Philomath High’s Blaise Pindell continued an exceptional start to his senior season with a notable 8-4 win Wednesday over Cascade senior Lance VanHoose. The 182-pound match pitted two state champions from last season’s showcase tournament.
Facing off in a Special District 2 Duals meet at Elmira, Pindell wrestled up from his usual 170 to be able to face VanHoose. Pindell’s record now stands at 20-0 on the season.
VanHoose placed second as a freshman and fourth as a sophomore at state when he was attending Scio. He transferred to Cascade before his junior season. Pindell placed fourth as a sophomore.
From a team perspective, the Warriors got in two duals — a 45-33 loss to Cascade and a 42-24 victory over Elmira.
Besides the Pindell victory, other Philomath on-the-mat wins against the Cougars were recorded by Ben Hernandez and David Griffith. Wrestling at 120, Hernandez took care of Jason Hoffman with a pin in just 33 seconds. Griffith, competing at 160, pinned Cash Butler in 54 seconds.
The Warriors lost three of five matches against Elmira but ended up with the team win because of several points off forfeits. Senior Blake Niemann, wrestling at 126, took 54 seconds to pin Elmira’s Noah Sawyer. At 138, sophomore Gradin Fairbanks pinned Wayde Walton in 5:15.
Philomath’s girls wrestled a couple of matches in Elmira. Junior Taylor Mussati and sophomore Ellie Morton both defeated Siuslaw’s Chris Hoover — Mussati with a pin in 1:02 and Morton with a pin in 53 seconds.
Philomath’s next action will be Friday at the Mid-Valley Classic/Tod Surman meet in Albany.
Special District 2 Duals
Wednesday, Jan. 26, at Elmira HS