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Preston Echeverria beats crosstown rival for Hillsboro’s first TOC title since 2016 (Reser’s TOC 190 pounds)

“I knew I could win here. I just had to put in the work.”

A year after Preston Echeverria became the first member of his family to win a state wrestling championship, the Hillsboro senior 190-pounder notched another first for his family Saturday night — winning a Reser’s Tournament of Champions gold eagle.

Echeverria’s 11-4 decision over Houstyn Lee-Perry in the senior’s home gym at Liberty High School in Hillsboro ended an eight-year title drought for the Spartans, whose invitational in the late 1990s morphed into the tournament that celebrated its 22nd edition last weekend as the state’s premier in-season event. 

“This means a lot, because I knew I could win here,” said Echeverria, who reached the TOC 182 final last season before losing to West Linn’s Justin Rademacher. “I just had to put in the work.”

Preston Echeverria of Hillsboro (photo by Taylor Balkom)

Preston Echeverria of Hillsboro (photo by Taylor Balkom)

Even though Echeverria and Lee-Perry attend schools in the same district, Saturday’s title bout was their first meeting. 

“You know, it’s great to wrestle new people. You learn a lot,” said Echeverria, who broke a 2-2 tie with an early reversal in the third period, then scored two takedowns and three near-fall points to put away the match.

The best part for Echeverria? He now has something else he can hold over his older brother, Sebastian, and cousin Jaden.

“Oh yeah,” Preston said, chuckling. “All day.”

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