CHEHALIS — Ilwaco’s Serena Kuhn edged Vanessa Bautista of Kalama to win a sub-regional championship Friday, Feb. 7. The victory advances her to Regionals.

After pinning Brittnie Romero (Elma) in semifinals, Kuhn faced Bautista in finals of the 190-pound bracket. Bautista and Kuhn had faced off twice before. Kuhn won their first match in four overtimes, but Bautista won the rematch in a round in which Kuhn hurt her elbow.

In their third meeting, Friday, Bautista took the lead with the first take-down of the match, exploiting an opening when Kuhn tried a move.

“I messed up on a move and gave her two points,” Kuhn said. “After that I got a couple of points on escapes and a couple on stalls.”

At the end of the match, Bautista nearly had the tying takedown. But Kuhn came out on top of her and stayed on top, preventing Bautista’s partial control from ever becoming complete. That allowed her to hang on for the 4-2 victory.

Bethany Martin and Daniella Mendez were both 1-2, falling short of advancing. Mendez fought through sickness.

Kuhn will compete at the regional tournament in Kelso on Saturday, Feb. 15.

Aaron Mead is a sports writer for the Chinook Observer. Contact him at 360-642-8181 or

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