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Bulldogs fall to Foxes at final home dual


by: PHIL HAWKINS - Friends and family lined up to celebrate Woodburns six senior wrestlers - David Soto, Stephen Ovchinnikov, Ben Heddrick, Jon Uriarte, Stephan Snegireff and Rodolfo Hernandez -  on Feb. 11.Without a pair of its top senior wrestlers, the Woodburn Bullldogs lost to the visiting Silverton Foxes 58-10 on Feb. 11.

Woodburn was missing the services of Rodolfo Hernandez and Jonathan Uriarte on senior night, who were held out due to injury. Although the Bulldogs had some success against the Foxes in the lighter weight divisions, Silverton won the final six matches of the night to run away with a big victory.

Although the final score was fairly lopsided against Woodburn, the Bulldogs came away with a win in the most exciting match of the night after Marco Vasquez-Santos won an 11-10 decision that came down to the final seconds.

“Before the match, my coach would tell me the match doesn’t go to the bigger, stronger man, but theman who thinks he can,” said Vasquez-Santos. “So that’s what was going through my mind at the beginning, because he was bigger than me.”

Vasqeuz-Santos shifted up to the 132-pound weight class to face Jacob Umbridge of Silverton and the two traded points throughout the contest. Although the Woodburn grappler maintained the upper hand throughout most of the match, Umbridge was quick to counter and never trailed by more than three points.

Vasquez-Santos opened the contest with a quick takedown, but Umbridge responded with an escape and a takedown of his own to take a 3-2 lead. Vasquez-Santos took the lead back to end the period and scored a takedown to open the second period and build a 6-3 advantage.

The two traded takedowns and escapes for the final four minutes before Umbridge tied the score at 9-9 with less than a minute left. Both wrestlers worked for an advantageous position before Vasquez-Santos swooped in with 15 seconds left in the match to put Umbridge on his knees and take an 11-9 lead. Umbridge escaped with several seconds left to earn one more point, but the match concluded before he could mount a counter.

After the match, Vasquez-Santos admitted he was winded toward the end and needed to build his endurance.

“It was a really good fight toward the end,” he said. “I kind of ran out of conditioning, but hey, we’ve got two weeks to work on that, so I’ll be back with my conditioning, no problem.”

The win from Vasquez-Santos gave Woodburn its second straight win of the night after losing its first three. Silverton took a 12-0 lead after the trio of wins to open the night before Eddie Bravo put the Bulldogs on the board with a 9-1 major decision over Chaz White in the 126-pound bout. Vasquez-Santos’ win pulled Woodburn back to 12-7, but it was the closest the team would get on the night.

Silverton won the next two contests by fall to take a 24-7 lead. Stephan Snegireff topped Braden Sinn at 152 pounds in a 9-3 decision to cut Woodburn’s deficit to 24-10, but the Foxes won the next six matches convincingly — one by forfeit, two by technical fall and three by pin — to add to the final 48-point victory.

Although the night belonged to Silverton, the victory by Vasquez-Santos gave the young Bulldog wrestler something to build on leading up to the district championships.

“I’ve never wrestled (Umbridge) before in my life. It was my first time,” he said. “I bumped up a weight, so it was quite an experience. I hope he remembers my name.”