FRIDAY-SATURDAY, TACOMA DOME
2016 team champions: 4A — Lake Stevens. 3A — Arlington. 2A — Toppenish. 1A — Deer Park. 2B/1B — Warden. Girls — Grandview.
Returning local champions: 4A — Jake Treece, Enumclaw, sr. (132, won at 132 last year), Josh Franich, Puyallup, sr. (138, won at 132 last year). 3A – Brandon Kaylor, Bonney Lake, jr. (113, won at 106 last year). 2A – Alex Cruz, Orting, jr. (126, won at 113 last year), Ben Gore, Orting, sr. (152, won at 145 last year). 1A – Adrian St. Germain, Vashon, so. (152, won at 145 last year). Girls – Jasmine Parker-Borrero, Wilson, jr. (145, won at 140 last year).
Schedule: Friday — Session 1, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. (first-round matches); Session 2, 3:30 p.m.-9:30 p.m. (quarterfinal and consolation matches). Saturday — Session 3, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. (semifinal and consolation matches); Session 4 — 2 p.m.-8 p.m. (all medal matches, including championships).
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Tickets: Daily passes are $17 for adults, $13 for students and senior citizens. Tournament passes are $25 for adults, $19 for students and senior citizens.
4A boys: Tahoma’s season-long health concerns? They were put to rest at regionals last weekend when the Bears advanced 16 wrestlers to the state championships. That makes the 2012 state champions the team to beat this weekend, especially with Nick Whitehead (132), Kione Gill (195) and Colorado transfer Jordan Martinez (126) gunning for their first Mat Classic crowns. Curtis will be right on the Bears’ heels, bringing 13 participants to Tacoma. And the Vikings can match Tahoma’s frontline firepower, too, with Aizayah Yacapin (106), Ryan Wheeler (113) and Alex Stuart (170). The last time the 4A chase came down to a pair of SPSL/NPSL schools was 1990 (Kentwood beat Auburn for the title).
3A: How well have 3A SPSL/3A PCL schools fared at the state tournament? Before last year, a program from those leagues has finished first or second in eight consecutive seasons, winning five times. Bonney Lake is the latest to stake its claim as the team to beat. The Panthers are bringing 10 wrestlers, including Kaylor, a two-time defending state champion, to try to capture their first team title in school history. Kelso has a state-best 17 wrestlers in the tournament but cannot match Bonney Lake’s elite capability.
2A/1A: This is about as close as it gets on paper. Defending state champion Toppenish and reigning 2A runner-up Orting should duke it out again this year. The Wildcats have 10 state participants; the Cardinals are bringing 13, including both Cruz and Gore, two-time state champions. And do not forget about Evergreen Conference champion W.F. West, which has 10 wrestlers at Mat Classic. The championship could very well be decided at 285, where all three schools have state contenders — Toppenish’s Jonathan Cuevas, Orting’s Kenny Marll and W.F. West’s Hunter Arredondo. … Granger is the heavy favorite to capture its first 1A crown since 2013, bringing in 13 participants, including nine regional champs. … Reardan is the 2B/1B favorite with 13 wrestlers in the field, including six regional champions. The Indians were the 2016 state runner-up to Warden.
Girls: If there was a time when a local school broke through to win the team title, now is it. Federal Way has been ranked No. 1 all season under coach Travis Mango, and the Eagles are coming off a regional title at Decatur High School, led by Stanford-bound softball player Tally Thomas. They are trying to end Grandview’s two-year run as state champion.
Todd Milles: firstname.lastname@example.org