'Cats duke it out

It’s rare for a team to walk away from a blowout loss and feel good.

Friday night’s 49-13 dual meet loss to state wrestling powerhouse Lake Stevens was certainly one of those occasions for Oak Harbor.

“You couldn’t ask for more than that, really,” said a proud Wildcat head coach Mike Crebbin.

Three wins and four losses decided by four points or less against a Lake Stevens program that won the 2004 4A state title along with 101 consecutive dual meets going back to 1993, left good reason for the OHHS coach to feel optimistic.

“I was happy, we had a few close fights,” Crebbin said. “We’re going to continue to work hard and remove some of the mistakes and hopefully in three weeks we can come out on top of some of these guys in districts.”

Oak Harbor earned its wins from junior Miles Hartt (145), senior Sean O’Brien (171) and junior Daniel Varn (275).

Hartt led the entire match against Viking senior Kyle Hughes, fending off a late comeback for a 5-4 win.

“Miles is wrestling tough,” Crebbin said. “He’s just coming on.”

O’Brien, who missed the first few weeks of the season recovering from knee surgery, picked up his fourth win in four attempts, 11-1 over junior Darren McGuire.

“Sean’s looking better every match,” Crebbin said. “He’s in the right progress, he’s working on things, he’s feeling a lot better.”

Varn gathered the only Wildcat pin on the evening pulling off a fireman’s carry and rolling a smaller Blu Shwartzmiller to his back with 1:40 into the first round.

“When you see somebody who weighs 275 move someone over their back that quickly it’s just nice,” Crebbin said.

Although Oak Harbor won just three matches, it didn’t go down without a fight in defeat.

OHHS junior David Wasickanin (130) started the meet off with a strong performance. Wasickanin led the first match, 6-5, going into the third round before Josh Monson pulled off a couple of big third-round takedowns for a 12-9 victory.

Wildcat senior David Marriott (140) followed with a close 7-5 loss to Kai VanLueuven, while senior Josh Stratton (152) lost a narrow 5-4 decision to senior Billy Moehrle and senior Robert Lemme (125) fell 6-2 to Mitch Tipton.

The team loss bumped OHHS to 1-4 in league dual meets and 3-4 overall.

Crebbin agrees dual meet victories are nice, but he likes what he sees from the Wildcats right now.

“The kids are just starting to get a fire,” he said. “It’s one thing to go out and wrestle and not get your hand raised and it’s another thing to get defeated — none of these guys are getting defeated.”

The Wildcats hosted Marysville-Pilchuck last night and are on the road at 7 p.m., tomorrow, Jan. 19 against Arlington.

Everett Classic

The Oak Harbor wrestling team returned to the mat Saturday where they took fourth out of nine teams at the Everett Classic with 168.5 points. Cascade (232) won the tournament, while Everett (176.5) and Juanita (172) narrowly finished ahead of OHHS.

The top finisher for the Wildcats was Wasickanin with a first place in the 130-pound division. Senior Colin Blyther (135), senior Jeff Lang (152), senior Mark Radach (189) and Hartt (145) all finished in second place. Marriott (140) and O’Brien (171) finished in third.

Lake Stevens 49, Oak Harbor 13

130-Monson (LS) dec. Wasickanin, 12-9 ; 135-K. Kubec (LS) pinned Blyther, 1:02; 140-Vanleuven (LS) dec. Marriott, 6-5; 145-Hartt (OH) dec. Hughes, 5-4; 152-Moehrly (LS) dec. Stratton, 5-4; 160-Burnett (LS) pinned Martin, 1:49; 171-O’Brien (OH) dec. Mcguire, 11-1; 189-Wilborne (LS) won by technical fall over Radach, 18-1; 215-Austin (LS) pinned Johnston, 4:38; 275-Varn (OH) pinned Shwartzmiller, 1:40; 103-Zweifel (LS) pinned Gronbach, 3:15; 112-Alewine (LS) won by technical fall over Daniels, 18-1; 119-Eacrett (LS) dec. O’Neil, 7-0; 125-Tipton (LS) dec. Lemme, 6-2.

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