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Cats pound Hawks
"With the stands filled to capacity in the Wildcats gym Thursday evening, a roar of approval rang out when Sean Hogan slammed his opponent to his back and forced his shoulders to mat, pinning him in just 48 seconds. The match put an exclamation point on an evening as the Oak Harbor wrestling team scored a decisive victory over Mountlake Terrace, 54-23. It was a good first match of the season, said Hogan. We have a lot of young guys on our team who are led by a great bunch of seniors.One senior in particular who led by example was Brian Lang, who placed third at state last year. Lang started his 2000-2001 campaign off in great fashion, dominating the Hawks' Joe Kim and pinning him in one minute, 25.6 seconds. I didn't quite get a full match, but for what I did I felt really good, said Lang. He's not quite as good as I thought he would be.We knew his opponent was a younger guy, and it is probably his second varsity match ever, said Oak Harbor assistant coach Rick Karjalainen. Brian had a lot of experience and savy. He was working new moves and stuff on him. During the match, Lang repeatedly looked at the score board so not to let the score get too far out of hand, said Karjalainen.The night got off to a good start overall for Oak Harbor, as the Wildcats jumped out to a 21-6 lead.After the Cats had dropped two consecutive matches by pins, Brent Thompson got Oak Harbor rolling again at the 145 weight mark with a technical fall.But Mountlake Terrace wouldn't die, and with the score just 26-18 in the Cats' favor, an important match came when Wildcat Andrew Nicolas was pit against Jeremy Garton. The match went the full three rounds. At one point the Wildcat fans were so loud that head coach Brian Farmer's repeated screams for Nicolas to grab Garton's head in order to turn him over were drowned out. Nicolas eventually won four points for his team by out scoring his opponent, 15-6.Danny Wichers at 130 pounds for Oak Harbor also wrestled an intense match, eventually beating his opponent 6-0. Although Wichers shut out his opponent, he couldn't shut him down as the grueling contest went the full three rounds and took its toll on both wrestlers.Oak Harbor's Kevin Lang looked impressive as he defeated C.J. Stephenson by pin fall in just 48 seconds at 112 pounds. Jon Garcia, Kyle Isaacson, Brent Lang and Chris Whiteman all received six points for their team as they won by forfeit. The night didn't start out the way that the Cats were hoping as Rory Magana was pinned in just 21 seconds in his first ever varsity action.A lot of guys, even though they didn't come out the victor, they wrestled at the varsity level, said Karjalainen. A loss doesn't necessarily mean it's bad. We were really pleased and we know what we need to work on. Ezreal Comicho and Matt Hill also went down for the Cats by pin fall and David Kazman lost by technical fall. I felt really good about our kids working, said Farmer. Even the kids that lost, a lot of those kids are very young and inexperienced and I was pleased with the entire team.Next week the Cats will take on a tough Mariner squad. The meet will pit two wrestlers that made it to state last year against each other. Next week we hope to match up Martinez, who is a state placer, and Brent Lang who is a state placer, and there is a grudge match between them, said Karjalainen. So we will hold that out for the last match maybe. We want to make a premier match out of it if the other coach will agree. The first meet of the season came on the heels of a big turnout for the team in the preseason preparations.We have a lot of great leadership and we have a lot of young kids, said Farmer. What we are going to have to do is help the young kids along. I really thought we had a great first 14 practices. If we continue to work hard during the season, good things will happen. Oak Harbor 54, Mountlake Terrace 23103-Shad McVay (MT) pinned Rory Magana1:39, first round; 112-Kevin Lang (OH) pinned C.J. Stephenson 1:15, first round; 119-John Garcia (OH) won by forfeit; 125-Kyle Isaacson (OH) won by forfeit; 130-Danny Wichers (OH) dec. Pistole, 6-0; 135-Kasey Cundy (MT) pinned Esrael Comicho in 3:30; 140-Erik Jansson (MT) pinned Matt Hill in 4:57; 145-Brent Thompson (OH) won by technical fall over Theo Smith, 16-1; 152-Andrew Nicholas (OH) won by major dec. over Jeremy Garton, 15-6; 160-Brian Lang (OH) pinned Joe Kim in 1:45; 171-Brent Lang (OH) won by forfeit; 189-Mong Chi Lin (MT) won by technical fall over David Kazman, 17-1; 215-Chris Whiteman (OH) won by forfeit; 275-Sean Hogan (OH) pinned Mike Olsen in 1:12. Records-Oak Harbor 1-0 league, 1-0 overall. Mountlake Terrace 0-1, 0-1. "