BY ZACH EWING Californian staff writer email@example.com
UPDATED, 6:22 p.m.: Just got word that finals will begin at 160 pounds and then go straight through 152 to end the night with Coleman Hammond against Kyle Perreault. Here are team scores entering the finals, and then I'll flip it over to a new thread for the finals.
1. Clovis 185; 2. Buchanan 149; 3. Bakersfield 128.5; 4. Clovis West 90.5; 5. Porterville 84; 6. Lemoore 80.5; 7. Frontier 74; 8. Wasco 70; 9. Selma 56; 10. Central 55.5; t11. Clovis East and Madera 40; 13. Firebaugh 37; 14. Clovis North 32; 15. Monache 28.
UPDATED, 6:14 p.m.: Here are the final medal-match results. I'll have a new thread for the finals.
182 third place: Jackson Grout, Buchanan, dec. Jose Robledo, Wasco, 6-3
182 fifth place: Dillon Harroun, Tehachapi, inj. def. Ritchie Brandt, Bullard
182 seventh place: Juan Jimenez, Dos Palos, dec. Carlos Montejo, Frontier, 9-3
182 ninth place: Nathan Mesa, Woodlake, dec. Nathaniel Vivanco, Firebaugh, 3-1
195 third place: Josh Bailey, Frontier, inj. def. Nick Kidd, Bakersfield
195 fifth place: Jaccob Lopez, Ridgeview, inj. def. Josh Karam, Clovis North
195 seventh place: Young Woo An, Buchanan, inj. def. David Padilla, Dinuba
195 ninth place: Enrique Carranza, Corcoran, dec. Jaime Galvan, Mt. Whitney, 5-3
220 third place: Hexton Coronado, Clovis, dec. Marcus Ponce, Central, 2-1
220 fifth place: Augie Alcantar, Frontier, dec. Chris Figueroa, Mendota, 8-3
220 seventh place: Peter Mendoza, Madera South, pins Paul Vandegriff, Liberty-Madera Ranchos, 2:57
220 ninth place: Joseph Valles, Hoover, dec. Adrian Garza, Lemoore, 5-3
HWT third place: Robert Barrios, Sierra Pacific, pins Joey Alvarez, Selma
HWT fifth place: Kai Dill, Buchanan, inj. def. Garret Johnson, Wasco
HWT seventh place: Christian Garcia, Reedley, dec. Anthony Anaya, Corcoran, 4-3
HWT ninth place: Gabriel Rosas, Ridgeview, dec. Shaq Garret, Bakersfield, 5-3 2OT
UPDATED, 6:07 p.m.: One of the final medal matches out is the ninth-place Cinderella match between Ridgeview's Gabriel Rosas and Bakersfield's Shaq Garret. Can the Drillers get a 10th qualifier, or will Ridgeview have two? The other Cinderella wrestler for Kern County, Frontier's Aaron Gomez, was pinned for ninth place at 145, so he's left with Adam Bracamonte waiting on Oakland Section results. As it is now, the winner of this heavyweight match will be Kern County's 27th state qualifier.
It's scoreless, late first period. Rosas tries a half-hearted single, but Garret kicks free. Stalling called on Garret with 15 seconds left in the first. Scoreless to the second. Garret on bottom, and he gets out after about 45 seconds for a 1-0 lead. No more action in the second. Rosas down for the third. Look out. Garret rolling with Rosas, and he gives up the reversal. Looked like it might have been worse for a minute, but it's 2-1 Rosas. Garret needs another escape to tie this up. Still 1:15 left.
Garret gets out and it's 2-2. 40 seconds left. Remember, Garret has the stall warning on him, which could loom large in this match. Both guys get hit for stalling, and it's 2-2 going into OT — wait a minute! Garret just launched a beauty of a double-leg, but the takedown came just after the whistle! Whoa. Garret should try that more often. Instead, we have OT and more head-fighting. Final seconds of OT then. We'll have double OT. Garret down first. He's quickly to his feet and away in just four seconds. Restart now. A takedown would still be huge for either guy, probably a winning move at this point. Garret shoots again, and this one is wild. Wow. Fool's gold from the one at the end of regulation. So Rosas takes a 4-3 lead with one 30-second period to go. Garret is in pain again, the same wrist/forearm he hurt in the pigtail match. So Rosas down, and Garret has to turn him or let him go and hope for his own takedown. Rosas gets out, and he leads 5-3 with 22 seconds left now. Garret tries a shot but it gets nowhere. This one is going to end as a 5-3 victory for Gabriel Rosas of Ridgeview. Two state qualifiers for the Wolf Pack is a nice haul. Bakersfield settles for nine of 10 qualifiers.
At 160, Buchanan's Yusuf Robinson wins ninth place, so the Bears qualify all 13 that they brought here for state. Clovis will qualify 12 of 13, with Caleb Trace at 138 not making it through.
152 third place: Ivan Govea, Firebaugh, pins Gregory Pagela, Porterville, 2:29
152 fifth place: Dominic Kincaid, Clovis, dec. Teddy Thomson, Buchanan, 9-6
152 seventh place: Ryan Escalera, Selma, inj. def. Miguel Ruiz, Madera
152 ninth place: Miguel Ferrer, Caruthers, dec. Chris Moran, Sanger, 11-6
160 third place: Brody Brand, Clovis, inj. def. Michael Wright, Dinuba
160 fifth place: Keanu Morin, Selma, inj. def. Josue Terrones, Washington Union
160 seventh place: Kyle Shepherd, Frontier, dec. David Jepsen, Central, 8-2
160 ninth place: Yusuf Robinson, Buchanan, dec. Mason Temple, Liberty-Madera Ranchos, 3-1
170 third place: Alex Gamboa, Madera, pins Nick Callender, Clovis East, 3:24
170 fifth place: Javier Reyes, Buchanan, def. Adrian Hernandez, Kennedy (prior result)
170 seventh place: Jaime Martinez, Lemoore inj def. Ryan Holmes, Stockdale
170 ninth place: Edgar Segura, Mendota, dec. Isaac Rangel, Firebaugh, 3-1
UPDATED, 5:48 p.m.: I'm trying to get my ducks in a row for the newspaper story tomorrow, which will focus mostly on the finals, but I'm trying to keep half an eye on the medal round, which is rapidly moving. I'll keep typing results below as I get them, for one thing.
