A showdown is looming.
It’s become an annual event, usually to decide the Greater Spokane League championship. Next Thursday, Mead will host Mt. Spokane in the regular-season finale to settle the debate – for this season, anyway.
Both teams will enter the affair undefeated in league action.
“How cool is that?” Mead coach Phil McLean asked. “This means a lot for our community, our kids, the school district and fans of wrestling on the north side.”
McLean said the matchup is a toss-up.
“Every team has little adversities each week,” he said. “We could wrestle against them several times and have a different outcome each time. It’s just how the teams respond to the adversities in front of them for that particular meet.”
On Wednesday, Mead (8-0) kept its record intact by downing Shadle Park 69-3 on the road. Mt. Spokane (8-0) topped visiting Gonzaga Prep 70-6.
Both teams have to be considered favorites to make an impact at Mat Classic XXXI on Feb. 15-16 at the Tacoma Dome.
“We’ve had an interesting journey this year,” McLean said. “I’m really proud of how our younger kids have responded and developed. They’ve competed really well.”
The Panthers are coming off a win at the 31-team Jug Beck Rocky Mountain Classic in Missoula last weekend. Cameron Crawford (170) and Ben Voigtlaender (205) picked up individual titles, while Jonathan Mason (113), Chase Tebbets (132) and Trace Franks (285) finished second and Ryan Clark (120) placed fourth.
Mt. Spokane took top team honors over the 15-team field at the Viking Invite in Lake Stevens, Washington, with wins from Jarret Sharp (113) and Riley Buth (126), a second-place finish from Ky Haney (132) and thirds by Casey Howerton (138) and Mason Miethe (182).
Earlier in the season, Mead took first at the prestigious Tri-State meet at North Idaho College while Mt. Spokane finished fourth in the 65-team event.
The Panthers lost two-time state placer Chase Randall (120) to a dislocated elbow at Tri-State. McLean said Randall is most likely out for the season.
“It was pretty devastating when Chase got hurt, but I’m proud of the way our leaders responded and picked it up in his absence,” McLean said.
The District 8 4A tournament will be at East Valley. The 3A tourney will be hosted by Hermiston (Oregon) HS from the Mid-Columbia Conference. Both are scheduled Feb. 1-2.
In a battle between undefeated squads on Wednesday, visiting Cheney (3-0) topped West Valley (3-1) 44-30. West Valley’s league season is over while Cheney will host Clarkston next Thursday in its league finale.
Luke Ruby (120) and Michael Bozeman (132) were among five Blackhawks that delivered pins. West Valley will participate in the Dream Duals on Saturday while Cheney is slated for the King of the Hills tourney at Black Hills HS.
The District 7 2A tournament will be Feb. 1-2 at East Valley.
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