EAST WENATCHEE - The Sunnyside Grizzly wrestling team returned from winter break as strong as ever, winning the first five matches last night on the way to a 57-12 rout of Eastmont.
Sunnyside (3-0) won all but three of Thursday night's 14 matches in the Eastmont gym.
The Columbia Basin-Big Nine match opened with Isaac Guerrero (130 lbs.) scoring a second round pin for the Grizzlies over Eastmont's Jaime Hernandez.
After Isidro Ramirez (135 lbs.) received a forfeit for Sunnyside, teammate Emmanuel Tejeda (140 lbs.) recorded a 17-5 romp over the Wildcats' Camden Wheathercroft. Sunnyside's David Vidales (145 lbs.) continued the fast Grizzly start with a second round pin of Mason Jones. The fifth Grizzly win to open the match was Josh Romero's 21-5 technical fall victory over Gabe Cates in the 152-lb. match.
At that point, Sunnyside had already opened a 27-0 whitewashing of Eastmont, but the Wildcats got on the board with consecutive victories. Joey Caron (160 lbs.) earned the first Eastmont victory with an 8-4 decision over Sunnyside's Jaime Garcia. That was followed by a narrow 7-5 win for the Wildcats by Darren Hargrove (171 lbs.) over Lupe Mendoza.
After that it was pretty much all Sunnyside, with Eastmont only finding the win column once more.
Adrian Ramirez (189 lbs.) got the Grizzlies back on the winning track with a narrow 9-7 win over Sam Gwinn. Franki Ochoa (215 lbs.) continued the momentum by defeating Eastmont's Johnny Martinez 5-3.
After Sunnyside's Adam Peters (285 lbs.) recorded a first round pin over Cristian Baker, Eastmont collected its third and final victory when Fabian Wickham (103 lbs.) pinned Sunnyside's Jesse Barajas in the first round.
Santos Guerrero (112 lbs.) returned the Grizzlies to their winning ways with a second round pin over Juan Cervantes.
The match ended with Nathan Gonzalez (119 lbs.) of Sunnyside pinning Cristma Hernandez in the second round and Grizzly Daniel Guillen (125 lbs.) getting the best of Eastmont's Michael Preston with a second round pin.
"I think we did pretty good, they had about five places where we thought they would be tough," said Sunnyside Coach George Paulus, noting he didn't expect a close match going into the competition.
The coach's only disappointment on the night was Barajas' first round pin. "That match should have gone to a decision," he said. "But we all make mistakes and try to learn from them and move on."
The Sunnyside JV wrestling squad will be in action tomorrow, Saturday, hosting about 200 wrestlers for an event in the SHS gym. Paulus said the varsity wrestlers will take care of the timing and score keeping at the tourney.
The Grizzly varsity returns to action next Thursday when it hosts Kamiakin.