Sherwood's Halen Jolley takes second, while Ryan Jurgens and Andrew Rice place third at the tourney

by: DAN BROOD - THE VICTOR -- Sherwood sophomore Halen Jolley puts his hands in the air following his semifinal win at the Class 5A state tournament.PORTLAND — Halen Jolley sure had his share of wins at the Class 5A state wrestling tournament.

In fact, the Sherwood High School sophomore had three impressive victories on his way to reaching the finals of the 113-pound weight class.

But, even before stepping onto the mat, Jolley flashed the smile of a champion.

“I don’t think of it as winning,” Jolley said after scoring a 7-3 decision win over Churchill’s Jorrin Ishihara in a state tourney semifinal match. “If I train hard and also do the best I can, then I’m a champion no matter what.”

In addition to being a champion in his heart, Jolley also came oh so close to being recognized as a state champion, as he placed second in the 113-pound division — being edged by just one point in the state title bout — at the tournament held Friday and Saturday at Veterans Memorial Coliseum.

Jolley is just one of the Bowmen that stepped up at the state tournament. Sherwood senior Andrew Rice, at 160 pounds, and senior Ryan Jurgens, at 195, each had third-place finishes at the event.

“Things are looking real good for us,” Jurgens said. “It was a good tournament for the team.”

It certainly seemed to be a good tournament for Jolley.

The Bowmen sophomore, who was the No. 2 seed at 113 pounds, opened the event by picking up a disqualification win over Eagle Point’s Ivan Valle in a first round match.

In the quarterfinals, Jolley posted a 10-1 major decision win over Austin Reed of Silverton.

That put Jolley in the semifinals against Ishihara, the No. 3 seed.

In the moments prior to that match, Jolley had a smile on his face as he got ready to take on Ishihara.

“I’m happy to be here,” Jolley said afterward, explaining his smile. “I worked all year for this. I know I worked harder than everyone. I run and practice every day.”by: DAN BROOD - WINNING SMILE -- Sherwood senior Andrew Rice is all smiles after his win over Sandy's Spencer Barnett Saturday at the state tournament. Rice loss to Barnett the week before at the NWOC district tourney.

That work ethic seemed to pay off in the semifinal bout.

Jolley took a quick 2-0 lead in the match with a takedown coming with 1 minute and 45 seconds left in the first round. Ishihara countered with an escape, cutting the lead to 2-1 with 1:33 left in the round. But another Jolley takedown, this one coming with 1:09 left in the period, gave the Sherwood sophomore a 4-1 lead going into the second round.

Neither wrestler was able to score in the second round, leaving Jolley with a three-point lead going into the third round.

But, nine seconds into the final round, Ishihara scored on a takedown to trim the lead to 4-3. But that didn’t seem to bother Jolley.

Jolley answered Ishihara’s takedown with an escape and then a takedown of his own on his way to getting a 7-3 decision win.

“The kid was strong, and quick on his feet,” Jolley said. “But I knew what to defend against him.”

In the 113-pound state championship match, Jolley faced top-seed Andrew Nelson of Lebanon.

Nelson took a 2-0 lead with a takedown coming with 41 seconds left in the first round. Jolley scored on an escape with 16 seconds remaining in the second round, cutting Nelson’s lead to 2-1 and setting up a dramatic third round.

Jolley tied the match at 3-3 with a takedown coming with 47 seconds left in the match. But Nelson came up with an escape with 31 seconds remaining, giving him a 4-3 lead.

Jolley wasn’t able to come up with a go-ahead takedown in the final seconds, leaving Nelson with a 4-3 win and the stat title.

Jolley wasn’t the only Bowmen boasting a smile during the state tournament. Rice had a big smile on his face after placing third at 160 pounds.

“This is huge for me,” he said. “My goal was just to place, so even to get to the third-place match was really good. It took all I’ve got.”

Rice opened the tournament with a 9-3 decision win over Jacob Thompson of Summit. In the quarterfinals, Rice was edged 8-6 by Cleveland’s Kyle Hammond.

But the Sherwood senior came back strong in the consolation bracket. First, he scored a 23-11 major decision win over Kyle Weseman of Hood River Valley.

In the consolation third round, Rice faced Sandy’s Spencer Barnett in a rematch of a Northwest Oregon Conference district tournament championship match. At the NWOC tournament, Barnett, who was awarded four penalty points throughout the match, got a 7-5 decision win.

by: DAN BROOD - RYAN'S HOPE -- Sherwood High School senior Ryan Jurgens is in charge in his 195-pound consolation semifinal match against Wilsonville's Justin Hamilton. Jurgens got a major-decision victory. In Saturday’s rematch, Rice, scoring on a second-round escape, took a 1-0 lead into the third round. Barnett tied the match with an escape midway through the third round. But Rice got a takedown with 13 seconds remaining to go up 3-1. Barnett got an escape with six seconds remaining to make the final score 3-2.

“That’s a good victory,” Rice said. “He’s actually a good guy.”

In the consolation semifinals, Rice got a 3-1 decision win over Gavin Carroll of Churchill. Once again, Rice game through late in the match, getting the winning takedown with just three seconds left in the final round.

In the 160-pound third-place match, Rice got a 9-3 decision win over top-seeded Scotty Dunagan of Dallas. Rice held a 5-0 lead after the first round of that match and then wrapped up the win with a pair of third-round takedowns.

“It’s nice to end on a high note, with a win,” Rice said. “My coaches helped me the whole way, and my brother (former Sherwood standout Danny Rice) gave me a real good warm-up before the matches.”

For Jurgens, his third-place finish marked an improvement from a year ago, when he placed fourth at state at 195 pounds.

“It’s better than last year,” Jurgens said. “I definitely didn’t want a lower placing this year.”

Jurgens opened his tournament by pinning South Albany’s Anthony Sutherlin in just 26 seconds in a first-round bout.

In the second round, he won by fall in 1:29 in a match against Joseph Linebarger of The Dalles.

In Saturday’s semifinal round, Jurgens fell to West Albany’s Jackson Soto by a 14-4 major decision score.

“It was rough against Soto,” he said.

But Jurgens came back strong.

In the consolation semifinals, Jurgens scored a 15-3 major decision win over a familiar foe, Wilsonville’s Justin Hamilton, who Jurgens beat in the NWOC district title match a week before. In the state tourney rematch, Jurgens had one three-point nearfall in the first round and two more in the third round on his way to getting the victory.

In the 195-pound third-place match, Jurgens found himself facing an early 2-0 deficit, as Eagle Point’s Ethan Pomeroy scored on a takedown 17 seconds into the first round. But Jurgens came back with a reversal with 1:15 left in the opening round, and then he pinned Pomeroy with 49 seconds remaining in the round to wrap up third place.

“That was tiring,” Jurgens said of his busy Saturday. “But it was worth it.”

Other Sherwood wrestlers found some success at state.

Sophomore Jess Hatfield, at 126 pounds, freshman Cameron Allender, at 132, and senior Martin Layna, at 220, each picked up a victory at the tournament.

Also wrestling for Sherwood at the state event were junior Hayden Koprowski at 120 pounds and senior Garret Heckenberg at 145.

Sherwood finished in ninth place in the team standings at the state tournament with 70 points.

Hermiston claimed the Class 5A state team championship with a score of 174.

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