TACOMA – Ben Voightleander had lost a couple of matches to Moses Lakes’ Beau Mauseth, so the Mead High School sophomore tried new tactics when the pair of 182-pound wrestlers met in the quarterfinals of Mat Classic XXX on Friday at the Tacoma Dome.
“I told him grind it out grind it out and win it late,” Panthers coach Phil McLean said.
Voightleander did just that, taking Mauseth down with 2 seconds left in the third round to break a 4-all tie and move on to Saturday’s semifinals with a 6-4 decision.
“I didn’t mean that late,” McLean joked. “But that was our game plan and he did a great job.”
Voightleander had beaten Auburn-Riverside’s Sam Onichchenko by an identical 6-4 score in his morning opening-round match and felt good entering his quarterfinal bout with Mauseth despite the previous losses.
“My mindset was a little bit different,” Voightleander said. “I was more aggressive with my offense. He’s a great wrestler, the dude’s a hammer. He kept on going, but I was able to go a little bit harder. I knew I had to keep the pressure on, get in his grill, and eventually it was going to come.”
Voightleander and three of his teammates reached the semis and Mead stood in third place after the first day of the 4A meet. The Panthers had 52.5 points, trailing leader South Kitsap, which had 66. Sunnyside was third at 49.
Two top-ranked Panthers, Chase Randall at 106 and Chase Tebbetts at 120, also reached the semifinals, along with Cameron Crawford at 152. Randall faces third-ranked Cole Lance of Monroe, Tebbetts’ opponent will be Cody Bolstad of Puyallup and Crawford meets seventh-ranked Patrick Workman of Richland.
“It’s kind of a roller-coaster ride. We’ve won some good ones, obviously, but we lost a couple we thought we’d win,” McLean said. “They’re competing hard. They’re shaking hands and getting after it, that’s all you can ask for.”
In 3A, Mt. Spokane got six wrestlers into the semifinals to stand within one-half point of first-place Bonney Lake.
“It hasn’t been bad and it hasn’t been great,” Wildcats coach Travis Hughes said. “It’s mostly been going according to script.”
Jarrett Sharp, ranked second at 113, was the first Mt. Spokane wrestler to qualify for the semifinals and will meet seventh-ranked Cody Chabot of Bethel. Fourth-ranked freshman Casey Howerton moves on to face top-ranked Brandon Kaylor of Bonney Lake at 120, Defending state champion Jake Howerton will battle Southridge’s sixth-ranked Steven Saltz at 152.
“Jarret has been wrestling really well,” Hughes said. “We’ve got to get some of our guys through the consolation bracket to have a chance to win as a team.”
University advanced two to the semifinals:second-ranked Terrell Sanders at 120 and fourth-ranked Neftali Lopez at 185.
Sanders will face Chiawana’s Kobe Santoyo. Lopez’s opponent will be top-ranked Quinzy Salu of Decatur.