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Wildcats earn 11 state berths | Wrestling
It was near perfection as 11 of the 12 Oak Harbor High School wrestlers who qualified for last weekend's regional tournaments earned berths in the state meet.
State, Mat Classic XXV, is Friday and Saturday, Feb. 15 and 16, at the Tacoma Dome.
As a team, the Oak Harbor boys (176.5 points) finished second in their 11-team regional at Marysville-Pilchuck High School and the girls (35 points) placed ninth out of 13 schools who scored at Sedro-Woolley High School Saturday, Feb. 9.
The top four individuals in each weight class qualified for the state meet.
Stanwood (184.5 points) won the boys title and Mount Baker (108) the girls.
Of the nine Wildcat boys who competed at regional, seven reached the finals with seniors Cody Fakkema (132 pounds) and Courtney Shavers (170) collecting titles.
Sophomore Christian Bertram (106), sophomore Jeremy Vester (126), junior Jahleel Vester (132), senior Joshua Crebbin (160) and sophomore Jackson Constant (285) placed second.
Senior Jacob Fitzgerald defeated sophomore teammate Mark Johnston 7-2 in the match for third and fourth at 138.
For the girls, sophomore Zaiha Sams (118) finished second, senior Aimee Oliver (155) third and senior Desiree Dillaman (118) sixth.
Fakkema won by a fall (2:33) and 15-0 to reach the finals where he defeated another Wildcat, Jahleel Vester, 4-2 for the crown.
Shavers, who entered district two weeks ago as the fourth seed, completed his climb to the finals with 16-1 and 14-6 wins before taking the title match with a fall (1:16).
Sams reached the finals with two pins (1:25 and 2:39) before being pinned (1:43).
Oliver lost in the first round then won three straight, including one in double overtime, to nab third.
Fakkema placed third at state last season, Jahleel Vester was eighth in 2011 and qualified last year along with Crebbin, Jeremy Vester and Johnston.
Head coach Mike Crebbin was, overall, pleased with the showing of the boys who won a higher percentage of their matches (72 percent) than any other team. Stanwood and Ferndale, which finished third, had three more wrestlers at regional than Oak Harbor.
Assistant coach Larry Falcon, who coached the girls, said, "I was really happy and proud of how all three wrestled. Zaiha wrestled lights out in her semis; Desiree had to battle through the consolation…and lost a heartbreaker at the end; (and) Aimee came out and battled through the consolations as well."
Oak Harbor regional results:
Bertram (106), second place: won by fall, 1:39; won 11-1; lost by fall, 1:09.
Jeremy Vester (126), second place: won 15-0; won 12-5; lost 6-5.
Fakkema (132), first place: won by fall, 2:33; won 15-0; won 4-2.
Jahleel Vester (132), second place: won by fall, 1:31; won by fall, 2:40; lost 4-2.
Fitzgerald (138), third place: won by fall, 3:35; lost 9-4; won by fall, 2:59; won 7-2.
Johnston (138), fourth place: won by fall, 3:48; lost 9-8; won 7-2; lost 7-2.
Crebbin (160), second place: won by fall, 2:14; won by fall, :57; lost by fall, 1:31.
Shavers (170), first place: won 16-1; won 14-6; won by fall, 1:16.
Jackson (285), second place: won by fall, :46; won by fall, 1:17; lost by fall, 1:13.
Sams (118), second place: won by fall, 1:25; won by fall, 2:39; lost by fall, 1:43.
Dillaman (118), sixth place: lost by fall, 1:50; won 10-5; lost by fall, 3:45; lost by fall, 3:38.
Oliver (155), third place: lost by fall, 3:14; won 7-2; won 5-4; won 3-2.