For the first time in five years, Kennewick High School is able to put a full lineup on the mat for a dual.
It didn’t much matter against Hermiston, which won nine of 14 matches to hand the Lions a 54-27 Mid-Columbia Conference loss Thursday night at the Dawg House.
The Bulldogs made a clean sweep of the double dual, beating Richland 69-8, a match in which Hermiston took advantage of seven forfeits.
“It keeps things in perspective,” Hermiston coach Kyle Larson said of the matches. “We know who is tough. We are just trying to put guys in position to do their best.”
That was Jordan Franklin. The 138-pound junior won both of his matches on the mat.
Against Richland, he recorded a technical fall (21-5) over Taylor Coleman, then pinned Blake Brooks of Kennewick in 4 minutes, 17 seconds.
“We try to leave the room a little bit better every day,” Larson said. “We have a ton of work to do, and we are continuing to work on the fundamentals and the basics.”
Against Richland, the Bombers forfeited 106 to 126, and in the upper weights from 195 to 285.
In the middle, the Bulldogs got pins from Gage Shipley (132), Chris Lomeli (145) and Blake Betz (182).
Richand’s Patrick Workman earned a technical fall (18-3) over Trevor Wagner at 160, and the Bombers’ other win came at 170, where Connor Gibbon defeated Ethan Teel 11-9, registering a takedown with 6 seconds left in the match.
The Lions put up more of a fight.
The Bulldogs jumped out to an 18-3 lead with pins by Isaac Lambert (120) and Hunter Dyer (126) and Franklin.
Kennewick made things interesting as Jacoby Weiber pinned Lomeli in the second round, and Brody Ray pinned Avant Ortiz at 3:18.
Hermiston won the next two matches to make it 30-15, but the Lions refused to back down.
Dylan Holt pinned Betz at 182, and Caleb Gragg did the same to Stanley Scott at 195 to make it 30-27 with four matches remaining.
“We are freshman and sophomore heavy, but they are stepping it up,” said Kennewick coach AJ Vogtman, whose team opened the night with a 63-18 win over Richland. “We are a lot more aggressive and they are putting it together.”
The Bulldogs won the final four matches by pin — Jon Lee (220), Dustyn Coughlin (285), Zayne Helfer (106) and Adrian Delgado (113) — to secure the win and improve to 2-2 in the MCC standings.
“We want to put a product on the mat that people want to see,” Larson said. “We like them old or young. We just want to fill the stands.”
Hermiston’s Adrian Delgado placed eighth at 106 pounds Saturday at the Tri-State tournament at North Idaho College in Coeur d’Alene.
Delgado, who finished 3-3 on the weekend, was pinned by Rene Pierre of Polson (Mont.) in the seventh/eighth placing match.
The Bulldogs, who had just one placer, finished 34th in the team standings with 42 points.
Isaac Lambert (113) won his first match of the tournament before finishing 2-2.
Hermiston had two wrestlers at 220 pounds. Jon Lee lost in the quarterfinals and finished 2-2. Sean Stewart also finished 2-2.
At 120 pounds, Hunter Dyer won his first match, then lost his next two.
Gage Shipley (126) won his first match then lost in the quarterfinals. He won his first consolation match, then fell to Riley Buth of Mt. Spokane 6-4.
At 152, Trevor Wagner won his first match by pin, lost in the quarterfinals, then went 1-1 in the consolation bracket.
Jordan Franklin went 1-2 at 138 pounds.