By Jeremy McDonald
ALBANY, Ore.– Kennedy’s Alex Geschwill knew that the pressure was there entering her OSAA Girls Special District 4 Semi-Final match with West Salem’s Samantha Gagnon. No Trojan girls wrestler has gotten to the Big Show, which is the State Wrestling Tournament as the Kennedy junior prepared for her big match that was just minutes away.
A win. History was made. Loss and she’ll have to go through the consolation bracket with additional matches to make history, the dream, a reality. Geschwill went out to the hallway for final preparations for the match ahead while calming the nerves she had.
“Once I let it out, I’m fine. After I get all of my stress out, I’m just like, ‘we are doing this. There is no other option’,” Geschwill describe working through the stress.
When she re-entered the gym where the three mats were. Working her way to mat 3 on the far-end of the room, Geschwill was calm and collected. The nerves were settled as she wanted her turn with a match or two still in front of her and Gagnon. Then it was time.
After a few moments of moving around between the two grapplers, the Kennedy athlete took down the Titan for the first points of the match. Geschwill led 2-0 after the first period. Those first few points proved to be the floodgates swinging open for Geschwill, serving as additional confidence with the 2-0 lead quickly exploding to a 6-0 lead thanks to another quick take-down that she quickly turned into a two-point near-fall.
“Once I got that first take-down, I was like ‘there’s no stopping me’. I know if I could get a take-down, I’m going to do it,” Geschwill said of those first points.
Geschwill didn’t let Gagnon off the hook. Knowing how quickly the tides can turn in wrestling, the Kennedy grappler continued to be on the attack. Eventually pinning the West Salem athlete at the 3:34 mark of the match. Despite her second-place finish in the 120-pound bracket, falling to North Salem’s Mariko Sonis by a tough 5-3 decision, Geschwill punched her ticket to Culver High School for the State Wrestling Tournament while making school history in the process.
“It feels so good. I feel like I’ve worked so hard and it was finally like ‘yeah. I can do that’,” Geschwill said.
Kira Boitano finished sixth in the 105 pound bracket at Saturday’s Regional Tournament at West Albany High School.
Photos By Jeremy McDonald