Got to hand it to Buchanan: They just seem to get better and better at every weight. Even a guy who's out-classed by an opponent makes him work harder every time to win. I wouldn't be surprised if they hang around at state next week, even though the Bears don't have that top gun who can earn surefire points in Rabobank (my guess, for instance, is that Bakersfield finishes ahead of Buchanan next week because the Drillers have five guys in Fierro, Hammond, Hodges, Martin and Pope who could reach the quarterfinals and beyond. Buchanan is short on those guys. But Troy Tirapelle and his staff have done a marvelous job getting the once-proud Bears program back to elite status, and they'll be a factor for years: Eight of the guys they have alive in this tournament, are freshmen or sophomores, according to The Fresno Bee's Nick G—not gonna try to spell your last name, Nick.
132 third place: Abel Contreras, Porterville, pins Ozuna, Frontier, 3:43
132 fifth place: Adrian Panduro, Corcoran, def. Xesus Velarde, Clovis (prior result)
132 seventh place: Antonio Gutierrez, Bakersfield, dec. Chris Lane, Clovis West, 9-2
132 ninth place: Aaron Mora, Firebaugh, pins James Valenzuela, Madera, 3:54
138 third place: Matt Ontiveros, Central, pins Ralph Pena, Selma, 1:47
138 fifth place: Abner Romero, Buchanan, def. Nathan Pimentel, Dos Palos (prior result)
138 seventh place: Christian Rodriguez, Reedley, dec. Rosario Sanchez, Sanger, 8-4
138 ninth place: Dominic Lopez, Lemoore, dec. Paul Reyna, Yosemite, 11-8
145 third place: AJ Fierro, Bakersfield, dec. Jorge Perez, Edison, 6-3
145 fifth place: Conner Francis, Buchanan, inj. def. Isaac Garcia, Madera
145 seventh place: Isidro Arroyo, Reedley, dec. Izzac Suarez, Dos Palos, 4-3
145 ninth place: Kyle Jones, Exeter, pins Aaron Gomez, Frontier, 1:04
UPDATED, 5:36 p.m.: I need to offer some quick congratulations to Chavez's Anissa Rodriguez (98 pounds), Arvin's Angelica Llanes (103) and Selma's Amber Quintana (122), who have all reached the state championship final at the CIF Girls Wrestling State Championships over in Lemoore. This is the third year of the tournament, and a Kern County girl has never won a state title. So Rodriguez and Llanes have a chance to be the first.
Here, Frontier's Kyle Shepherd is crusing to seventh place at 160 pounds. He won't be thrilled with his weekend, but there's nothing wrong with just getting through this tournament in seventh, and Shepherd did enough, including a win over Buchanan's Yusuf Robinson.
126 third place: Josh Sibayan, Monache, dec. Josh Hokit, Wasco, 10-7
126 fifth place: Armand Molina, Firebaugh, dec. Ruben Garcia, Selma, 11-5
126 seventh place: Dean Esquibel, Buchanan, dec. Lane Barnes, Clovis, 5-3
126 ninth place: Elijah Jimenez, Clovis North, dec. Adam Bracamonte, East, 4-2 OT
UPDATED, 5:20 p.m.: I'll start to print official medal-match results as we go and I've got each weight completed. Interesting seventh-place match at 132 between Clovis West's Chris Lane and Bakersfield's Antonio Gutierrez, two freshmen. Last week in the Yosemite quarterfinals, Lane was dominating the match when he used an illegal slam and had to default. That injured Gutierrez, who defaulted out and really only got into this Masters at the last minute (the original brackets this morning had him scratched). Now they have a rematch for seventh place, and Gutierrez just got a second-period takedown before the buzzer for a 2-1 lead. He'll be down for the third, too. You'd have to consider this an upset if he gets it done.
The first Kern County participant in the ninth-place Cinderella match is East's Adam Bracamonte, who's facing Clovis North's Elijah Jimenez. They're scoreless through a period.
A reversal and now nearfall for Gutierrez, who has looked stronger as the day has gone on with that shoulder. He leads 7-1, now 7-2 after an escape by Lane, but Gutierrez ends strong with a takedown and takes seventh place.
An escape for Jimenez of Clovis North gives him a 1-0 lead over Bracamonte. Quite a few scrambles in the second period after that, but no points, and it's 1-0 headed to the third. Jimenez breaks Bracamonte down immediately, but now Bracamonte working his way around. He has a reversal and a 2-1 lead. Jimenez escapes, and it's 2-2 with about a minute to go. State on the line for these guys. Bracamonte a near taekdown but they're out of bounds. Now Jimenez tries to lock up a leg and the head, but time runs out first. Great match, 2-2 headed to overtime. A takedown means state for either of these guys — and Jimenez will get it within 10 seconds! Heartbreak for East's Bracamonte, unless he's one of the lucky 10th-placers who gets a bid from the Oakland Section.
Just noticed at 120 that a lucky alternate from last week, Monache's Seth Hood, lost his ninth-placer 6-2 to Kingsburg's Jonas Tirado. So Hood would need a forutnate break again to get into state. Tough postseason for him.
