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Oregon (OSAA) 6A wrestling state championships preview: Newberg and West Linn have ‘separated from the field’

The 6A Oregon high school wrestling state championships take place in Portland. Here's a look at what to expect.

By René Ferrán 

The 6A Oregon high school wrestling state championships take place at Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Portland. Here's a look at what to expect. 

Newberg photo by Taylor Balkom

Top seeds (returning champions in italics)

106 Max Blanco, McNary, jr. 

113 Gage Singleton, Roseburg, jr.

120 Isaac Hampton, Newberg, jr.

126 Moises Lopez, Aloha, jr.

132 Zachary Keinonen, Newberg, jr.

138 Owen Hull, Grants Pass, soph.

145 Gus Amerson, Newberg, soph.

152 Henry Dillingham, West Linn, jr.

160 Chase Dennis, Tigard, sr.

170 Cougar Friesen, Newberg, sr.

182 Justin Rademacher, West Linn, sr.

195 Hudson Davis, Newberg, sr.

220 Alex Decrozuic, South Salem, sr.

285 Cole Steketee, Sprague, sr.

Most state qualifiers

1, (tie) Newberg and West Linn 16. 3, Sprague 14. 4, Sandy 13. 5, (tie) Oregon City, South Medford and Tualatin 12. 8, (tie) Roseburg and Westview 11. 10, (tie) Clackamas, Cleveland, Jefferson, McNary and Mountainside 10.

What to watch

West Linn has first state title in sights against 3-time defending champion Newberg

Last year’s Class 6A state championships brought to mind an old Bill Schonely saying:

It was no longer a question of who, but simply, how much.

Newberg blew away the field with a breathtaking performance, setting an OSAA state scoring record with 148 points and winning six individual titles.

While the Tigers come to Memorial Coliseum favored to win a fourth consecutive championship (including the 2021 OWA title won during the COVID spring season), the margin figures to be closer to the first of their run — when they defeated Roseburg by 48 points at the 2020 meet.

West Linn, which tied for third last year for its first trophy since 2014, has finished second three times (2004, 2007, 2041) but never won a title. The Three Rivers district champion matched Newberg with 16 qualifiers, and first-year coach Kevin Keeney doesn’t shy away from the challenge.

“We have trained all year to be the No. 1 team in the state after finals Saturday night,” Keeney said. “We respect all teams, especially Newberg, but our focus is on us.”

Tigers coach Neil Russo knows his team doesn’t have quite the cushion (21 qualifiers, 17 of whom placed last season) as a year ago, but “we have a solid group of kids that have been there before and some young kids who are anxious and eager to compete on this stage.”

He pointed to his three senior qualifiers — Friesen, Davis and 160-pounder Patrick Negra, who are the only Tigers to have competed at the Coliseum — as leaders of a special group that is ready to defend its title.

“I believe that it is us and West Linn that have separated ourselves from the field,” Russo said. “But the nature of this tournament means there are many programs and individuals that are going to play major roles in the team placing.”

Those teams include Sprague, which is without two-time champion Riley Davis (transferred to Texas) but still has Steketee returning to defend his heavyweight title, and South Medford, which ended Roseburg’s 16-year run atop the Southwest Conference and now hopes to post its first top-10 finish at a state meet.

Rademacher hopes to add first state title to resumé before heading to OSU

One of the most dreaded titles in professional golf and tennis circles is “Best player never to have won a major.”

If Oregon high school wrestling were to have such a title, Rademacher might currently own that crown.

The Oregon State commit has an impressive resumé — a two-time Fargo All-American, a four-time Three Rivers district champion, twice a Reser’s Tournament of Champions winner and possessing a 40-1 record this season (119-12 overall).

While he has twice reached an OSAA state final, both times he lost to an all-time great — Sprague’s Brook Byers (Stanford) as a freshman in 2020 and Davis (Wyoming) last year.

Rademacher gets his final shot this year, and besides being the top seed, the nation’s No. 9 (FloWrestling) or No. 8 (SBLive/Sports Illustrated) wrestler at 182 pounds has not lost to an Oregon wrestler this season.

“Next to Daschle Lamer, I believe Justin has been the most dominant Oregon wrestler this season,” Keeney said. “He has not taken his foot off the gas pedal in his training, and I expect the Coliseum to see the best Justin Rademacher they’ve ever seen this Friday and Saturday.”

Roseburg, Newberg juniors look to stay on track for four-timers club

One of the most highly anticipated potential 1-vs-2 matchups on the board heading to the weekend is at 113 pounds, where Singleton and the wrestler he beat in last year’s final — Clackamas junior Jeremiah Wachsmuth — find themselves on opposite sides of the bracket.

A victory would put Singleton three-fourths of the way toward joining the four-time champions club, as would a third title for Newberg’s Keinonen at 132.

Wachsmuth isn’t the only runner-up looking to get back to the final — and this time, win the gold medal:


106 boys and 100 girls

113 boys and 105 girls

120 boys and 110 girls

126 boys and 115 girls

132 boys and 120 girls

138 boys and 125 girls

145 boys and 130 girls

152 boys and 135 girls

160 boys and 140 girls

170 boys and 145 girls

182 boys and 155 girls

195 boys and 170 girls

220 boys and 190 girls

285 boys and 235 girls