Celtic singlets at state

Max Blanco lifts Sprague’s Elijah Ezpeleta on Feb. 2, at McNary High School. (JOSHUA MANES/Keizertimes)

When the OSAA State Wrestling Championships gets underway on Thursday, Feb. 23, the McNary Celtics will have 11 in attendance representing the blue and white.

There are 10 Celts and one Lady Celt taking part in the state tournaments, held Feb. 23-25 at Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Portland.

Max Blanco comes in as the top-seed at 106 pounds. Blanco finished the season with a record of 18-3, as he looks to improve on his third place finish at last year’s state championship.

Blanco has a bye in the first round, and will face the winner of the first round match between Ryan Muzii of West Linn High School and Theodore Vohs from Roosevelt High School.

Joining Blanco at 106 pounds is Pedro Shay Vega, who was 19-13 this season. Shay Vega faces sixth seed Nathan Higa from Grants Pass High School in the first round.

The Celts have a pair of wrestlers at 113 pounds and 126 pounds as well.

Derek Jones, who was 11-8, and Joseph Barros II, 17-9, compete at 113 pounds. Jones faces Isiah Stanturf from Roseburg High School while Barros is paired with Tristan Mancia of Century High School.

At 126 pounds are Leo Gonzalez and Liam Koenig. Gonzalez went 10-9 on the season, Koenig 10-14. Both Gonzalez and Koenig have first round byes.

Donovon Garcia (138) finished 15-8 this season, and will face Roberto Perez of Tualatin High School in round one, with Logan Medford of Cleveland High School waiting in round two.

Isaiah Manzo (145) has a first round bye before a matchup with either Dylan Gore from Mountainside High School or Tagge Fry from Grants Pass High School.

Also with  first round byes are Anthony Thomas (152) and Josh Friesen (170).

Thomas will face Noah Morris from Mountainside or Kaden Miller from South Medford High School in the second round.

Friesen is the third-seed at 170 pounds, and the only other male Celtic wrestler other than Blanco that won at the Central Valley Conference division championships. Friesen is matched up with either Sebastian Garriott of Beaverton High School or Bricen Stewart from Sheldon High School.

The only female wrestler from McNary at the state championship is Ali Martinez (190). Martinez finished the season 38-2, her only losses coming against out-of-state competitors. She comes in as the two seed, and will face Natalia Solorio-Campos from Hood River Valley High School in the first round.