106 third place: Joey Cisneros, Redwood, dec. Matt Gamble, Monache, 5-4
106 fifth place: Julian Gaytan, Clovis, pins Carlos Herrera, Bakersfield, 2:46
106 seventh place: Javier Jimenez, Porterville, maj dec. David Campbell, Lemoore, 13-3
106 ninth place: Chris Cisneros, Selma, pins Jose Licea, Caruthers, 3:49
113 third place: Khristian Olivas, Clovis, dec. Greg Gaxiola, Buchanan, 3-0
113 fifth place: A.J. Rosas, Reedley, maj. dec. Marco Velasquez, Foothill, 10-1
113 seventh place: Alex Orosco, Edison, tech fall Isaiah Torres, Redwood, 19-4
113 ninth place: Joseph Jauergui, Clovis East, pins Noel Ramirez, Kingsburg, 1:34
120 third place: Jonas Gaytan, Clovis, dec. Daniel Ruiz, Madera, 6-4
120 fifth place: Jason Delacruz, Buch, def. Brenden Thomas, Corcoran (prior result)
120 seventh place: Nick Marquez, Foothill, dec. Arik Onsurez, Bakersfield, 7-0
120 ninth place: Jonas Tirado, Kingsburg, dec. Seth Hood, Monache, 6-2
UPDATED, 5:06 p.m.: They're wrestling on all six mats, so it's very difficult to keep track of all of the action here, but right in front of me is a 120-pound seventh-place match won by Foothill's NIck Marquez, 7-0 over Bakersfield's Arik Onsurez. Both are through to state, so this one not a crucial result, but it re-affirms Marquez's place in the pecking order above Onsurez right now.
We have team scores through the semifinals. Buchanan didn't the consolation bounce it did in Madera last week, at least not yet, and at this point, this is a race for second place behind state No. 1 Clovis:
1. Clovis 169; 2. Buchanan 127; 3. Bakersfield 125.5; 4. Clovis West 90.5; 5. Porterville 78; 6. Lemoore 77.5; 7. Wasco 70; 8. Frontier 67; 9. Central 51.5; 10. Selma 47; 11. Clovis East 38; 12. Madera 36; 13. Clovis North 32; 14. Firebaugh 29; t15. Monache and Washington Union 26.
UPDATED, 4:55 p.m.: So here we go with the medal rounds, only about 2 1/2 hours late. It's OK, who doesn't want more wrestling? We'd just be sitting here waiting for the finals otherwise, though it looks like those will start about half an hour late by my reckoning. Mt. Whitney AD John Perez also confirmed it looks like we'll have a late start time as they need to clear the gym after this round.
Now, any medal match is something to watch at a tournament this deep, but the ones to really keep an eye on here are the ninth-placers. That's where the final state qualifier in each weight will be decided. There is a chance the 10th place finisher coudl get in, too, but that's probably only going to be the case in three or four weights, if past history holds to form from the Oakland Section.
Anyway, the first ninth-placer is Chris Cisneros of Selma against Kerman's Anthony Errecart in a rematch of last week's SS final won by Cisneros. He has a 2-0 lead here, too.
In other matches, it's Matt Gamble of Monache wrestling Redwood's Joey Cisneros for third, Bakersfield's Carlos Herrera against Clovis' Julian Gaytan for fifth and Lemoore's David Campbell vs. Porterville's Javier Jimenez for seventh.
Gamble leads Cisneros 2-1 after a period, and Jiemenz has a 2-0 edge on Campbell. Gaytan and Herrera are scoreless. But now Gaytan locks up a cradle on top and Herrera is in trouble. Pin comes at 2:46, so Gaytan takes the CS-5 spot at state next week. Takedown for Cisneros and escape for Gamble tie up the third-placer, 3-3. A reversal in the third period for Chris Cisneros give him a 4-0 edge on Errecart. He'll finish it off and nab the last spot at state at 106.
Jimenez has turned Campbell and now leads 9-3 in the seventh-place match.
Escape for Gamble to begin the third gives him a 4-3 lead on Joey Cisneros. But Cisneros is going to get a takedown with less than a minute left for a 5-4 lead. Can he hang on? He couldn't against Adrian Camposano earlier today in an OT loss int he semis, but he will here. Gamble is upset for the second time today and settles for fourth. Good tournament for Joey Cisneros.
UPDATED, 4:38 p.m.: At heavyweight, three of those 10 Kern County wrestlers are going at it, with Shaq Garret of Bakersfield facing Sanger's Jesus Marez and North's Mark Guerrero and Ridgeview's Gabriel Rosas duking it out. The Garret-Marez match is scoreless after a period.
Garret is on a far mat so I can't follow the action too well, but there's a stoppage there. Garret is holding his arm, hurt in some way, but he's pinned Marez and is in the ninth-place match. We'll see how he does in it with whatever injury he sustained, but he is in it. Rosas of Ridgeview gets a second-period takedown to take a 2-1 lead on Guerrero of North. It'll be an all-Bakersfield ninth-place match either way. It's 2-1 after two, and Rosas gets an escape in the third to make it 3-1. Guerrero will need a takedown here.
Rematch of last week's SS divisional final in the heavyweight consolation semifinals, and it looked like Selma's Joey Alvarez again beat Wasco's Garret Johnson, but this time it looked like it wasn't such a tight match.
Rosas finishes off Guerrero, 3-1. So he'll face Garret for ninth place.
UPDATED, 4:30 p.m.: I'm back, but my brackets haven't been updated since I left. We're still wrestling through consolation semifinals and ninth-place pigtails in the upperweights right now. I'll try to get updated brackets and join the action for the medal matches. We're going to push that 6 p.m. start time back for finals, I'm guessing. Nothing official yet, but I don't see how they can finish all these consolation matches, clear the gym and set up the finals mat in an hour and a half. Just not going to happen.
