Trio earn bronze in Redmond


by: BILLY GATES/THE PIONEER - Madras senior Ian Oppenlander (right) tries to take down Culver's Billy Smith during a match in the 107-pound class in the Adrian Irwin Memorial wrestling tournament Saturday at Ridgeview High School. Buffs looking to get full roster going after break

Three wrestlers placed for the Madras High School wrestling team at the Adrian Irwin Memorial tournament, which concluded Saturday at Ridgeview High School in Redmond.

White Buffalo head coach Ron Oliver has been operating with a smaller roster the past couple weeks, with kids battling through sickness and family commitments during the winter break, but he said he was pleased with how his guys competed.

“I think we would have done a little bit better if we got better draws, but we did pretty well,” Oliver said. “We had three guys place third, so that was nice.”

by: BILLY GATES/THE PIONEER - Madras' Bryce Vincent works to get top position on Crane's Dustin Ramge during the Adrian Irwin Memorial wrestling tournament Saturday at Ridgeview High School.Ian Oppenlander, Bryce Vincent and Miguel Sevilla all earned bronze medals for the Buffs. Oppenlander, a senior wrestling at 107 pounds, fell in the quarterfinals to Mountain View’s Connor Duhn, but that was the only time he was defeated.

In the consolation bracket, Oppenlander scored two first-round pins and a technical fall to claim third place. He pinned Sisters’ Zach Reid in 13 seconds, and then dispatched Culver’s Billy Smith with a 38-second pin to reach the third-place bout.

In his final match, Oppenlander scored a 17-2 technical fall against Ridgeview’s Tanner Boatman.

This is the first timein his career that Oppenlander is actually at weight in the smallest division. When he began his high school wrestling career as a freshman, he weighed just 76 pounds.

“It’s great to see Ian at the top of his weight class this year; it has been tough for him to do that,” Oliver said. “He’s coming along very well, and he’s a strong kid for his class. We just need to get his confidence level up, and I think he can win a lot more matches.”

Vincent narrowly lost his first match in the 121-pound class, a 9-7 decision to La Pine’s Thorin Wilson, but he went through the consolation bracket with a clean 5-0 mark to take third.

Four of Vincent’s five wins in the consolation bracket came via fall, including a 58-second pin of Bend freshman Chance Beutler in the third-place bout. Vincent pinned Cascade’s Ethan Hiteshew, Culver’s Seth Abbas and Clackamas’ Travis Whittaker. In the consolation semifinals, Vincent defeated Crane’s Dustin Ramge in an 8-2 decision.

“Bryce has been putting in all the time he needs to be successful,” Oliver said. “He comes in during the mornings and works out and does all the extra things that will show up near the end of the season.”

Sevilla missed out on a chance to wrestle for the heavyweight championship after he made just one mistake against Clackamas’ Cole Johnson in the semifinals.

Sevilla dominated the opening portion of the first round, moving Johnson all around the mat, and Sevilla nearly scored a takedown about a minute in. Johnson took advantage of a mistake by Sevilla, however, and tripped the big Buff and sent him on to his back. Johnson quickly closed out the match with a pin at the 1:14 mark.

“Sometimes Miguel just gets going too fast, and I think that’s what happened there,” Oliver said. “He’s a driven kid, and wants to win so bad, but we’ve got to slow him down a little bit. He’s going to be one of our main guys to score points this year, and there’s no reason why he shouldn’t be in the finals for us all the time.”

Sevilla won his next two matches to finish third, both by pin. He pinned Summit’s Trevor Betcher in 20 seconds in the consolation semifinals, and then made quick work of Redmond’s Jacob Brauchler with a pin in 1:37.

Oliver said Sevilla has been one of the team’s most improved wrestlers, especially with his strength and shooting ability.

“Getting the shots down is where a lot of the big guys struggle, but Miguel is doing well with them,” Oliver said. “He needs to get a little better with his feet, but he’s a lot stronger than he was last season. He has been putting in a lot of extra work, too.”

As a team, the Buffs finished with 86.5 points, but once the holidays are over and everyone is back in the wrestling room, Oliver said he’s going to start getting his wrestlers dialed in and prepared for the end of the season tournaments.

“By the new year, we’re going to start making our push,” Oliver said. “We’ll have about two full months to get everyone where they need to be. There won’t be anymore messing around.”

One of Madras’ top wrestlers, Jarred Dupont, was sick and didn’t compete.

The Buffs are back on the mat Saturday at the Free-Berry Invitational in Pendleton.