Wrestlers back from Nationals

Six Hood River wrestlers return from ‘toughest tournament in the world’

Hood River wrestlers Katie Eddy, Juan Karlos Hernandez, David Brunk, Christian Marquez, Jessica DeHart and MaKenna Sullinger return this week after a long and all-around successful trip to the national wrestling tournament in Fargo, N.D.

The six wrestlers competed in freestyle and Greco Roman disciplines in what is known as the largest and toughest competition in the world for high school wrestlers.

Highlights from the week of wrestling includes a fifth-place finish and All-America status for Katie Eddy in the girls Junior National Freestyle tournament and a first-place, National Champion title for Jessica DeHart in the girls Cadet tournament.

The boys tournament featured stiff competition and full brackets composed of the top wrestlers from across the country; while the girls brackets continue to grow every year in both numbers and quality of competition.

“The biggest thing for us is that Hood River sent six wrestlers to the toughest tournament in the world for high school-aged wrestling,” said Trent Kroll, Hood River Valley High School head wrestling coach. “With multiple days of wrestling, making weight, wrestling and practicing, it’s a tough week that takes hard work and perseverance. Just winning a match is an accomplishment in itself.”

For 2012 HRVHS graduate Katie Eddy, the fifth-place finish came after a hard-fought tournament that concluded with a first-round pin for fifth and sixth place over Lily DeAragon of Idaho. The tournament is the last of Eddy’s high school career, which she ended as a girls three-time All-American, three-time state champion and a collegiate girls national champion. She moves on this fall to Okalahoma City University, where she’ll join the reigning and four-time women’s national champion team.

In the junior division, Brunk and Juan Karlos Hernandez wrestled in both freestyle and Greco Roman divisions. Brunk went 2-2 in the freestyle tournament and was one win away from placing. In the Greco tournament he went 0-2 and was eliminated on the first day. Hernandez went the other way to finish 2-2 in the Greco tournament and 0-2 in freestyle.

Wrestling in the cadet division, incoming HRVHS freshman Marquez went 2-2 in freestyle and 1-2 in Greco. For Sullinger, a first-year freestyle competitor and incoming HRVHS senior, went 0-2 in the girls junior freestyle tournament. In the 105-pound junior tournament DeHart went 2-2, finishing a win away from placing. DeHart’s finish came after the incoming HRVHS sophomore won the national title in the cadet freestyle division earlier in the week.

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