Vikings take second at District wrestling meet

Perez, Marquez earn individual titles

ZILLAH - Things couldn't have gone much better for Mabton's wrestling team during the SCAC West District meet this past Saturday.

The Vikings, with 172 points, were second to only powerhouse Granger, in the field of seven teams.

More importantly, Mabton advanced eight wrestlers on to Regionals, along with three alternates.

"We ended up pretty much right where I though we should be," said Coach John Kilian.

Eli Perez claimed one of two individual titles for Mabton, winning the championship at 189 lbs. with an 8-4 victory over Cle Elum's Matt McKenzie. "Eli went after it, he was really offensive minded," said Kilian. "I'm very proud of the job he did."

The other Viking to earn a championship was Robert Marquez in the 215-lb. weight division, dispatching Cle Elum's Cody Vandeventer with a pin in the finals.

Taking second for Mabton were Luis Aviles at 112 lbs. and Andy Torres at 119 lbs.

Aviles was tied 8-8 after two rounds in the championship final, before losing by a pin to Granger's Sammy Salcedo with 54 seconds left in the match.

Torres was also close in his final, trailing just 6-4 before getting pinned by Josh Russell of Granger.

Eric Meza was third for Mabton at 102 lbs., pinning Tasha Esparza of Granger.

Also taking third was Vicente Tovar in the 152-lb. weight division with a 10-8 victory over Zillah's Jonathan Martinez.

At 160 lbs., the Vikings' Cesar Macedo edged Jared Witt of Goldendale by a 4-2 margin for third-place.

Adrian Magana claimed Mabton's lone fourth-place finish, with a consolation finals loss to White Swan's Jacob England, 5-2, in the 171-lb. weight division.

Besides the eight wrestlers who placed in the top four, Mabton will send Andy Rivera (125), Damien Marquez (189) and Arturo Nunez (119) to Regionals as alternates in their respective weight divisions.

"We did well," Kilian said of his team's effort at Districts. "Now we get to run up against the buzzsaw (Regionals at Royal) with the likes of Royal and Warden."

He added, "We need to get tough this week or we go home."


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