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Reedsport’s Yesenia Velazquez and Divinity Farris both placed fifth in their weight classes at the girls state wrestling qualifier in Springfield over the weekend, each coming up a few wins short of a spot in the state tournament.

This is the first year girls wrestling is a sanctioned sport by the Oregon School Activities Association and first year girls had to choose between competing in the girls division or against the boys. Last year, both Farris and Velazquez advanced to the regular state tournament, but with Reedsport in a much tougher district this year, opted to try for the girls tournament.

Competing at 120 pounds, in a 16-wrestler bracket, Velazquez opened with pins against Aysiah Candelaria of Sutherlin and Rio Jensen of Philomath to reach the semifinals. But she was pinned by eventual champion Charli Stewart of Bend.

In the consolation semifinals, Velazquez was pinned by Dakota Alewine of North Medford. She bounced back to pin Sweet Home’s Madelyn Neuschwander in the fifth-place match.

Farris was in the 125-pound bracket. Like Velazquez, she was the No. 4 seed, but lost in the first round to Reagan Davis of West Salem.

In the consolation bracket, Farris won a match by forfeit and pinned North Bend’s Madalyn Hampel to reach the semifinals. There she lost by pin to Sweet Home’s Jessy Hart.

Farris pinned Ashland’s Summer Bertrand in the fifth-place match.

Reedsport tied for 14th in the team race out of the 54 schools that had girls competing in the state’s southern region. Sweet Home, which had 11 wrestlers, won the title.

The only two South Coast wrestlers to advance to state were Myrtle Point’s Jordan Blanton at 170 pounds and Brookings-Harbor’s Alexandra Contreras at 140 pounds. Both finished second.

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