Trojans build on last year’s second-place finish.


Sports editor

BREMERTON — After coming incredibly close to a league title a year ago, the Olympic Trojans made good.

Olympic scored 330.5 points to easily lead the pack at the 3A Olympic League Sub-Regional Tournament as Port Angeles was second with 281.5, Peninsula third with 269 and Bremerton fourth with 242. In addition, the Trojans send 12 on to this weekend’s West Central District III Regional Tournament in Yelm.

“The team wrestled well,” coach Tim Aiken said. “It’s good to have 12 in the finals. That’s a big jump in team points.”

The Trojans had 11 grapplers in finals matches, with seven winning Oly League titles.

“I challenged the team today,” Aiken said. “We wanted the guys to win the team title this year. They rose to the challenge. Now, we challenged them to go out and win the regional tournament.”

Camie Yeik started the finals run at 103-pounds, topping Peninsula’s Stephen Lacheney 8-5. At 130, Branden Yeik won by injury default, while Ivan Gaeta pinned Peninsula’s Daniel McPherson in just 39 seconds to win 160. Shane Galeski beat fellow Trojan teammate Luke O’Halek 11-7 in the 171 final, while David Reynolds won the 215 title with a 1:19 pin of Port Angeles’ Sam Adams.

But the biggest highlight was the second match in as many weeks between 112ers Jesse Borcherding of Olympic and Bremerton’s Billy Richardson.

While Richardson won the Battle of the Bay meeting between the two, it was Borcherding extracting revenge with a 5-3 decision that easily could have gone into overtime.

“It’s gonna be that tight probably all the way through,” Aiken said of their rivalry. “We’re gonna have to get used to it. The competition is there.”

Borcherding took the first takedown at 1:12 in the first, ending the first round with that 2-0 lead. An escape 30 seconds into the second round made it 3-0 before Borcherding scored another takedown with just 4 seconds before the end of the second, making it 5-0.

With just one minute remaining in the third, Richardson went to work, scoring an escape and then getting a two-point takedown. Richardson was close to getting two near-fall points that would have tied the match, but the official said control was wavering, signaling two one-second counts rather than what initially appeared to be a two-second count.

Another top match was the return of Trojan 145er Billy Neary to the mats. While he rejoined the team several weeks ago, Neary stepped back on the mats for the first time at the tourney, recording pins in each round, including a 2:29 pin of Spencer Baebler of Peninsula to win the 145 crown.

“That’s the way Billy’s wrestled for six years,” Aiken said. “He goes out there gung-ho to go after that pin. He’s hard to beat when he’s on top of his game.”

Mike D’Astoli was second at 285, as was Josh Melencio at 135 and Lucas Kogut at 140.

Trojan 119er Brandon Truini had to forfeit his title rematch with Bremerton’s Jordan Hernandez-Jones due to a nagging tailbone injury he suffered the previous week in practice. Aiken said it shouldn’t prevent Truini from competing at regionals this weekend.

“He’ll be able to go,” Aiken said. “It’s one of those nagging things.”

Also advancing is Matt Hoyt at 135 after he took third place with a 3:36 pin of Peninsula’s Nick Bertsch. Curtis Reeve (125) just missed the cut with a fourth-place finish and will be an alternate.


The Eagles advanced nine into Friday’s regionals at Tacoma’s Washington High School after taking second place at the 2A Olympic League Sub-Regional Tournament at North Mason last weekend.

North Mason won the team title, just edging the Eagles 256-249.5.

Three Eagles won league titles, headed by Karl Neumann at 145 who defeated Bulldog Jesse McQuillan 11-3. Joe Sawyers won 140 with an 8-4 win against Sequim’s Anthony Drabek and Kevin Schiffman got the win at 119 with a narrow 7-6 win against Kingston’s Willis Castle.

Ammon Jensen (125), Neil Sell (135) and Danny Zimny (152) all took second place, while Stephen Hays (145), Donnie McCarthy (171) and Brett Harkness (215) all took third place to advance. Pete Amador (103), John Hays (130), Nehemiah Salo (135) and Caleb Hiller (171) all finished fourth and will be alternates.