Kern County has 26 confirmed state qualifiers and 10 still around in these ninth-place pigtails. Shafter's Eric Torres just lost to Mt. Whitney's Jaime Galvan, so that's one of the 10 gone. Surely there's more; I just haven't been here to see them. Anyway, I'm re-caffeinated and ready to go with the medal matches in the next 15 minutes or so.
UPDATED, 3:40 p.m.: Here's team scores through the semifinals. Clovis has pulled away a bit, just like last week, but expect Buchanan to narrow the gap considerably with consolation matches. That's what happened last week, and I see no reason why it can't happen again. Bakersfield probably doesn't have enough left in the consolations to keep pace, though Buchanan might not be able to repeat a lot of its close victories from a week ago.
1. Clovis 145; 2. Buchanan 113; 3. Bakersfield 108.5; 4. Clovis West 90.5; 5. Lemoore 73.5; 6. Porterville 65; 7. Wasco 58; 8. Frontier 54; 9. Central 37.5; 10. Selma 32.
Looking ahead to tonight's finals: The only guy in the finals who wasn't in the finals at either Madera or Shafter last week is Buchanan 106-pounder Durbin Lloren, who upset Matt Gamble in the semifinals. Eight of the finals are direct rematches from last week's Yosemite Divisional, and five are the Yosemite champ against the Sierra/Sequoia champ.
Again, I'm taking a break here to grab some caffeine and a bit to eat somewhere, but I'll be back soon, hopefully in time for the medal matches in about half an hour.
UPDATED, 3:32 p.m.: I'm going to go on a little break here in a minute, but I'll try to get updated team scores through the semifinals first. Wrestling right now are consolation semifinals and ninth-place semifinals. The former are all guys who are already in state and are wrestling for position, either third, fourth, fifth or sixth. The latter are guys who are on the brink of elimination. They need to win to get into the ninth-place match, which will be to determine the final state qualifier from our section. In some cases — usually three or four — both wrestlers in the ninth-place match will get in if the Oakland Section doesn't have a qualifier who has won a varsity tournament outisde of the Oakland Athletic League. But you obviously don't want to count on that if you're wrestling for ninth. And in any case, the losers of these ninth-place pigtails are done for the year. So seasons on the brink here.
As we wait on team scores, here are the finalists per team: Clovis, Clovis West and Bakersfield, 4; Lemoore 3; Buchanan, Wasco and Porterville 2; 1 each: Central, Exeter, Frontier, Kingsburg, Clovis East, Clovis North, Washington Union.
UPDATED, 3:15 p.m.: Past 3 and still in the semifinals here, so I'd say it'll be at least 5 p.m. before we can break for the finals.
At 220, Clovis West's Cortes Morales is already into the semifinals with a quick pin of Central's Marcus Ponce, who was a surprise semifinalist. Morales will face Wasco's Sean Medley in all likelihood. Medley gets two quick takedowns of Clovis' Hexton Coronado for a 4-1 lead and now has him turned. No pin, but three nearfall for 7-1. Coronado gets out for 7-2, and that's how the first period ends. Medley chooses neutral for the second and works another takedown — it took him longer this time, but when it comes, it's a powerful thing. Coronado slams down to the mat. Now Medley gets another takedown and hooks the legs in. He decides against riding, though, and lets Coronado go again. 11-4 the score, late second.
At heavyweight, first semifinal is Buchanan's Kai Dill against Lemoore's Jonathan Roa. Didn't see much of it, but it appears, Roa wins by pin early in the second period at 2:12.
He'll get a rematch with Clovis' Nick Nevills, assuming the national No. 2 can take care of Wasco's Garret Johnson in the other semifinal. Johnson is a big body, and he's proving difficult for Nevills to move thus far. Scoreless late in the first.
Not much action in the third period at 220. Coronado's escape made it 11-5 and he's not letting Medley get much from neutral. Or Medley has turned his motor down a bit. Coronado gets hit for stalling once, and Medley nearly gets a takedown for the major late, but time runs out first. 11-5 the final, and Medley will take on Morales tonight.
Back at heavyweight, Nevills can't score in the first period, but he gets an escape and a quick takedown in the second for a 3-0 lead. Johnson up for 3-1, but there's another takedown. Nevills begins his routine of toying here. Escape Johnson for 5-2, takedown Nevills for 7-2. Wash. Rinse. Repeat, and it's 9-3 after two periods. In the third, Nevills decides to go in for the kill, and the pin comes at 4:38. His shape is superior to the field's, much like the rest of his repertoire. So Nevills vs. Roa again tonight.
Up next are consolation semifinals and ninth-place semifinals, in which the first wrestlers of the day will (finally) be eliminated.
220 semifinals: Cortes Morales, Clovis West, pins Marcus Ponce, Central, 1:04
Sean Medley, Wasco, dec. Hexton Coronado, Clovis, 11-5
HWT semifinals: Nick Nevills, Clovis pins Garret Johnson, Wasco, 4:38
Jonathan Roa, Lemoore, pins Kai Dill, Buchanan, 2:12
UPDATED, 3:02 p.m.: In the other 182-pound smeifinal, nearly a takedown for Buchanan's Jackson Grout of Bakersfield's Kyle Pope, but they go out of bounds first. Restart, and there's the takedown for Pope for a 2-0 lead. He tilts Grout and collects three nearfall points, but his grip fails, and Grout is around for a reversal and a 5-2 deficit. Pope to his feet, but Grout rides the ankle back to the mat.
