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Wrestling: Canby's Alejandro Sandoval earns spot in state semifinals (updates)

The senior wins his two matches on the first day of competition at the Class 6A championships.


PORTLAND — The Canby wrestling team had seven athletes in action on the first day of the Class 6A state championships at Veterans Memorial Coliseum.

Here’s a complete look at the Cougars through two rounds of competition (as of 6:55 p.m. Feb. 28):

Alejandro Sandoval will be Canby’s lone representative in the championship semifinals March 1.

The heavyweight senior began the first day by defeating Forest Grove senior Christian Rincon by fall in 1 minute 16 seconds in the first round.

He then powered past Roseburg junior Aidan McGowan with a win by 4-0 decision in the quarterfinals. McGowan had upset top-seeded Tigard senior Victor Ceja in the opening round.

Sandoval is confident he can hold his own against the state’s best heavyweight wrestlers. He won titles at the Reser’s Tournament of Champions and the Larry Owings Invitational and earned several other runner-up finishes, including at the regional tournament Feb. 21-22 at Reynolds High School in Troutdale.

Sandoval is scheduled to enter the semifinals against Clackamas junior Zach Jett, whom he defeated 7-0 in the regional tournament.

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Noel Hygelund (152) entered this year’s state meet with a No. 4 seed after defeating West Linn’s Jacob Taylor 10-2 to win a regional title.

And despite missing about six weeks of the season with a knee injury, the senior started off his first day at the Class 6A finals with a pin of Aloha sophomore Luis Torres in just 42 seconds.

The victory propelled Hygelund into the quarterfinals, where he lost a 12-7 decision to Roseburg junior David Harker.

Hygelund, who placed third at last year’s OSAA championships, will now compete in the consolation bracket.

***

No. 2 Gus Warren was tripped up in the 106-pound quarterfinals, losing to Forest Grove junior Christia Guerra by 7-0 decision.

The loss followed his opening-round victory over Roseburg freshman Ashton Faas by 15-2 major decision.

Warren, who won a regional title with a 5-4 win over David Douglas junior Andrew Curry, wasn’t the only victim of an upset in his state bracket: No. 1 Hillsboro freshman Ruben Rodriguez-Saenz, who defeated Warren twice at the Reser’s Tournament of Champions, lost to Roseburg freshman Bennett Mesa in the quarterfinals.

***

Keltin Boykin sat sullenly in a darkened arena hallway, his hands in his lap, his head hunched towards the floor.

The senior had just lost his opening-round match at 195 pounds to Keizer-McNary junior Alvarro Venegas by fall in 3:03.

But the North Marion transfer, a 4A state qualifier last season who placed third at this year’s regional tournament, was able to regroup.

In his first consolation match, he pinned Hillsboro-Glencoe junior Daniel Hernandez-Reyes in just 31 seconds.

***

Drew Boyer (106) qualified for the state meet in his first year at Canby but was unable to come away with a victory.

Boyer, who placed fourth in his weight class at the regional tournament, was pinned by third-seeded North Medford sophomore Henry Cox in 38 seconds in his first match Feb. 28.

That loss sent him into the consolation bracket, where he lasted six minutes in a 6-0 loss to Newberg sophomore Aerie Baxter.

***

Alek Purtzer (120) was eliminated in back-to-back state matches after placing fourth at the regional tournament.

He lost to Roseburg senior Tommy Dill by fall in 2:57, and he was dealt a 9-2 loss by Southridge sophomore Bailey Hanthaley in his first consolation match.

The sophomore finished his duel with Hanthaley despite sustaining an injury after being slammed to the mat.

***

Justin Cardinale (132) was thrown into his first state competition against top-seeded Century senior Amari Sengsavanh.

The junior, who placed fourth at the regional tournament, lasted 5:34 before being put on his back.

The loss pitted Cardinale against Sprague junior Jake Vaughn in the consolation bracket, where he was eliminated after coming up on the short end of a 6-5 decision.

***

FACTS AND FIGURES

  • The Cougars have received 77 state bids since coach Jeremy Ensrud took the helm in 2007.
  • Canby has won 46 individual state wrestling titles in school history. The team’s last individual state champion was James Roberts (130 pounds) in 2010, and its last finalist was A.J. Ballard (140) in 2011.
  • The last five 6A team champions were Newberg (2009), Roseburg (2010-12) and David Douglas (2013). The Cougars, who finished in 22nd place last year, have not won a team title in wrestling since 1963 under then-coach Larry Wright.
  • Canby entered the state tournament after taking second place behind West Linn in the Three Rivers League. It was third at the regional tournament behind David Douglas and the Lions.
  • ***

    For updates, follow Jeff Goodman on Twitter.



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