Monday Roundup: Grays Harbor College women’s wrestling team places second at Nationals, leads Chokers to Collegiate Cup

Also: Montesano falls to King’s Way Christian in boys soccer

The Grays Harbor College women’s wrestling program continues to thrive as the Chokers earned a second-place finish at the National Collegiate Wrestling Association National Championships on Saturday in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

The Chokers were led by star sophomore Reneah Ureste, who claimed the 191-pound national championship with a quick 25-second pinfall victory over Texas Tech’s Melissa Moore.

Grays Harbor’s Kali Hood placed second in the 235-pound class after losing via fall to defending national champion Katie Moore of Stony Brook 38 seconds into the third round.

Four Chokers placed third in their respective weight classes, including former Aberdeen standout Katie Gakin (170 pounds). Gakin rebounded from a semi-final loss to upset the tournament’s No. 1 seed – Liberty’s Maile Ka-Ahanui – with a second-round pin in the consolation final.

Joining Gakin as Chokers third-place finishers were Aleyda Rodriguez (116), Megan Webster (191) and JoJera Dodge (235).

GHC’s Aliya Hammons placed fourth at 109 pounds.

The Chokers took second with 80 points.

Ottawa (Arizona) won the title with 120 points. Big Bend Community College placed third (41 points) followed by Washington State (3605) and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (34).

The Grays Harbor men’s team placed ninth overall and had two competitors earn a podium spot in the 141-pound class.

GHC’s Elijah Gandert trailed in the 141-pound final to Florida Gator Alfonso Vargas, but scored an escape point to force sudden victory.

Gandert nearly completed a takedown to win the title until Vargas scrambled and was able to score to defeat the Chokers standout.

GHC’s Ian Campbell joined Vargas on the podium with an eighth-place finish.

The GHC men’s team placed ninth with 78.5 points, eight points better than 10th-place Florida.

Bellarmine took first with 206.5 points with Liberty (189.5) and Apprentice (135) placing second and third, respectively.

It was a banner tournament for GHC, with seven Chokers women and two men earning All-American honors.

At the event’s conclusion, the Chokers were presented with the Collegiate Cup, which is awarded to the school with the most combined points for its male and female programs over the season.

The Chokers finished second and third in the Collegiate Cup race over the previous two seasons, with Liberty University claiming the honor in both campaigns.

With Gakin’s victory over Ka-Ahanui, the Chokers clinched the title.

Gakin and Ureste were also recognized as Academic All-Americans for the 2022-23 season.

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King’s Way Christian 6, Montesano 1

Montesano struggled to slow down the King’s Way Christian offense in a 6-1 loss on Monday in Montesano.

The Bulldogs (1-1 overall) fell behind by two goals early after the Knights scored in the second and 13th minutes of the game.

KWC made it a 4-0 game after a goal on a free kick in the 23rd minute and scored against less than two minutes later.

Montesano’s Felix Romero scored the Bulldogs lone goal of the game in the 25th minute to make it a 4-1 score.

Knights goals in the 46th and 75th minute rounded out the scoring.

Montesano takes on Eatonville at 7 p.m. Friday at Eatonville High School.

King’s Way Christian 4 2 – 6

Montesano 1 0 – 1