At 195, the favorite, Clovis' Matt Weiss, has a takedown of the upstart, Ridgeview's Jaccob Lopez, who has been a pinning machine. But Weiss is so technically good, and now he's adding nearfall. He leads 6-0, turns Lopez again, and there's the pin. Weiss at another level from Lopez at this point, but Lopez only a sophomore, so he'll have his chance.
Back at 182, Pope has his escape and it's 6-2. Grout down in the second and escapes for 6-3. Grout trying to push action here, figuring that Pope still doesn't have 100 percent of his shape after injuries and illnesses have taken their toll on his senior year. But Pope still playing good defense right now and maintains a 6-3 lead into the late stages of the second. There's a stalling call on Pope, who now will go to work off the restart. He shoots, but Grout has the wizzer and time is dwindling. Pope finishes with about 5 seconds to spare. And Grout is flexing his right leg, hurt. It's 8-3 Pope, and now he'll get a chance for a blow, too. But let's hope Grout is OK.
The other semifinal at 195 is Bakersfield's Nick Kidd against Washington Union's Gabriel Gonzalez, the state No. 8. Gonzalez hopes to get his shot at Weiss tonight, and he has a takedown in the first for a 2-0 lead after one on Kidd.
Back to 182. Grout appears to be OK, and we'll keep going into the third. 8-3 lead for Pope. Now another stoppage with blood time for Grout. Buchanan coaches noticably rushing to get Grout back out there. They know Pope's weakness right now is his shape. But only 1:06 left here, and Pope is getting a nice breather. Here we go, just over a minute to go. Pope hanging in there, not giving Grout anything easy. More blood time. Buchanan's master plan here went awry because Pope is getting breaks.
At 195, Gonzalez turns Kidd and now leads 4-0. He gets a reversal to begin the third for a 6-0 lead. Now Gonzalez has Kidd turned and looks for the pin. Got it at exactly 5:00.
20 seconds left at 182. Grout continues to push action, but Pope won't give him position. Restart at 14 seconds. More blood, and Grout is in pain. He has a gash on his forehead it looks like that's bothering him. Just 8 seconds left. Grout continues to push it but nothing there, and it's an 8-3 victory for Kyle Pope. He'll get Adrian Salas tonight after defaulting in the final last week. Still doesn't look well, by the way. Really sucking wind over there.
182 semifinals: Adrian Salas, Clovis, dec. Ritchie Brandt, Bullard, 9-2
Kyle Pope, Bakersfield, dec. Jackson Grout, Buchanan, 8-3
195 semifinals: Matt Weiss, Clovis, pins Jaccob Lopez, Ridgeview, 1:52
Gabriel Gonzalez, Washington Union, pins Nick Kidd, Bakersfield, 5:00
UPDATED, 2:49 p.m.: Bryce Martin runs away from Nick Callender of Clovis East in a 13-3 final for the Drillers. The Yosemite Division champ will get either Madera's Alex Gamboa or Clovis North's Austin Flores in the final; he pinned Flores last week in the final and beat Gamboa in the semifinals, 11-2 if memory serves me. Right now Gamboa and Flores are scoreless late in the first, but Flores is going to get a late takedown for a 2-0 lead heading to period No. 2.
We're also under way at 182, where state No. 1 Adrian Salas of Clovis gets Bullard's Ritchie Brandt. Takedown Salas, but nothing else cooking in the first period, so 2-0. Brandt is down in the second period.
Back at 170, Flores clinging to a 4-3 lead after an escape for Gamboa late. Gamboa with an injury timeout here, but he's ready to go. 38 seconds on the clock. A takedown could win it for either guy. Flores shoots, wary of getting called for stalling, but nothing comes of it. 20 seconds. Gamboa has to work. He shoots, but it's wild. There's the shot. Can he corral Flores? He tries, and he ... didn't get him! One toe out of bounds, and the refs wave off the takedown. They're talking now, but they won't give it. JUst two seconds left, and that'll be it. Flores hangs on by the skin of his teeth for a 4-3 victory.
Escape and takedown in the third for Salas, who now leads Brandt 5-0. He adds a couple more TDs and wins 9-2.
170 semifinals: Bryce Martin, Bakersfield, maj dec. Nick Callender, Clovis East, 13-3
Austin Flores, Clovis North, dec. Alex Gamboa, Madera, 4-3
UPDATED, 2:36 p.m.: At 152 pounds, state No. 2 Coleman Hammond of Bakersfield would love a rematch with Clovis East's Kyle Perreault, but both guys have to get there first. Hammond is on his way with two first-period takedowns of Porterville's Gregory Pagela and a 4-1 lead, and Perrault has two TDs and a 4-2 lead on Firebaugh's Ivan Govea in the other semi. Now Perreault gets the headlock and takes Govea to the floor. Whoa. That was powerful, even though it won't result in a pin. Three nearfall and Perreault leads 9-2 after a period.
Hammond in the second period flips Pagela quickly from top. Boom, pin, just 12 seconds into the second. Hammond will have his rematch, barring a big comeback from Ivan Govea in the other semifinal. Perreault has a takedown and an 11-3 lead now.
At 160, expect another lopsided result from Lemoore's Isaiah Martinez against Clovis' Brody Brand. Brand is no scrub, but Martinez is treating him like one, leading 16-4 after a period that began with a painful-looking takedown that thudded Brand's face to the mat.
Perreault continues to surge back at 152, leading 15-4 into the final minute. He gets a takedown and will win, 17-4.
Martinez is also done after an escape and a takedown to begin the second. That's a 19-4 tech fall.
The other semifinal at 160 is Bakersfield's Hunter Hodges against Selma's Keanu Morin. Hodges gets a first-period takedown and leads 2-1 after one.
