TACOMA — North Kitsap’s Holly Beaudoin made a little history at the Mat Classic XXXI, just not the kind she probably had in mind.
Beaudoin became the first Kitsap girl wrestler to reach the state finals three times, but unfortunately for the third straight year, she placed second, losing the last match 4-2 to Payton Stroud of White River.
The two wrestlers had met at sub-regionals two weeks ago, with Stroud coming out on top 7-6. However, Beaudoin had been in control heading into the final round of that match, giving her some confidence in the 120 finals under the bright lights of the Tacoma Dome.
“I had her on her back at subs and I was beating her 5-2 going into the third round and she threw it me,” Beaudoin said.
But things went awry early. Stroud scored two points within in the first ten seconds on a takedown, which put Beaudoin behind the eight ball. Wrestling while behind on the scoreboard is a tough position, but such a disadvantage is usually magnified in the state finals.
“If we don’t give up the two in the first 30 seconds, it’s a different match,” said North Kitsap head coach Robert Gomez.
Beaudoin was able to tie the match at 2 after twice escaping Stroud’s grasp, but Stroud scored another takedown late in the second round. Only towards the very end of the final period did Beaudoin seem to build some momentum, but she ran out of time.
“I’m upset because I want to win,” Beaudoin said after receiving her second place medal. “But it’s a learning experience.”
Beaudoin, a junior, has one more shot at a state championship, but her head coach believes she her mature attitude towards competing and her accomplishments have already made a big impact both on herself and the wrestling community.
“Most kids would have quit their second time doing that,” Gomez said. “She just keeping pushing and pushing. It’s making her into a great athlete.”
“She’s paving the way for other girls in our area to want to compete at this level,” he added.
In the 140 girls finals, Haley Michaelson of Bremerton lost a 12-1 decision to Krista Warren of Union. Although she had beaten Warren at the Kelso Invitational, Michaelson hurt her shoulder during her semifinal match against Makayla Raggow of Kelso and was noticeably uncomfortable during the final match.
“At the end of the day, I’m super proud of her,” said Bremerton girls coach Billy Richardson.
In all, 14 Kitsap wrestlers placed in the top eight at state this year. In addition to Beaudoin, North Kitsap received fourth place finishes from Elise Scrafford (girls, 135) and Nouh Hammou (2A, 195). Robert Gomez took fifth at 132 pounds.
“Everybody wants first, but that’s not the way the world works,” said the elder Gomez. “I feel like as long as we keep putting kids on the podium, we’re winning.”
Defending 4A champion South Kitsap had three placers this year. Xavier Eaglin pinned Jesus Flores of Eisenhower to take fifth at 126, and Ethan Fragoso pinned Sampson Mitchell of Decatur in 40 seconds to grab fifth at 220. Deyondre Davis was injured in the 160-pound fifth place match and took sixth.
Klahowya placed four wrestlers in the top eight in 1A: Kelton Gagnon (fourth, 106), Cameron Johnson (eighth, 106), Hayden Steele (fourth, 132) and Hunter Wallis (seventh, 170).
Bremerton added a second girls medalist when Catalina Sanchez reached the third place match, though she would finish fourth after losing to Marylinn Aueula of Curtis.
Olympic’s Anjelo Pangelinan was his school’s lone placer. He finished sixth after losing to Gavin Yates of R.A. Long 3-2 in the 2A 106 fifth place match.
4A 126 — Xavier Eaglin, South Kitsap, fifth.
4A 160 — Deyondre Davis, South Kitsap, sixth.
4A 220 — Ethan Fragoso, South Kitsap, fifth.
2A 106 — Anjelo Pangelinan, Olympic, sixth.
2A 132 — Robert Gomez, North Kitsap, fifth.
2A 195 — Nouh Hammou, North Kitsap, fourth.
1A 106 — Kelton Gagnon, Klahowya, fourth; Cameron Johnson, Klahowya, eighth.
1A 132 — Hayden Steele, Klahowya, fourth.
1A 170 — Hunter Wallis, Klahowya, seventh.
Girls 120 — Holly Beaudoin, North Kitsap, second.
Girls 135 — Elise Scrafford, North Kitsap, fourth.
Girls 140 — Haley Michaelson, Bremerton, second.
Girls 190 — Catalina Sanchez, Bremerton, fifth.