Sports

Marysville-Pilchuck’s Donaldson places fifth at Mat Classic

TACOMA — The final 20 seconds of Brian Donaldson’s wrestling career at Marysville-Pilchuck epitomized his talent.

Donaldson was down 7-6 when forced out of bounds, but with time running out, he pressured his opponent into a stall point and took him down as the clock hit zero.

“I knew he was trying to wait it out so I went at him and baited him into stalling,” said the crafty senior. “I just put myself in better position and there isn’t much he can do.”

Those final few seconds earned Donaldson fifth place at 140 pounds — his first medal.

“It’s a great feeling and I’m happy to get this far,” Donaldson said.

Tomahawks coach Craig Iversen expected nothing less from Donaldson, who he said works as hard as any of his wrestlers.

“That’s just the kind of guy he is,” Iversen said. “That (last match) wasn’t flashy, he just got the job done. Brian is a hard-worker and a team captain.”

Marysville-Pilchuck took three wrestlers to the Mat Classic, but Donaldson was the only one to advance to the second day. Donaldson was pinned by Heritage’s Kyle Walker in the second period to start the meet. He then won three consecutive matches against Bobby Hawkins of Rogers (4-0), Andrew Smith of Kent Meridian (9-4) and Dalton Evanger of Graham-Kapowsin (9-3) before meeting Walker again and losing 5-4.

Senior Luke Shumaker lost his first two matches at 130 pounds to Kevin Rapp of Mount. Tahoma in overtime 6-4 and then Samir Faizoullin of Kentlake 7-2. Junior Brandon Blevins suffered a first-round loss to Tanner Sturdevant of Graham-Kapowsin 10-0 and then to Kamm Freudenstein of Foss 8-7.

“Anytime you place somebody you’ve got to be happy,” Iversen said. “We’d have liked to place them all, but that didn’t happen. Now we’re just excited for Brian.

CALDWELL FINISHES THIRD

Lakewood senior Keely Caldwell had a rough road to third place.

The nationally ranked 125-pounder suffered an opening-round defeat before pinning her way to the podium.

“It feels like first,” said Caldwell. “This is the best I’ve ever done.”

Caldwell trailed Kennewick’s Hanna Moon 7-4 in the second round before pulling out a pin.

“I’m pretty good at not letting pressure get to me,” said Caldwell about trailing in a match. “I knew that I could keep going at her and win.”

Caldwell was one of three Lakewood girls at the Mat Classic, along with 135-pound junior Tasha Postlethwaite and 130-pound freshman Allyson Lawton, who both took two early losses.

“Tasha fought off her back against a couple of tough girls and Alyssa wrestled really well, especially for a freshman at state,” said Lakewood coach Tom O’Hara. “And I’m going to miss Keely. She’s totally coachable and every time we went to a tournament, I knew we were going to be there until the end.”

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