Hodges' teammate, Bryce Martin, is up 2-0 at 170 pounds against Clovis East's Nick Callender. He's now working a tilt for a 4-0 lead midway through the first.
Escape for Morin to tie Hodges 2-2, but now Hodges gets another takedown for 4-2. Escape Morin makes it 4-3. Third period now. Hodges escapes and gets a takedown for 7-3. He's just a bit technically better than Morin, and it shows. Now a nice double-leg that thuds Morin to the mat, and it's a 9-3 lead for Hodges. Morin escapes, but Hodges adds one more takedown for an 11-4 victory at 160. He'll get the pleasure of wrestling Martinez again in the finals.
OK, so I have to apologize: Back at 145, that was Clovis West's Tyler Zimmer getting the 5-2 decision over Edison's Jorge Perez. Chris Garcia of the Golden Eagles got the injury default over Matt ONtiveros of Central back at 138. My mistake. I've corrected the semifinal results below to reflect that.
152 semifinals: Kyle Perreault, Clovis East, maj. dec. Ivan Govea, Firebaugh, 17-4
Coleman Hammond, Bakersfield, pins Gregory Pagela, Porterville, 2:12
160 semifinals: Isaiah Martinez, Lemoore, tech fall Brody Brand, Clovis, 19-4
Hunter Hodges, Bakersfield, dec. Keanu Morin, Selma, 11-4
UPDATED, 2:19 p.m.: Martin Sandoval has taken control of his semifinal with Buchanan's Abner Romero and now leads 11-0 misway through the third period. A bunch of nearfall included in that. In the other semifinal, it's a 2-0 lead for Chris Garcia of Clovis West against Central's Matt Ontiveros. This was a quarterfinal last week in Madera, with Garcia winning by pin. Here, Ontiveros gets the escape to cut the lead to 2-1.
Easy win for Sandoval. Didn't see the final score, but he was up big.
Garcia, meanwhile, has an escape and now another takedown in the second period for a 5-0 lead. Escape Ontiveros, but it's 5-1 through two. Ontiveros will be down in the third.
At 145, Bakersfield's AJ Fierro gets Clovis' Jason Ladd. He didn't get a shot at Ladd last week because the Cougar reached the final, but both guys lost to champion Tyler Zimmer of Clovis West in close matches. Ladd's loss in the finals came in overtime. They're scoreless after a first period with a lot of handfighting but nothing close to a takedown.
Back at 138, Ontiveros has some blood time, still trailing 5-1 with 1:02 left. He works an escape off the restart for 5-2 but needs a takedown in a hurry here. Not happening, though. Garcia's defense too good, and he'll get the rematch he wanted with Porterville's Sandoval in the final tonight. 5-2 final.
Escape for Ladd to begin the second period, and the Clovis senior leads the Bakersfield senior 1-0. Now Ladd with a nice shot. Fierro trying to fight it off, but there's the two for Ladd, and in the process of fighting, Fierro got himself locked in a nearside cradle. He's stuck! At 3:27. Unexpected result there in what had been a close match to that point. Ladd reaches the final, where he could get a rematch with Tyler Zimmer, who has Edison's Jorge Perez in the other semifinal. Not sure what happened there, though, because they're already onto 152. Could be an injury default?
138 semifinals: Martin Sandoval, Porterville, maj. dec. Abner Romero, Buchanan
Chris Garcia, Clovis West, inj. def. Matt Ontiveros, Central
145 semifinals: Tyler Zimmer, Clovis West, dec. Jorge Perez, Edison, 5-2
Jason Ladd, Clovis, pins AJ Fierro, Bakersfield, 3:27
UPDATED, 2:08 p.m.: An exciting consolation match at 126 has Wasco's Josh Hokit tied 3-3 after two with Clovis' Lane Barnes. Hokit is down for the third. Hokit gets the escape and now a takedown for a 6-3 lead. He'll add another takedown and win it, 8-7.
In the 132-pound semifinals, check out Frontier's Izaiah Ozuna with the first takedown of state No. 2 Javier Gasca of Kingsburg. Now Ozuna has a tilt and a 4-0 lead. Long way to go, obviously, but a nice start for Ozuna. Now an escape and quick takedown for Gasca, who tech falled Abel Contreras in the last round. Gasca lets Ozuna up and then takes him down again to get back to 5-5 with 30 seconds left in the period.
The other 132-pound semi has Buchanan's Kyler Hansen working for a pin of Corcoran's Adrian Panduro. Doesn't get it, but he has a 5-0 lead after one.
Ozuna with a late reversal in the first, and he leads 7-5. Upset brewing? Ozuna will have to keep the high-scoring Gasca from getting points in bunches to hold on. Gasca down in the second and escapes. Now a lightning-quick shot, and Gasca has his first lead, 8-7. He lets Ozuna up for 8-8 but takes him down again. The Kingsburg Viking doing work now. Another let-up for 10-9. Ozuna is going to need to get one of his own if he's going to stay in range here, but Gasca's shot is too fast. Another takedown for 12-9 and now Ozuna on his back. Three nearfall for 15-9. Got him again, and that's a pin. Wow 3:21, and a relatively quick pin once Gasca got going. Ozuna comes out strong but fades quickly there.
Hansen has stretched his lead to 9-0. If he's improved as rapidly as the rest of Buchanan's team, Hansen might challenge Gasca tonight. I believe that was an 11-0 final for Hansen.
Semifinals have started at 138, with Porterville's Martin Sandoval taking on Buchanan's Abner Romero (yet another Bears freshman, by the way). Sanodval takes a 2-0 lead through a period.
