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Phantom Call Proves Costly For CV Star

Rick Giampietri’s title opportunity, and perhaps Central Valley’s team championship as well, was squashed when referee Dan Jagla denied he penalized the CV wrestler’s foe a point for stalling.

CV coaches asserted he had given a second stalling signal and the scorers initially acknowledged it. A second stall by rule would have awarded Giampietri a point to tie the score at match’s end.

Film evidence, numerous eyewitnesses and even his opponent confirmed the referee’s action. But he said he made no such call and the Mat Classic VIII games committee, which resolves conflict in the tournament, would not overrule him.

“There’s nothing we can do about the outcome,” committee head official Gary Gehrmann said to CV assistant coach Rick Giampietri. “It’s a bad deal.”

Film is not admissable during an appeal.

Giampietri had rallied in the 158-pound semifinal and was riding out his opponent, Dan Staab of Bellarmine, thinking the stall call had tied the match.

The scoring tree indicated Giampietri was leading 7-6 when the match was over. Bedlam ensued when it was reversed.

Going into the finals, CV and Auburn were tied for the AAA state championship. Auburn had one finalist, the Bears none. Had Giampietri won, CV would have had a three-point lead.

“Everyone saw the (referee’s) hand come up. He says he didn’t give a stall point,” said CV coach Dale Ethridge. “It’s such a crime, an absolute crime. There has to be some source of recourse.”

There wasn’t, but there’s talk of using two referees in future semis.

Speaking of stalling

As reluctant as Giampietri’s match referee was to award a stall point, University’s Josh Knowles had a referee quick to penalize.

Leading his opening match 6-3 with seconds to go, Knowles raced to the center of the mat following a halt in action and adjusted the Velcro strap on his headgear prior to the restart.

The referee docked Knowles a point for stalling. The score wasn’t changed so, even though he was taken down, Knowles thought he had won. Instead the match was tied, he lost in overtime and ultimately was eliminated from the tournament.

A year ago Knowles placed fourth.

“That might have been one of the cheapest things I’ve seen,” said Titans coach Don Owen. “He felt Josh was delaying the match.”

Can’t a wrestler adjust headgear when it goes askew?

“Certainly,” said Owen. “When I asked the referee that, he refused to acknowledge me.”

Top coach

Deer Park’s Dean Largent was named the A/B Coach of the Year.

Largent has been at Deer Park for 22 years, the last 20 as head coach. In that time, the Stags have placed in the top 10 on 12 occasions with 13 individual champions and 48 placers.

Ray Westberg of Ellensburg was honored in Class AA and Kentwood’s Jack Henderson in Class AAA. Phil McLean of Gonzaga Prep was a Class AAA finalist.


Central Valley’s Shane Cunanan lost to state champion Cory Brannon of Gonzaga Prep in last year’s semifinals, not against this year’s semifinal foe, Jon Rugan of Mead.

Whats in a name?

Wrestlers named Studley, Bash and Beef all lost their opening matches at Mat Classic VIII and all but Pete Studley of Thomas Jefferson High went unplaced.

Studley was seventh in the AAA 115-pound class. University sophomore 101-pounder Gordon Bash won once in three matches. Pullman’s Beef Lyle was winless in two.

It might be noted, however, that Stevenson’s Farley Dudley was fairly studly making the A-B 108 finals.

Ditto for Otto

On a recruiting trip to Michigan, Everett’s Otto Olson could have indulged himself in a treat.

But he didn’t because he had one thing on his mind - becoming the first wrestler in seven years to win three straight Class AAA titles.

Saturday, he did just that, finishing the season with a 35-0 record and 25 pins at 168 pounds after winning previously at 148 and 158.

To celebrate, he indulged in a box full of Snickers bars he’d been collecting since Christmas.

, DataTimes