Tiger grapplers host tourney

By Observer staff December 05, 2012 01:39 pm

The Muilenburg wrestling tournament returns Friday at La Grande High School.

Around 20 teams from all over the region will compete in what has become one of the state’s premier wrestling tournaments.

Last season the Muilenburg featured 20 teams and 330 entrants

“It’s a good tournament, and I think word is getting around about it,” LHS coach Klel Carson said.

“The competition level is so good. If you win the Muilenburg, you’re a tough wrestler.”

The Tigers opened the season with a team victory at the Estacada Tournament Saturday, finishing with 246.5 points.

LHS travels to Nyssa tonight for its first dual of the season.

If the Tigers can replicate their performance from Estacada, or even come close, it may be enough to get a win this weekend.

Last year Sam Barlow placed first with 294 points and Oregon City came in second at 205.

Carson didn’t want to make any predictions about how his team may fare this weekend, but he did say the team is ready to get back on the mat.

“We’re looking forward to it. It’s a real high level of competition. I think good things will happen if the kids keep working like they have,” he said.

A young La Grande squad finished in third place last season at the Muilenburg, placing Tyler Isaacson (113 pounds), Cole Rohan (106) and Cody Shafer (220) in the finals.

All three wrestlers had to settle for second place.

But Isaacson, who also placed at the tournament two years ago, along with Rohan, are both back this season and will look to take that extra step up the podium.

The Muilenburg Invite is named in honor of Brian Muilenburg, a 1976 graduate of La Grande High School who died in a tragic auto crash in August 1978. 

Muilenburg was a Tiger grappler who went on to wrestle collegiately at Oregon State University.

The action is scheduled to kick off at 5 p.m. Friday and will continue at 9 a.m. Saturday.

All matches are at the La Grande High School gymnasium.