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MAT CLASSIC: TJ's Williams claims 195-pound state championship | Slideshow
The championship round wasn’t the best for the Federal Way school district wrestlers Saturday night at the Mat Classic state wrestling championships.
That was before Thomas Jefferson senior K.W. Williams stepped onto the mat inside an electric Tacoma Dome after two wrestlers from Todd Beamer and two from Decatur had all lost in their respective title matches.
Williams was looking to avenge his only loss of the season to Curtis senior Kadyn Del Toro in the 195-pound championship. But that wasn’t the only thing running through Williams’ head Saturday night. He was also hoping to avenge a loss in the same state championship match a season ago at the 2011 Mat Classic.
It was a feeling Williams didn’t want to experience two years in a row.
“I didn’t want to go out the same way,” Williams said.
And he wouldn’t. Williams hoisted the Class 4A 195-pound state championship by beating the only wrestler who had beaten him during his senior season. Williams dominated Del Toro on the way to a 7-4 win in the state title match.
“I was afraid that it might happen again,” Williams said about losing in the championship. “I just came out working. I watched him earlier and it seemed like he got tired easily. After the first round I saw him wheezing and I knew I just had to keep working and I was going to get it.”
Williams took a quick 2-0 lead with a first-round takedown, but Del Toro put together three points on escapes to take a 3-2 lead early in the third and final round. But it was all Williams from there. He took the lead for good with a takedown with 41 seconds remaining in the match and added another take down with 6 seconds remaining to guarantee the Raiders and head coach Jess Workman a state title for the third straight season.
“I have been wrestling since I was 6 years old and there is no feeling like this,” Williams said. “This is what I’ve worked for all these years.”
The state wrestling championship continues an amazing senior year for Williams. The student body president at TJ led the Raider football team to its first-ever postseason appearance during the fall at quarterback.
He became only the third player in SPSL history to pass and run for over 1,000 yards. He accounted for 26 touchdowns and led the SPSL in rushing with over 1,200 yards. Williams inked a national letter of intent earlier this month to play football in the fall at Idaho State University.
He is also set to play outfield for the TJ baseball team next month. He was an all-league player a season ago for the Raiders.
“I think it’s extra fulfilling because I was never blessed with as many gifts as he has,” said Williams’ father, Joe, who wrestled in high school. “God gave him some special gifts.”
Williams earned the berth in the final by pinning Roosevelt’s Garrett Mack in his opener Friday. He then outpointed Union’s Bryson Page in the quarterfinals, 14-4. Saturday morning, Williams won a 6-4 decision over Snohomish’s Nathan Proffit in the semifinals.
The Decatur duo of Nick Karis and Rowland Gaydosh dropped back-to-back title matches Saturday night in the Class 3A division. Beamer’s Arian Carpio lost her first match of the season in the 106-pound girls championship, and Titan 138-pounder Deshar House lost in his final high school wrestling match.
Plain and simple, Gaydosh got caught by Kamiakin’s Sisto Santana Pina in the 170-pound Class 3A championship match Saturday night. The two were wrestling a back-and-forth match during the opening two rounds.
It looked like Gaydosh tallied the first points of the match in the latter part of the first round when he took Pina down, but the referee ruled it was out of bounds.
But with 1:04 remaining in the second round, Pina pushed Gaydosh off balance and immediately rolled him onto his back. After a few seconds of fight from Gaydosh, the referee slapped the mat for a Pina pin. The loss ended Gaydosh’s junior season at 34-4. He pinned Hanford’s Joe Traverso in his opener, beat Everett’s Connor Boyce in the quarterfinals, 9-8, and won another one-pointer over Southridge’s Kevin Del-Angel.
The Pina pin came minutes after Gaydosh’s teammate and training partner, Karis, lost a heart-breaker in the 160-pound final to Mercer Island’s Blake Johnson. Johnson, who is headed to Oregon State University in the fall, won a 5-3 decision over the Decatur junior.
After wrestling to a scoreless first round, Karis tallied the first point of the match on an escape with 53 seconds left in the second round. But Johnson came right back with a two-point takedown to go up 2-1. Karis, however, answered back with a one-point reversal to tie the match up again heading into the third round.
