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June 26, 2022

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Trio of Blick brothers from Prairie advance to state wrestling tournament

High schools: Tim Martinez

By , Columbian Assistant Sports Editor
Published:

Four years ago, twin brothers Josh and Caleb Blick weren’t thinking about going out for the wrestling team at Prairie.

“But then (Josh) started wrestling, so I started wrestling,” Caleb said.

Two years later, younger brother Seth joined the program, giving coach Rob Smith a trio of Blick brothers.

“A block of Blicks,” Smith said. “That’s what we call them.”

This weekend, Josh and Caleb hope to go out wrestling with Seth by their side, preferably all with medals around their necks as all three brothers qualified for the 3A state tournament at the Tacoma Dome.

“It’s just great that we have the opportunity to go,” Josh Blick said. “Because going into our senior year, I was worried that we wouldn’t get that opportunity. So I’m glad we do. Even if we don’t get the results we want, we still get the opportunity to do something that we’ll remember for the rest of our lives.”

Having a trio of brothers on the team has been a blessing for Smith, but it also presents some challenges.

“It is an oddity to have three brothers on the team, and it’s even more with two of them being identical twins,” Smith said. “That’s been a struggle for me because they’re so much alike that I can’t tell the difference. Even the wrestling, they wrestle so much alike that it’s sometimes hard to tell.”

The other challenge was finding a spot for all three wrestlers on the Prairie roster, given that all three are of similar stature.

Caleb wrestles at 185 pounds. Sophomore Seth wrestles at 195, while Josh took on the challenge of moving down to 170 – a weight classes loaded with talented wrestlers from the 3A Greater St. Helens League, including top-ranked C.J. Hamblin of Mountain View.

“Josh actually said ‘I’ll take it. I’ll go wrestle 170. It’s fine.’ ” Smith said. “He’s got CJ in that weight class. He’s got Tyler Roggow of Kelso. It’s tough. He didn’t even have a slouch match at the regional tournament. He had to come from behind to beat the kid in the (fifth-place) match. It was a hard-earned victory for him, and a hard road to get to the state tournament.”

Caleb at 185 and Seth at 195 both were assured of advancing to state by reaching the third-place matches in their classes Saturday at the regional tournament in Sammamish.

However, Josh at 170 had to win his final match for fifth place to reach the Tacoma Dome, rallying for a 6-4 win over Max Perry of Ingraham.

“Yeah it was a close match,” Josh said. “I was sad that it came down to that, but I’m glad that I got through.”

For sophomore Seth, wrestling at 195 is not an ideal weight, but he made it work.

“It’s OK because I’ve always kind of been bigger than them,” Seth said of his older brothers before going up on his toes. “Not taller yet, but eventually.”

Smith said it’s more of a process of elimination.

“Seth was just the one who was like ‘Can’t be him (Josh). Can’t be him (Caleb). Going up!’ Smith said. “He probably won’t be a 195-pounder next year. But he understood from the program standpoint, the team standpoint that we preach all the time, that he needed to make a sacrifice because the team had a spot to fill. So Seth accepted that challenge, and he’s done quite well.”

The Blick brothers enjoy challenging each other in practice every day. Josh and Caleb are training partners, and Seth often will rotate in as well.

“It gets scrappy sometimes,” Josh said.

Caleb added: “We want to push each other, but at the same time, we want to be better than the other person. So pushing each other makes us better.”

And the hope is that all three will be pushed onto a podium come Saturday at the Tacoma Dome.

“We want for all three of us to place and get our names up on the wall there,” Caleb said, pointing to plaques on the wall of Prairie’s wrestling room. “We want to get the trio up there. That would be nice.”

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