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Mustangs could be tough at district


Coach Duhrkoop says hell put a lot of bodies on the mat, and he anticipates success

Milwaukie High School wrestling coach Brian Duhrkoop is optimistic heading into next weekend’s Northwest Oregon Conference District Tournament.

“We could finish anywhere from third to sixth,” said Duhrkoop. “But I feel good about our prospects. There are 28 slots at district, and we’ve got 25 of them filled. We’re pretty young, but depending on how our second kids do, we could do well....

“With our youth and the wrestlers we’ll have coming back, I’m excited about the future. We should be right up where we used to be, or even better, the next couple of years.”

Duhrkoop said he has at least six wrestlers with a decent chance of placing high at regionals and earning a trip to state this year — juniors Jordan Ostrander (126), Dre Edwards (126 or 132), Justin Edwards (138), Chris Burton (138 or 145) and Clay Bispham (220); and sophomore Anthony Flynn (195).

Ostrander sports a season record of 20-6, with nine falls; Burton sports a season record of 21-9, with 16 falls; and Bispham enters district at 16-6, with 10 falls.

The one sad note is the absence of senior Brenton Oten (170), who had his season ended a few weeks ago by a knee injury. Oten, with an overall record of 15-5 and 13 falls, is one of only four seniors on this year’s team.

The district tournament runs Friday and Saturday at Wilsonville High School. Third through sixth place matches are scheduled to begin Saturday at 3 p.m., with the championship finals to follow, at 7 p.m.

The Mustangs were impressive in last week’s dual meet with Parkrose, a 41-27 Mustang victory. Milwaukie won seven of the 11 matches contested on the mat en route to the dual win.

Sophomore River Meyer (170) and junior Cody Neuhaus (195) both won by fall. Neuhaus dispatched with Parkrose’s Richard King in the first round.

Bispham was impressive. Wrestling up a weight at 285, he defeated Parkrose’s Kiefer Sebastian by 9-6 decision.

Ostrander was no less impressive at 126, earning a 2-1 decision over one of Parkrose’s better wrestlers, Ray Hernandez. Ostrander earned a takedown in the first round. Hernandez, a two-time state qualifier, scored his only point on a late third round escape.

“Ostrander’s win solidified the win for our team,” said Duhrkoop.

Milwaukie 120-pounder Jake Hickey and Milwaukie 182-pounder David Ferguson were both all business, winning by major decision.

Milwaukie also had a winner at 138, where Justin Edwards dominated in a 6-0 win over Darrick Williams. And the Mustangs accepted forfeits at 106 and 220.

Milwaukie wasn’t as fortunate on Feb. 13, as the Mustangs lost their final league dual of the season, 51-24, in a meet at Wilsonville.

The Wildcats won seven matches by fall.

“In four or five of our losses, we almost got the fall,” said Duhrkoop. “The meet was a lot closer than it looks.”

Milwaukie winners were Meyer (160) and Ferguson (182), by first-round fall; Ostrander, by 4-2 decision over Tristan Greco; Burton, by 15-9 decision over Collin Hazen-Cubbage; and Trey Edwards (126), by forfeit.

Milwaukie finished the league dual season with a record of 3-4, defeating Putnam, Parkrose and Liberty.

Sandy went undefeated and finished atop the eight-team NWOC. Liberty (5-2) and Sherwood (5-2) tied for second place.