The Del Norte girls wrestling team put seven girls into the Brittany David Invitational on Saturday and finished just inside the top half in the team competition with 35 points to tie for 29th place overall out of 61 teams.
“We beat 30-some odd teams while only bringing seven girls —half a lineup,” said Del Norte head coach Clinton Schaad. “There were some dominant teams down there, but we worked hard and beat a lot of people that were in the mix there. It is really fun to watch the girls because they are super aggressive, their desire to win is awesome to watch.”
Although it was the third tournament of the season for the Warrior girls, it was the largest tournament for the team so far and it provided some of the toughest competition yet.
“The girls had a bit of a rough start,” Schaad said. “The tournament was a blind draw, but man we could have drawn better. In our first couple matches one was matched up against an All-American, another girl was matched up against a state qualifier, and we also went up against a state placer all in the first round. So we kind of had some tough competition right off the bat. But after that the girls came back out and it didn’t slow then down a bit. They wrestled great.”
The Warriors ended up with a pair of placers in the girls tournament lead by Autumn Turner’s fourth place finish. Turner started the day with a first round bye before being knocked out of the championship bracket. The Del Norte sophomore was able to battle back with two straight pins, however to reach the consolation final. Turner was beaten by major decision in the third place match, but she ended up in fourth for the Warriors highest place in the girls tournament.
“She wrestled great, and had some pretty tough competition,” Schaad said. “She had to battle back in one of her matches to win. She got head butted in another match and you could actually see the black eye and the mouth swelling during the match, but she finished strong.”
Danika Scott wrestled her way onto the podium for the third tournament in a row. The first-year junior wrestler started out hot reaching the 235 pound semifinals with back to back first-period pins. Scott ended up losing her final three matches of the day to the second, fourth and fifth place finishers before taking sixth place overall.
“Danika has been on a great run lately and she came out and got two pins in her first two matches, “Schaad said. “She took a tough loss in the semis and kind of slid down and lost a couple after that, but she is still brand new to the sport.”
Four of the other six wrestlers for the Warrior girls managed to pick up some team points with wins at Liberty High School.
Both Claire Taylor (126 pounds) and Haily Stover (160) went 2-2 overall on Saturday, with both of their wins each coming by pin for seven team points apiece.
Jenny Schaad went 1-2 in the 121 pound bracket, but picked up a pin in her win to add four team points to Del Norte’s total.
Ashley Turner also wrestled fairly well in the 189 pound bracket. Although she finished the tournament 0-2, both of her matches were close. Ashley Turner was knocked out of the championship bracket with a 7-3 loss by decision, then eliminated from the tournament after a close 7-5 loss.
“It is a brand new program, so we are getting everything figured out,” Schaad said. “They wrestle better every tournament. We had more wins down at the Brittany David than we did in Grants Pass, and we just want to keep improving. Heath Schaad and Sherrick Cron have been working really hard with the girls, and are their primary coaches. I kind of set the tone and pack the schedule, but those two have really taken to working with the girls and are doing a great job with them.”
Reach Michael Zogg at firstname.lastname@example.org .