132 semifinals: Kyler Hansen, Buchanan, maj. dec. Adrian Panduro, Corcoran, 11-0
Javier Gasca, Kingsburg, pins Izaiah Ozuna, Frontier, 3:21
UPDATED, 1:59 p.m.: A schedule update: We're running well behind here. I'm thinking the medal matches wont' be done till close to 5 p.m., which leave only an hour break before the finals, rather than the three hours that was scheduled. These semifinals might not be over till 3, which is when the medal matches were supposed to be done, and then you've still got consolation semifinals, ninth-place semis, and then medal matches.
Anyway, we'll continue to enjoy the wrestling in the meantime. At 126, the two big favorites are doing work, with Clovis West's Michael Knoblauch looking for a first-period pin of Firebaugh's Armand Molina. He won't get it, but he has a 7-1 lead with three late nearfall points. Meanwhile, Frontier's Vincent Gomez has been relentless in the first minute against Monache's Josh Sibayan, with two takedowns and a ride-out for a 4-1 lead after one. Takedown for Gomez early in the second for 6-1, and now he looks for the turn. Stoppage in the Knoblauch-Molina match. Not sure what the reason is, but now they're back to it, with a Knoblauch takedown for a 10-2 lead. Gomez has taken his foot off the gas a litlte bit. He doesn't add points but hangs on for a relatively comfortable 6-2 victory over Sibayan, who gave him trouble last week. Knoblauch, meanwhile, wins 13-2. These guys are clearly the best in their weight class in the section; wonder if they'll prove that's the case in the state next week, too.
126 semifinals: MIchael Knoblauch, Clovis West, maj. dec. Armand Molina, Firebaugh, 13-2
Vincent Gomez, Frontier, dec. Josh Sibayan, Monache, 6-2
UPDATED, 1:49 p.m.: State No. 1 Mason Pengilly of Porterville has a takedown about 1:20 into his 120-pound semifinal with Buchanan's Jason Delacruz. He leads 2-0. The other semifinal here is Madera's Daniel Ruiz against Exeter's Arnulfo Olea.
Pengilly gets a second period escape to make it 3-0, but another Buchanan wrestler is hanging tough where some might not expect it. Delacruz refuses to give up a Pengilly leg that is going to keep it 3-0 going to the third.
On the other mat, a 4-0 lead for Olea on Ruiz. Olea is a wild card in this weight, particularly after he handled Jonas Gaytan 7-2 in the quarterfinals. He could perhaps push Pengilly tonight in the finals if these results hold.
Delacruz chooes neutral in the third but gives up the takedown to Pengilly after a brief scramble. 5-0 now for Porterville, and blood time for Delacruz.
Third period in Olea-Ruiz. Ruiz has the legs in on top and is trying for a turn that could change this match. Ruiz riding well here, but Olea won't give anything up, and he keeps his 4-0 lead. Now Olea will escape, and here comes a late takedown for what will turn into a 7-0 victory. Exeter's Olea is wrestling well; what will he have for Pengilly tonight?
Pengilly, meanwhile, works a tilt in the final minute to push his lead to 8-0. Neither of these guys is going to give up a point in their semifinal, which should make for a pretty good final tonight.
120 semifinals: Mason Pengilly, Porterville, maj. dec. Jason Delacruz, Buchanan, 8-0
Arnulfo Olea, Exeter, dec. Daniel Ruiz, Madera, 7-0
UPDATED, 1:40 p.m.: Sean Williams of Lemoore continues to lead Buchanan's Greg Gaxiola, another rapidly improving freshman for the Bears, 3-0 in the 113-pound semifinal. No matter what happens here against the senior Williams, Gaxiola and Lloren are proof that Buchanan, led by Troy Tirapelle, is quickly becoming a force worthy to rival Troy's dad, Steve, at Clovis. The onus is on the rest of the section, in particular Bakersfield High, to keep pace. Buchanan has a lead in the team race at this moment, by the way; the Bears trailed Clovis by just a point following the last round, and Lloren's win at 106 will put them over the top for the moment.
The other 113 semifinal is Clovis' Khristian Olivas against Wasco's Isaiah Hokit, the state No. 6 (Williams is No. 3, by the way, with St. John Bosco's terrific Zahid Valencia at No. 1 in the state and nation). Hokit has the first takedown on Olivas and a 2-0 lead. He rides out the first period to keep it that way. Now second period, Hokit down, and he fights to his feet. Brought back down, but now Olivas in bad position and Hokit has a reversal for a 4-0 lead. Olivas escape to get within 4-1, but period getting late now. Hokit nearly had another TD, but Olivas fights it off. Period ends with Hokit up 4-1.
In the other semifinal, a third-period takedown for Williams makes it 5-0 over Greg Gaxiola into the final minute. He'll finish it by that score.
Olivas escapes and pulls within 4-2 and still 1:30 to go. Takedown would tie this one up. Olivas shoots but gets nowhere, and now Hokit has the front headlock.Time running low for Olivas. Out of bounds with 15 seconds. Hokit playing it safe, keeping his legs away from Olivas. Final five seconds and Olivas tries to finsih, but Hokit won't give it up. He'll win, 4-2 and get into the final against Lemoore's Sean Williams.
Back at 106, Bakersifeld's Carlos Herrera did indeed get a big 8-1 consolation win over Lemoore's David Campbell.
113 semifinals: Sean Williams, Lemoore, dec. Greg Gaxiola, Buchanan, 5-0
Isaiah Hokit, Wasco, dec. Khristian Olivas, Clovis, 4-2
UPDATED, 1:31 p.m.: Semifinals have begun. At 106, that's Monache's Matt Gamble against Buchanan's Durbin Lloren and Central's Adrian Camposano against Redwood's Joey Cisneros. Camposano has two first-period takedowns for a 4-1 lead on Cisneros. Gamble-Lloren is scoreless through a period, with Lloren taking a 1-0 lead with a second-period escape. Now Lloren works a nice wizzer for a takedown and a 3-0 lead. Escape Gamble, who's certainly the favorite here. He's down 3-1, final 30 seconds of the second.
