A shock wave rumbled through the Mead gymnasium in the form of diminutive University 132-pounder Brandon Clark.
Wrestling first in the first-place showdown between the Greater Spokane League unbeaten wrestling teams Wednesday, his throw came out of nowhere for a pin midway through the first period, setting the tone for the Titans’ surprisingly easy 28-20 triumph.
“That was a really big match for us,” coach Don Owen said. “Whenever you start a dual meet, it’s probably one of the most critical matches.”
Clark gave away considerable size to returning District 4A champion Max Peterson, who got an easy takedown to open the match. But the Titans junior said he knew he had stronger hips, caught Peterson as he stood up and pancaked him.
“I was just waiting to see what he could do,” Clark said, “and when I could see he got in a high position I knew I had more hip leverage than he did. He tried a throw and I did a re-throw on him.”
Owen bumped State 3A runner-up Austin Stannard, ostensibly a 170-pounder, up to 195 pounds and he got U-Hi (5-0) a second-period pin, the last of four successive Titan victories that built a 22-10 lead.
“We had gotten pinned by Kevin McLean (before) and I just felt it was a good thing to have an experienced senior there who was far less likely to be thrown,” Owen said.
The pieces fit in nicely in the weights below, with Jacob Soto taking Stannard’s place at 170 and winning 7-5.
After building the 12-point lead, Owen had four of his better wrestlers in the final five weights, getting two pins for a total of four during the match. And he had the luxury of wrestling returning state second placer Cam Sorenson in the night’s final match.
Even in their six losses, he pointed out that nary a Titan wrestler was pinned.
Shadle Park 44, Gonzaga Prep 34: Technical falls by Ryan Farrell (120) and Kemoni Robinson (132) helped the visiting Highlanders (2-3) hold off the Bullpups (0-5). G-Prep won seven consecutive matches, including pins by Kooper Hval (170), Jacob Thies (195) and Cole Sebert (285).
North Central 42, Ferris 31: Jacob Koczor received a third-period penalty point to edge Michael Nutt 2-1 at 285 pounds and the visiting Indians (3-2) took seven of the first nine matches to beat the Saxons (1-4).
Mt. Spokane 58, Lewis and Clark 20: The visiting Wildcats (4-1) posted seven pins, including first-round pins by Alec Hoover (120) and Andrew Hoover (126), to take the win. Tyler Taylor of the Tigers (2-3) defeated Jacob Sander 17-6 at 170.
Central Valley 57, Rogers 9: The host Bears (4-1) had six pins, including consecutive first-round pins by Matt Naccarato (220), Zack Millard (285) and Christian Hill (106), to defeat the Pirates (0-5).
Deer Park 44, Cheney 30: Cody Devour (220) earned a second-round pin and Seth Hoog (113) recorded a 27-second pin as the host Stags totaled five pins while defeating the Blackhawks.
East Valley 52, West Valley 18: The visiting Knights took advantage of five pins, including Brenten Goodwater’s 49-second pin of Tate Malek at 126, to turn back the Eagles.
Colville 83, Pullman 0: The host Indians piled up points with seven pins and five forfeit wins to defeat the Greyhounds. Austin Donough (126) had a 13-second pin and Alex Linn (120) added a pin in 1:28.