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Grizzlies take fourth at White River tournament

BUCKLEY - The Sunnyside High School wrestling team took fourth place honors in the 16-team White River wrestling tournament held this past Friday and Saturday.

The Grizzlies scored 121 points at the tourney. Enumclaw, the defending 3A State champions, won the tournament with a score of 228 points.

"We did pretty good, I was impressed," Sunnyside Coach George Paulus said. "This is traditionally a very strong tournament."

The Grizzlies fielded one champion at the tournament, Steven Romero, wrestling at 112 lbs.

Romero went 4-0 at the tournament, getting a first round bye before dismantling Josh Clayton from Yelm 21-6. After beating Enumclaw's Marcus Nichels 20-5 in the semi-finals, Romero beat Orting's Drew Templeman in a close match, 3-2.

"It was a takedown and an escape," Paulus said of the scoring. "It was a pretty good performance."

Two Grizzly wrestlers garnered second place finishes at the tournament.

Christian Reyes (103 lbs.) went 3-1 to grab second place.

After getting a first round bye Reyes beat Enumclaw's Travis Reano 15-10 and then beat Joah Fennell, from Woodinville, 7-5 to get into the final.

There he met Grandview's Santos Guillen. Reyes was up 6-5 to start the third period but gave up a reverse and Guillen was able to pull it out with a 7-6 win.

Josh Romero also placed second for Sunnyside with a 3-1 record.

He beat Orting's Justin Schulke by pin in 1:57 in the first round. He then pinned Auburn-Mt. View's Michael Reber in 5:45 to set up a semi-final match with Yelm's Caleb Thornhill. In that match Romero won 6-5, which put him into the finals against Jess Patrick of Yelm. Romero lost a 4-2 decision to him.

Rigo Valdez (119 lbs.) and Leroy Rodelo (145 lbs.) each took home third place honors for the Grizzlies. Nathan Gonzalez (103 lbs.) and Shawn Olivarez (140 lbs.) each placed fifth at the tournament for the Grizzlies.

"We're having a good time," Paulus said of the early wrestling season. "The competition was real good. I think we did pretty well for such a young team."

Sunnyside will start its dual meet season schedule this Tuesday, Dec. 9, when the Grizzlies travel to Wenatchee for a 6 p.m. match.

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