By Mike Cooper
Can first-year Edmonds-Woodway High School wrestling coach Brian Alfi lead the Warriors to a repeat of last year’s success?
Three E-W state placers graduated, including 130-lb. state champion Ryan Deweese. Even with Deweese, second-place finisher Mac Hutchison and third-place finisher Andrew Vulliet all graduating, Alfi says, “I think we should have a competitive lineup this season in Wesco South. The wrestlers want to keep building on the tradition of Edmonds and are working hard towards winning their third league title in the last four years.”
Leading the Warriors’ line-up is junior Matt Cuzzetto, who placed eighth in state last year and also went to state as a freshman. Cuzzetto is slated to compete at 145 lbs. this year. Other returnees anchoring a solid E-W squad are sophomore Noah Cuzzetto at 106 lbs. and senior Zach Perez at 170 lbs. Noah Cuzzetto went to state last year as a freshman and Perez is a two-time state wrestler.
Another wrestler to keep an eye on is 285-lb. junior George Johanson, who placed second in Wesco as a sophomore.
The Warrior line-up is rounded out with many other grapplers returning from last year’s varsity, including 138-lb. sophomore Nathan Vulliet, 160-lb. senior captain Collin Natterstad, 120-lb. junior Mark Hood and 170-lb. junior Marq Brown.
The Warriors are off to a strong start with both tournament and dual-meet success. Their only dual meet loss was to defending 4A state champion Lake Stevens, who is favored to win the Wesco North. The Warriors have a big rivalry meet Monday, Dec. 12 when they host Meadowdale at 7 p.m. in the Great Hall, know as the “Warrior Pit.” Although a 3A school, the Mavericks are always tough when they take the mat against Edmonds-Woodway.
Former Edmonds Mayor and Edmonds High School wrestler Mike Cooper will be providing regular reports on the Edmonds-Woodway High School wrestling program’s 2011-12 season. Cooper also announces many of the matches and provides Twitter updates via @EWmatvoice.