Wa-Hi's Eric Eastman advances to wrestling championships

Eric Eastman takes third in the 189-pound division at the regional meet Saturday in Richland.

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Wa-Hi's Eric Eastman (top) during the regional wrestling meet in Richland. Eastman finished third at 189 pounds to advance to Mat Classic this weekend.

RICHLAND - Wa-Hi's Eric Eastman was the lone Blue Devil to advance to the Mat Classic wrestling championships at the Tacoma Dome out of the regional tournament Saturday at Richland High.

Eastman compiled a 3-1 record and placed third in the 189-pound division.

The top three finishers advanced to the state tournament.

Ryan Harmon, at 145 pounds, finished in sixth place with a 1-3 record. Harmon was wrestling with an injured right thumb.

Dustin Taylor, at 125 pounds, and heavyweight Gerald Maib both lost their first two matches and did not place.

"This was one of the toughest regional tournaments I have seen," Wa-Hi coach Clayton Hudiburg said. "There are state-caliber wrestlers and even returning state placers that will not be competing next weekend at the state tournament."

Eastman was an alternate at the state tournament last year.

"I am happy for Eric," Hudiburg said. "He has definitely earned his spot, but it is bittersweet. There was more dream-breaking than dream-making today. It is always tough when the hard work doesn't pay off for everybody."

University won the regional team competition with 219 points, followed by Moses Lake (179), Wenatchee (108), Mead (101), Central Valley (64), Kamiakin (60), Davis (59.5), Richland (57), Pasco (51), Ferris (50), Eastmont (38), Chiawana (38), Southridge (36), Kennewick (21), Wa-Hi (21), Eisenhower (13), Lewis & Clark (10) and Gonzaga (0).

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