The Blaine boys wrestling team continues to have a strong season as it sends 13 wrestlers to the regional tournament at Vashon High School on Saturday, February 10.
In total, 17 wrestlers qualified at last weekend’s sub-regional tournament, and 13 of those will take the ferry to Vashon for a chance to make a run in the Mat Classic XXXV in Tacoma starting Friday, February 16.
The top three wrestlers from each of the seven weight classes will qualify for the state tournament, with the fourth-place finishers named as alternates.
Head coach Tom Hinz expects a majority of Blaine’s wrestlers to make a credible run at the state championship in their respective weight classes.
“We have a really good shot of sending 11 to 12 guys to state,” Hinz said. “We’re dominant. I think a lot of those guys have a chance of placing at state and we have a good core group of guys that are trying really hard.”
If Blaine was hoping to build even more confidence heading into regionals with a chance at the Mat Classic, last weekend surely helped.
Four Blaine boys won their weight classes, with six placing second on the podium, and one placing third.
Sophomore Cole Voight (113), junior Daniel Johner (132), and seniors Cal Fitzgerald (144) and Victor Gervol (285) all finished at the top of the podium at subregionals.
“Dominant,” as Hinz put it, indeed.
Despite a couple of injuries that have nagged the team and kept it from wrestling at full-strength this season, Hinz said this year’s team just kept battling and hitting milestones.
“We have some really big studs on this team,” Hinz said.
To round out a great tournament for the Borderites, Hinz was also named subregional Coach of the Year after leading Blaine to multiple podium finishes.
But there’s still a few more mats to conquer.
A play-in game is as high stakes a moment you’ll see in high school basketball.
Win, and continue on to face a formidable first-seed Lynden Christian (19-2, 13-2 Northwest Conference) team in the 1A District 1 semifinals. Lose, and the season is over.
The Borderites (4-16, 2-13 NWC), matched up against Mount Baker (3-17, 1-14 NWC) for this play-in game on February 5.
Mount Baker was one of the two conference opponents Blaine beat previously on the season, winning 62-44 on January 15. That game, four Borderites scored double-digit points, with senior Noah Tavis leading the way with 15.
This playoff matchup against the Mountaineers seemed like the opposite of that game.
The Borderites couldn’t string together offensive possessions, and got in foul trouble throughout the game, losing 65-54, making their season come to an abrupt end.
Four Mount Baker players scored double-digit points, and no Borderite recorded more than nine points on the night. The Borderites trailed by as little as three points at halftime, but just couldn’t get the clutch buckets needed in the final eight minutes to beat Mount Baker.
It was a hard-fought year for the Borderites, made harder by an injury that took junior guard Josiah Weeda off the court for the back half of the season, severely limiting the Borderites’ options offensively.
The Borderites had five seniors – Uno Nevarez, Justin Minjarez, Conner Dalry, Jesse Deming and Noah Tavis – play their final game at home in front of the home faithful.
Those five seniors all scored in their final high school game, combining for 32 of Blaine’s 54 points.
The Blaine competitive cheer team competed at the state tournament in Battle Ground on February 2 and 3, placing seventh in the 2B/1A/2A category.
The 2023-24 season was just the second in team history, with the competitive cheer team’s inaugural season held last year.
The Blaine girls wrestling team placed fourth in last weekend’s 1B/2B/1A/2A subregional tournament on February 3 at Squalicum High School.
Blaine had seven girls competing on the mat; Lucy Dahl, Makenna Lausier and Claire Hume all earned second-place finishes in their respective weight classes, with Abby Marquez and Cheyenne Rose-Jimenez each placing fourth and Analicea Ordonez earning fifth.
“I cannot express how immensely proud I am of these girls,” head coach Damon Higgins said. “Blood, sweat, sacrifice, and they do it all over again each week.”
The Borderites hope to continue their journey to the state championship Mat Classic with the 1B/2B/1A/2A regional tournament at White River High School in Buckley on Saturday, February 10.
Girls basketball defeated Ferndale 47-43 on senior night, February 1, putting the team at an even .500 record heading into the 1A District 1 playoffs.
The Borderites had to fend off the visiting Golden Eagles in the final few minutes after Ferndale tied the game at 43-43.
The Borderites were able to shut out the visitors for the remainder of the game, and some clutch free throws earned a win in the Borderites’ final regular season game.
Senior Jordyn Vezzetti scored 13, and Teia Dube added 10 along with 12 rebounds on the night.
It was the final home game for four seniors: Vezzetti, Amelia Berkeley, Alia Ball and Deja Dube.
With that win, the Borderites (10-10, 6-9 NWC) earned the three-seed in the five-team playoff tournament, and travelled to face two-seed Lynden Christian (16-6, 13-3 NWC) on Wednesday, February 7 at 7:30 p.m.
The Borderites were unable to get much going offensively against a staunch Lyncs defense. What started as a tough defecit in the first quarter turned to disaster when senior Jordyn Vezzetti left the game with what appeared to be an ankle injury.
With one of Blaine's leading scorers and best interior defender out of the game early, the Borderites just couldn't stop the high-powered Lynden Christian offense from doing whatever it wanted, losing 74-21.
Despite the loss, the Borderites finished the regular season at 10-10, earning the third-seed in the NWC district playoffs, so they still have a chance to make it to state, but the path just got harder.
The Borderites will face Meridian on Saturday, February 10 at 1:45 p.m. at Lynden High School. Win and Blaine advances to the final round with a shot at state qualification; lose and the season is over. Last time Blaine played Meridian, Blaine won 49-34 on January 9.
Stats provided by whatcomhoops.com.
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