Jarod Maynes is mapping out his wrestling season.
The Central Valley junior placed third at last year’s Class 4A state high school tournament at 112 pounds and returns at that weight, where he’s currently ranked No. 2 in the state. With this weekend’s Inland Empire tournament and next week’s Tri-State tourney on his short-term horizon, he’s making plans for each stop along the road back to the Tacoma Dome and, this time, a date in the state finals.
“I’m working things out on MapQuest,” he insists.
Maynes has a secret weapon, you see. But since it’s not a secret weapon he can take with him, he needs to know where he can find it wherever he wrestles. To meet his needs, he’s building a database.
“I drink a mango smoothie before every match,” he laughs. “I have to make sure I can find one wherever we wrestle. Thank heaven for Jack-in-the-Box.”
Maynes’ craving for the frozen, tropical fruit delight was born at last year’s state tournament.
“I lost to Clint Powers from Heritage in the quarterfinals,” he said. “I knew I could beat him, but I didn’t get it done. When it came time to wrestle for third, I got a second chance at him. My family took me out to Jack-in-the-Box before the match and I had a mango smoothie. Then I went out and beat him to take third.
“Now I have one before every match.”
In other words, Maynes has charted a course to the state tournament, one blender at a time.
“We have some great tournaments coming up,” Maynes said. “The Inland Empire is going to be good. I just realized that Tri-State is next week, and Dream Duals this year is going to be incredible. Lake Stevens is going to be there and they’re a state power. Graham-Kapowsin is going to be there, too, and they’re a Class 4A power. And of course Moses Lake is going to be there – I’m excited for that tournament. It’s going to be a real test.”
A year ago, the then-sophomore 103/112 pounder made a habit out of placing third. He was third at Tri-State, third in several more tournaments, and most importantly, third at state.
This year, he’s looking to break through the semifinals and begin wrestling for championships. To make that leap, he’s got more secret weapons built into the Central Valley practice room, where first-year coach Doug Pecha maintains a relentlessly positive tone.
Three Bears, all in the lower weights, are ranked going into the season.
Sophomore Logan Ames, the Bears 103-pounder, enters the season ranked No. 7 in the state. Senior Trevor “T.J.” Delmedico is ranked No. 8 at 135.
“Logan’s brother, Tyler, is really tough too, he’s just not ranked yet,” Maynes said. “We’re really tough in the lower weights and we push each other hard every day. I’m always working with T.J. and I know that, if I can make a move work on him, I can make it work on anyone.”
A year ago Maynes was a 103-pounder through most of the season, but found it difficult to make that weight at the end of the season.
“I was stuck at about 111 pounds and finally, I just gave up and wrestled at 112,” he said. “I heard a Moses Lake coach say I wasn’t strong enough to make it at 112. I ended up wrestling both of their guys at that weight and I beat both of them.”
This year he’s planning to wrestle up more than he will at his destination weight.
“I’m going to wrestle 112 at state, but I think I’ll probably be wrestling at 119 most of the year, especially against tougher opponents,” he said. “I weigh in naturally at about 119 and I’m comfortable wrestling there. And wrestling against bigger, stronger opponents is only going to help me get better.”
Maynes has broad, knowledgeable support at home.
His father, Marc, was the first of five brothers to wrestle for Lakeland High School in Rathdrum, Idaho.
“My dad was the first, but my uncles were even better and won state championships,” Maynes said. “Especially my uncles Scott, Eric and Doug, but my uncle Chad wrestled, too.
“The funny thing is that I’m the only one in the next generation to wrestle. My brothers did track or baseball. But my whole family is into wrestling and they all come follow me.”
There is a family history of success at Tri-State, and the younger Maynes confessed that it can be intimidating to walk out onto the mats at North Idaho College for the annual wrestlefest.
“The first time I wrestled there it was very intimidating,” he said. “I had my whole family in the stands watching me and there’s the family history to live up to. I think now, though, I’ve learned how to put that behind me and just wrestle.
“Last year I placed third – that was the story of my season. I was always finishing third, even at state. This year I’m looking to do even better.”
Especially if the mango magic works.