PORTLAND - Astoria sophomore Chance Banta (215 pounds) faced a familiar foe in the Class 4A wrestling finals taking on Tillamook's Aaron Barichio, who beat him in the Cowapa title bout a week earlier.
Banta seemed to have the advantage in the rematch at Memorial Coliseum, as the wrestlers endured several blood time stoppages and took a scoreless bout into the third period. That meant Banta would take the lead if he could manage an escape in the final two minutes.
He seemed on the verge of doing just that when he quickly moved to his feet, threatening to break loose when Barichio shifted his weight and brought Banta crashing back to the mat. Banta landed on his shoulder before being slowly pulled to his back. Barichio did his best impersonation of a python, methodically wrapping his arms around Banta's upper body and scoring the pin within 20 seconds.
Banta won three matches to reach the finals, including a second-round pin to advance through Friday night's semifinals.
Older brother Cole Banta took third at 189 pounds after winning a 4-2 overtime decision against Newport's Cole Hayner in the third-place final Saturday afternoon.
Cole Banta shot in on Hayner's left leg for a takedown and a 2-1 lead in the opening minute of the match, only to have Hayner tie it up with an escape in the second round. The score remained frozen throughout the third with Banta rolling out of a potential near-fall in the center of the mat before the referee could start a count.
Banta claimed the win with a takedown just 11 seconds into overtime.
He won a pair of decisions in the consolation bracket earlier in the day to gain a spot in the third-place match.