With 1:37 left in the match, Johnson tallied a single-point before taking Karis down later in the round to take a commanding 5-2 lead. Karis’ final point came after Johnson was stalling. Karis finished the year with a 35-7 record after finishing sixth as a sophomore at the Mat Classic.
Karis pinned Jose Ramirez in his opener and beat Liberty’s Hamilton Noel in the quarterfinals, 11-4. He then beat Southridge’s Connor Rosane in the semifinals, 8-4.
The storybook ending didn’t happen for Carpio. The Todd Beamer freshman lost her first and only match of the season Saturday night in the 106-pound girls state championship match under the bright Tacoma Dome lights.
Winlock junior Rachel Archer used a takedown with just 7 seconds left in the third and final round to break a 2-2 deadlock and win the match, 4-2. The loss dropped Carpio to 39-1 on the season.
Acher, who snagged her second state title, tallied the first points of the match midway through the first round with a takedown of Carpio with 1:12 remaining in the round. But Carpio got on the scoreboard when she reversed an Archer lock to cut the lead to 2-1 with 7.5 seconds remaining in the opening round. The second round was a back-and-forth affair with both wrestlers almost tallying points.
After another 2:30 of impressive back-and-forth wrestling in the third and final round, Carpio tied the match at 2-2 with one escape point, but Archer took home the gold medal at 106 pounds with the two-point takedown of Carpio with the clock running down.
The points came after Carpio attempted a single-leg shot that was thwarted by dasrd with 15 seconds left.
Carpio, who won the USA National Championship in the spring, rolled into the championship final in impressive fashion. Carpio pinned her first two opponents Friday in a grand total of 5:06, before winning a hard-fought 6-2 decision over Newport’s Julie Norvell in the semifinal.
There wasn’t much that House and his opponent in the Class 4A 138-pound final, Graham-Kapowsin’s Ian Steen, didn’t know about each other. The two wrestled each other four times during the season and competed in the same division of the South Puget Sound League. House’s only win over Steen clinched Beamer an unbeaten season and the SPSL South Division championship during its dual meet with Graham-Kapowsin.
But it wasn’t meant to be Saturday inside the Tacoma Dome. Steen caught House in a head-and-arm hold and pinned him with 25.5 seconds left in the second round to claim the 138-pound state title.
House jumped out quick with a take down with 30 seconds remaining in the opening round. But Steen tied the match on a reversal later in the round. House went up 3-2 on an escape early in the second before getting caught with the head-and-arm.
House won three-straight decisions to earn the berth into the championship, including an impressive 11-2 win over Mead’s David Munding in the semifinals.
In other action from the Mat Classic:
• Beamer’s Ares Carpio ended his impressive wrestling career Saturday with a fourth-place medal at the Mat Classic. The 2010 individual state champion lost to Lake Steven’s Eric Soler in the semifinals Saturday morning, 6-5, ending his chance to be a two-time champ. Soler eventually won the 126-pound state title.
Carpio, who will wrestle at Arizona State University next fall, won his first two matches Friday and also got a 19-second pin over Marysville-Pilchuck’s Killian Page in his first loser’s bracket match. Carpio then lost in the third/fourth match, 10-2.
• Federal Way senior Jessy Leifi finished in fourth place at 285 pounds in his first trip to the Mat Classic. Leifi advanced into the semifinals with a pin of Ferris’ Drew Sharkey in the quarterfinals. But Central Kitsap’s Kyle Lanoue beat Leifi to drop him into the loser’s bracket.
Leifi then pinned Issaquah’s Jonathan Norriss before losing in the third/fourth match Saturday.
• Decatur sophomore 106-pounder Trysten Dawson finished 1-2 in Tacoma. Dawson beat Kennedy’s Kendall Moman in the loser’s bracket, pinning him in just 34 seconds.
• Decatur senior Nick Lindholm advanced into the state semifinals with two-straight impressive wins Friday. But the 126-pounder ended up finishing sixth after losing both of his matches Saturday.
