Sports

Romero takes sixth at Mat Classic XXI

South Whidbey grappler Trevor Romero won three matches — two pins and a technical foul — and lost three on his way to placing sixth in the 189-pound weight class in the state wrestling championships over the weekend.

The state wrestling finals are held each year in the Tacoma Dome, featuring 24 athletes contesting on

48 mats before thousands of wrestling fans.

Despite having just one wrestler, Falcon coach Jim Thompson noted that Romero’s wins single-handedly allowed South Whidbey to place 39th of 54 teams, ahead of Cascade Conference opponents Lakewood, Cedarcrest and Sultan.

Thompson said Romero did his best work at the Classic.

“I’m proud of him, especially winning his first match, which is huge from a mental standpoint,” he said. “At the college level, a sixth place equals an All-State designation.”

Romero said coach Thompson brought him to the dome on Thursday so he could scope out the venue’s dimensions.

“It’s big, with tons of wrestlers, but I knew what to expect,” Romero said.

“The first guy, Adam Morales from Grandview, I pinned in the second round. He was tough.”

Romero lost his second to River Ridge’s Cameron Smith on points, but rebounded to beat Nick King from Clarkston in a “technical fall,” so named because Romero racked up 15 points but no pin.

On Saturday, Romero pinned Ethan Hinton from Sequim in the third round, but lost to Quincy’s Michael Reyes before facing Lynden’s Neils Brisbane.

“We were both tired and he was able to pin me in the second round,” Romero recalled. “And I was sick right after; maybe I ate too much before the match.”

Romero said that his high school wrestling days were fun but he’s got a new gig to look forward to after graduating in June.

“I ship out June 29 for basic training in the U.S. Army,” he said. “I’m going to be a combat engineer.”

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