Tuifua, Librado lead Whalers to 4th at 'Snowtown'
Sione Tuifua and Anthony Librado wrestled their way to gold medals on Saturday and, in the process, helped carry the Barrow Whalers to a fourth-place finish at the annual Throwdown in Snowtown tournament in Valdez. One of 12 teams participating in the meet, the Whalers rolled up 123.5 points and finished just one-half point behind Grace Christian for third.
Wasilla claimed the 'Throwdown' championship with 171.5 points. Houston was a distant second at 157.5.
Tuifua was among the tournament's most dominant grapplers. Competing in the 220-pound championship, he posted a perfect 5-0 record. After opening the meet with a quick win over Redington's Kyler Rumfelt, Tuifua quickly pounded out back-to-back wins over Houston's Shawn Graham and Galena's Isaak Larson. Both wins came in less than two minutes.
With his win over Larson, Tuifia advanced to the semifinals to face off with Galena's Ethan McGinty. He posted a win at the 19-second mark of the match.
In his final match, he picked up a forfeit victory from BHS teammate Ben Heather, who placed third in the 220-pound standings despite being unable to wrestle in his final two matches.
Like Tuifua, Librado made easy work of the 113-pound title. He turned in a 3-0 record, including a quick victory over Palmer's Brianna McKeel in the championship bout. His win over McKeel came at the 1:07 period.
The Whalers also collected a trio of second-place efforts. Vakameilalo went 3-1 in the 285-pound division and finished second to Houston's Dylan Jackson. Jalen Tracey finished second in the 195-pound standings after turning in a 3-2 record, while Bradley Brower finished second in the 145-pound division.
Brower suffered a sudden victory loss to Wasilla's Ethan Kraus in the title bout.
Bilal Zafar also did well for Barrow, finishing fifth in the 170-pound standings.
Other Whalers competing in the tournament included Krystian Gandia, Jay Rick Nobleza, Eve Negovanna and Matthew Brower.
Throwdown in Snowtown
Final team standings
Grace Christian 124
Holy Rosary 28