"They matched up well with us all the way across the board," Spanish Springs wrestling coach Joe Imelli said. "They have good wrestlers. They did good things. Coming in I thought there was a chance it would be split down the middle at 7-7 and come down to pins, but our kids showed up."
Rito Hernandez got things started for the Cougars in the 138-pound match, earning a second round pin to give SSHS the first six points of the night.
North Valleys battled back in the next match as 145-pounder Taylor Hagar grabbed a 6-5 victory to bring the score to 6-3.
In the 152-pound match, Spanish Springs' Zach Perez got the Cougs back on track with a pin 53 seconds into the first round to leave the score at 12-3.
Not ready to give in, the Panthers earned their own pin at the 160s as Steven Johnson was able to pin Justin Shaffer with just 0:01 remaining on the clock in the second round. The pinfall left the scoreboard reading 12-9 in the favor of SSHS.
With the match still up for grabs, the Purple and Silver took victories at the next three weight classes to seize a 26-9 advantage.
At the 170s, Jake Drescher worked his way to a 16-8 decision for four Cougar points. Tyler Beaulac followed with a second round pin for six more points before 195-pounder Brik Chesley took a 15-5 decision to add four more to the SSHS total.
A first round pin by North Valleys' Luis Gonzalez in the 215-pound match got the Panthers back in the thick of things with the score at 26-15, but Spanish Springs saved its best for last as it won the final six matches of the night to take the team victory.
In the heavyweight match, Chase Hauder answered the NVHS pin with a first round fall of his own. A forfeit then went to Wade Wrenn at 106 for six more points. Ryan Long won an 8-2 decision in the 113-pound match, before Tyler Poalillo (120), Brandon Leyva (126) and Mason Cunningham (132) closed out the night with pins to account for the final 33 points of the match for the Cougars.
"It was kind of a gut check for our guys," Imelli said."we went back to the drawing board a little bit after the McQueen match and said we have to have a better room. It's not just up to the captains, but all the seniors on the team. They stepped up tonight and it's a good win for our program and hopefully we can feed off that a little bit more."