was in the books, he came away from the experience with the following insight: “Stay focused, ‘cause other people, they want it just as much.”
The Record asked Kaess and Marum a series of questions to get a behind-the-scenes glimpse into their lives:
What’s your biggest pet peeve?
Kaess: In the practice room, when people come in my circle, where I’m drilling and stuff. They’re always coming and tumbling in. I don’t wanna break an ankle.
Marum: Wrestling related, people grabbing fingers and bigger people crowding into you when you are training.
What do you do outside of wrestling?
Kaess: I like cliff jumping and rock climbing and skiing.
Marum: Big into bridge jumping, cliff jumping. Huge into bass fishing and (will) start doing tournaments this summer, hopefully. Just hanging out with my friends and having fun.
What’s your dream vacation spot?
Kaess: I think going to Greenland or Iceland would be cool. It has cool scenery. I’d probably wanna go to the Alps and ski there.
Marum: Africa would be cool with all the animals, seeing some exotic or crazy animals that you can’t see anywhere around here. A place I haven’t been to, probably Alaska, I have family in Alaska on my mom’s side, so I’ll be going there soon. I’m excited for that.
What super power would you like to have?
Kaess: Super speed.
Marum: Super strength or to be able to fly.
What kind of music do you guys listen to?
Kaess: Rap or ’80s and ’70s R&B, rock and reggae.
Marum: Rap and country, just a little bit of everything.
If you could go to dinner with one person, who would that be?
Kaess: Jordan Burroughs (wrestler).
Marum: The Rock.
What’s your favorite restaurant in the area?
Kaess: Rio Bravo in North Bend.
Marum: The Little Si, their fettuccine is perfect.