The Kenai Central wrestling team came back from a 22-6 deficit to defeat Soldotna in a dual meet on Thursday at Kenai Central High School.
Just last Saturday, Soldotna had finished second at the Skyview Invitational a dual meet tournament while Kenai had finished seventh.
Soldotna co-coach Bill Carlson said Kenai’s victory on Thursday shows just how much the Kardinals are progressing.
“They’ve come a long way this season,” Carlson said of the Kardinals.
Kenai coach David Boyle said defeating the Stars is good for the team’s momentum.
“We turned the corner a little bit,” Boyle said. “I felt there were times we could have wrestled harder earlier in the season. Tonight, we wrestled hard to a man.”
The Stars were hurt by some missing varsity wrestlers. Erick Morris, Jesse Carlson and Chase Jenson all were not in the lineup. Kenai also picked up three forfeits from the Stars.
The absence of Morris gave Jared Oleson a chance to step into the lineup at 152. Oleson started the dual meet with a pin of Kenai’s Greg Aho.
“For him to step up and get a win was the biggest highlight for us,” Carlson said.
Kenai came back with a Jaron Dambacher pin at 160, but Soldotna then ripped off 16 straight points to take a 22-6 lead. The points came from a pin by Ethan Waters at 189 and victories by Mathew Streiby at 215, Les Baker at 275 and David Japhet at 171. Baker defeated Kenai’s Mitchell Canavan 4-2.
“It’s nice to see Mitchell Canavan improving match by match,” Boyle said.
The Kardinals then scored the next 27 points of the meet to take a 33-22 lead. Quintun Pribbenow got a pin at 103, Kenai received three straight forfeits, then Freddie John defeated Delbert Leavitt at 130.
Soldotna’s Ryan Hanley made the score 33-25 with a 6-0 decision over Aaron Agosti at 135, but Kenai then scored two straight pins to ice the meet. Cody Booth notched a pin at 140, then Devin Boyle picked up a pin at 145.
Kardinals 45, Stars 25
152 Jared Oleson, Sol, p. Greg Aho, 3:39; 160 Jaron Dambacher, Ken, p. Kraig Morris, 1:59; 171 David Japhet, Sol, dec. Kevin Krause, 6-3; 189 Ethan Waters, Sol, p. Ty Smith, 3:02; 215 Mathew Strieby, Sol, dec. Michael Dormady, 7-5; 275 Les Baker, Sol, dec. Mitchell Canavan, 4-2; 103 Quintun Pribbenow, Ken, p. Meg Pruitt, 5:42; 112 Joey Aho, Ken, won by forfeit; 119 Chris Osbekoff, Ken, won by forfeit; 125 John Hughes, Ken, won by forfeit; 130 Freddie John, Ken, dec. Delbert Leavitt, 7-0; 135 Ryan Hanley, Sol, dec. Aaron Agosti, 6-0; 140 Cody Booth, Ken, p. Steven Burlison, 1:31; 145 Devin Boyle, Ken, p. Justice Elson, 3:39.
152 Justice Elson, Sol, p. Douglas Duniphin, 1:32; 160 Donny Dormady, Ken, p. Jeremy Dooley, 3:34; 160 Wes Quade, Ken, dec. Jesse Faulkner, 16-9; 215 Jose Gomez, Sol, p. Douglas Nelson, 3:15; 275 Nathan Streiby, Sol, p. Steele Mahan, Ken, 4:46.
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