By CRAIG GIAMMONA
Courtesy Daily Sitka Sentinel
The Mt. Edgecumbe Braves got the better of their crosstown rivals from Sitka High during two recent wrestling events.
On Oct. 20, the Braves beat Sitka High 63-12 in a dual at B.J. McGillis Gymnasium. The match started with four forfeits by the Wolves, and Paul Johanson and Jaylin Prince capped off the evening with back-to-back pins for the Braves.
On. 24, the Braves won seven of the 13 bouts in a mix-and-match event at Sitka High. All seven of the Edgecumbe wins came by pin.
"I’ve never had a team that’s been so good at pinning,” MEHS coach Mike Kimber said. “This is a pretty aggressive group of kids. They’re trying to do their best. They know how important a pin is and they like it. For them, it’s kind of a badge of honor.”
Prince (Kotlik) and Johanson (Hoonah) both had pins for MEHS during the Oct. 24 match, as did Shyler Johnson (Unalakleet), Carl Crockett (Brevig Mission), Nathan Brown (Barrow), Carl Andrew (Napakiak) and Cody Sherman.
Sherman, a varsity basketball player from Nome who is in his senior year at MEHS, was wrestling in his first match. Sherman beat SItka's Jaren Johnson, a freshman.
The match on Oct. 20 was a true dual, which began at 106 pounds and went straight through to 285. With a large crowd of Edgecumbe students on hand at B.J. McGillis Gymnasium, the Braves took advantage of six Sitka forfeits and won five of the eight contested matches, including four by pin, to score a 63-15 win.
Wrestling started at 132, after Sitka had forfeited the evening's first four matches. Deirdre Creed (106, Kotzebue), Melissa Fisher (113, Hoonah), Robert Nielsen (120, Anchorage) and Kittipath Prasartkaew (126, Dillingham) accepted forfeits for the Braves, with Daniel Villasenor facing Jaren Sumauang in the 132-pound bout. Sumauang was up 3-2 after the first period, but Villasenor (Anchorage) took control in the second and secured the pin with just three seconds to go in the frame. After Sitka Will Patrick beat George Brown (Barrow) at 138, Franklin Hoogendorn, a Koyuk freshman, came back to beat John Davis. Hoogendorn trailed 5-2 after the first period, but won 9-7 in overtime.
At 152, Jacob Licari beat Shawn Andrews (St. Michael) 11-8 and Mitchell Boord topped Crockett 10-4 at 160. Crockett had rallied to take a 6-4 lead in the third period when the match official determined that Boord should have been allowed to start the third period on the mat. The period was started over, with Boord up 4-3, and the Sitka wrestler took advantage of his second chance.
Kendrick Hautala, a senior from Kwethluk, got the Braves back on track with a pin at 170 pounds. After Chris Journey (St. Mary's) and Gusty Akelkok (Dillingham) took forfeits at 182 and 195, Johanson and Prince finished things off with a pair of pins.