Lynden's Hailie Holestine wrestles an opponent from Rogers High School in the opening round of the Viking Invitational at Puyallup High School. (Hailey Palmer/Lynden Tribune)

Also, junior Holestine keeps improving

PUYALLUP — Lynden girls wrestling, traveling south Saturday to the Viking Invitational at Puyallup High School, placed 10th out of 32 teams, highlighted by first place for junior Betty Briceno in the 145-pound weight class.

Other Lynden wrestlers to place were junior Hailie Holestine, who placed second at 130 pounds; junior Hannah Kayser, sixth at 235 pounds; and freshman Olivia Castaneda, second in the 140B-pound weight class. 

Lynden coach Santos Gallegos said he was pleased with how the Lions competed. 

“We have a really young team,” he said. “I have three seniors and only one of them is wrestling right now. That’s not a bad placing for having such a young team. I’m pretty happy.”

Gallegos said Holestine wrestles in one of the toughest weight classes and the competition just keeps getting better for her.  Yet she is wrestling exceptionally well.

“Her record is phenomenal,” the coach said. “We went to wrestle in Othello and her bracket was just state placer after state placer. She has a good record and she’s still a young wrestler.”

On Briceno’s first-place finish, Gallegos said she had a hard start to the season battling an injury, so seeing her finish first couldn’t have made him happier. 

“She’s recovering from an injury, but she’s just wrestling awesome,” he said. “She had a really phenomenal day yesterday.”

The Lions have one more regular-season meet scheduled for Wednesday against Everett at 6 p.m. After that, it’s time to get ready for sub-regionals and the rest of the postseason.

Gallegos said he wants his team to put in some work during that time, but to also ease up a bit.

“I would like to see them just taking some time to heal up,” he said. “The last two weeks of the season is the most important trying to get that mental toughness built up.” 

Bellingham United, the combination of Bellingham, Sehome and Squalicum, placed sixth as a team and Blaine placed 19th.