Lindholm, who won the regional championship, beat Bellevue’s Andy Ewing in his opener by technical fall and won a 9-4 decision over Sunnyside’s Nathan Gonzalez in the quarterfinals. Lindholm eventually lost to Shadle Park’s Caleb Burger in the semis, 7-5.
• Federal Way junior Kim Mored finished 0-2 in her first trip to the Mat Classic Friday. The 100-pounder was pinned in both her matches.
• Federal Way senior Victoria Pena ended up finishing in seventh place at 112 pounds. Pena dropped her opening-round match, but won two-straight loser’s bracket matches to get onto the podium. Pena pinned Kingston’s Lyndsey Barnhill in the seventh/eighth match in just 1:41.
• Federal Way's Bianca Arizpe ended her junior season with a fifth-place medal in the 112-pound weight class. Arizpe, who entered the tournament as the top-ranked girls wrestler at 112, lost to eventual finalist Kyra Batara in the quarterfinals, 5-1.
After going 2-1 in the loser’s bracket, Arizpe beat Ingraham’s Yubo Wakayo in the fifth/sixth match Saturday, 11-3.
• Federal Way senior Axa Molina ended her wrestling career with a sixth-place finish at 118 pounds. Molina advanced into the semifinals with a pair of wins Friday. But she was beaten by Burlington-Edison’s Taylor Graham, 6-4, in overtime, dropping her into the loser’s bracket. Molina lost her next two matches in the loser’s bracket, including another overtime loss in the fifth/sixth match.
• Todd Beamer sophomore Brett Dykman snared fourth place in the Class 4A 113-pound bracket after finishing the tournament with a 4-2 record. Dykman won his opener before losing the quarterfinals to eventual state champion Michael Nguyen from Evergreen. Dykman then won three-straight loser’s bracket matches before losing in the third/fourth match.
• Jefferson senior Michael Roybal finished 1-2 at 113 pounds. Roybal lost his opener to Beamer’s Brett Dykman before beating Bethel’s Aaron Chapa in the loser’s bracket.
• Todd Beamer freshman Jordan Rhodes finished 1-2 in his first trip to state. Rhodes won his opener against Eisenhower’s Cameron Manjarrez, 12-7, before losing two straight.
• Beamer sophomore Brian Dykman was 1-2 Friday at Mat Classic. The 120-pounder lost in his opener, before beating South Kitsap’s Joel Sherman in his first loser’s bracket match.
• Beamer’s Aron Set-Heit finished 1-2 in the 138-pound bracket. Set-Heit won his opening-round match over Walla Walla’s Anthony Stalder, 11-1, before losing two straight.
• Federal Way’s Luaipou Lologo finished in eighth place in the girls 145-pound bracket after finishing 2-3 at the Mat Classic. Lologo won her opener before losing in the quarterfinals. She then split a pair of loser’s bracket matches before losing in the seventh/eighth match.
• Beamer freshman Vanessa Dixon finished her inaugural trip to the Mat Classic with a third-place medal in the girls 138-pound bracket. After losing in the quarterfinals, Dixon won four-straight matches in the loser’s bracket to claim third.
Dixon downed Nooksack Valley’s Chloe Garder in the third/fourth match, 8-0.
• Beamer freshman K.J. Skannal finished 1-2 in his first trip to the Mat Classic. The 195-pounder lost his opening match before beating Walla Walla’s Luis Santana in the loser’s bracket by pin.
• Beamer junior Lance Gibson finished 1-2 in the 152-pound division. Gibson won his opener over South Kitsap’s Bryce Broome, 9-4, before losing two straight.
• Decatur junior Spencer Smith finished seventh in the Class 3A 183-pound bracket. Smith ended up 3-3 in the tournament. He lost his opener before winning two in the loser’s bracket. He pinned Timberline’s Tyler Saichompoo in the seventh/eighth match.
• Decatur sophomore Brandon Zimmerman finished 1-2 in his first trip to the Mat Classic at 145 pounds. Zimmerman’s lone win came over Bainbridge Island’s Alex Hoover.