In the consolation bracket at 106, Bakersifeld's Carlos Herrera has a 4-0 lead on Lemoore's David Campbell in what would be a reversal from the seventh-place match last week. Winner of that consolation round are into the top six and will wrestle semifinal losers next.
Another takedonw for Camposano extends his lead to 6-2. Escape Cisneros for 6-3. In the other semi, we're into the third with Gamble escaping for a 3-2 deficit. Last minute here, and Gamble desperately trying for the go-ahead takedown. He wont' get it, and that's a big-time 3-2 victory for the freshman Lloren, who has come up huge the past two weeks for the Bears.
The other semifinal just got really interesting, too: Cisneros finishes a takedown near the edge for a 7-6 lead on Camposano! 25 seconds left there, as Central coaches argue it shouldn't have been two. As usual, the ref wins the argument, so Camposano will need an escape in th final seconds here. He can't get it, because Cisneros is hanging on his foot. Stalling against Cisneros, but that's only the first warning. Boy, what a match. Now Central coaches want a point for another stall, and they're going to get it, with 2 seconds left. Now Redwood's turn to argue. As it stands, it's 7-7 with 2 seconds left. Probably means OT. It does. Cisneros with a big comeback here to force the extra session. Can Camposano gear it back up? He gets the shot from his knees, and there's the takedown. Double fist pump from Camposano, who had to work a lot harder than he thought he would there.
Up at 113, top seed Sean Williams of Lemoore has a 2-0 lead on Buchanan's Greg Gaxiola.
Check out these team scores through the previous round in what's become another interesting team race: 1. Clovis 80; 2. Buchanan 79; 3. Bakersfield 58.5; 4. Clovis West 41.5; t5. Lemoore and Porterville 37; 7. Frontier 35; 8. Wasco 30; 9. Central 26.5.
Total confirmed state qualifiers right now, with that ninth-place slot still available: Clovis 12, Buchanan 12, Bakersfield 9, Frontier 6, Lemoore 5, Wasco 5
HWT state qualifiers: Joey Alvarez, Selma; Anthony Anaya, Corcoran; Christian Garcia, Reedley; Robert Barrios, Sierra Pacific
106 semifinals: Adrian Camposano, Central, dec. Joey Cisneros, Redwood, 9-7 OT
Durbin Lloren, Buchanan, dec. Matt Gamble, Monache, 3-2
UPDATED, 1:18 p.m.: Another Kern County state qualifier is the only guy here from STockdale, Ryan Holmes, who works a quick 26-second pin of Mendota's Edgar Segura to get into state.
Josh Bailey finishes off a victory at 195 over Mt. Whtiney's Jaime Galvan, so last week's finalist is into state. Another Titan, Augie Alcantar, trying to join him at 220. He's facing Madera's Kyle Mask and nearly has a takedown in the first period, but they're ruled out of bounds. Second period scoreless. Alcantar on top. He's got Mask in a half-nelson, and that's a strong boy. But Mask fights off his back. No pin for Alcantar, but a 3-0 lead, and it'll stay that way through two periods.
At heavyweight, North's Mark Guerrero is out there with a tough assignment in Selma's Joey Alvarez. Both trying for throws in the first period, but nothing doing yet. Also scoreless through a period at heavyweight is Ridgeview's Gabriel Rosas against Corcoran's Anthony Anaya.
Back to Alcantar after Mask took an injury timeout. Alcantar is out and now up 4-0 with about 1:40 to go. Mask doesn't appear to have the strength to really finish anything against Alcantar, and now Alcantar has the takedown to Mask's back. Look out though! Mask gets a reversal and puts Alcantar on his back! Whoooa. Alcantar was ahead 9-0 when that happened. He fights off his back and gets to his feet and now leads 10-5 with just 30 seconds left. Alcantar is a wild card, because he's so talented and strong, but he's inexperienced too. Mask almost caught him and sent him to the ninth-place bracket. But Alcantar will survive and win, 10-5. Lesson learned, there, I'm guessing.
Also at heavyweight, Bakersfield's Shaq Garret out there trying to make it 11-for-11 for the Drillers into state. He's wrestling Reedley's Christian Garcia. Selma's Alvarez has taken control of North's Guerrero with an 8-3 lead, but Rosas of Ridgeview and Corcoran's Anaya are 1-1 in the third period. Garret and Garcia are scoreless after a period. Garret on botttom in the second period, trying to work up. It takes him a minute, but he's got the point and a 1-0 lead. Meanwhile, a late takedown in the third for Anaya gives him a victory over Ridgeview's Rosas.
Now the last match of the round is Garret vs. Garcia. Garcia gets a quick third-period escape to tie it 1-1. He appears to have an advantage from referee's position, so Garret would love to get a takedown and win it that way. He's got 1:40 here, plus another minute in the first overtime if it comes to that. But neither guy seems willing to push the action here. Down to 30 seconds to go in the third. Garret is really strong if he can get a throw locked up, but Garcia hasn't let that happen. Now we go to overtime. Early action for Garcia, who has Garret backing up. Takedown just before they go out, and Garret is dumped into the ninth-place bracket. So Bakersfield 10-of-11 for qualifiers thus far.
We're running about an hour behind schedule, but semifinals are next.
170 state qualifiers: Jaime Martinez, Lemoore; Javier Reyes, Buchanan; Adrian Hernandez, Kennedy; Ryan Holmes, Stockdale
182 state qualifiers: Jose Robledo, Wasco; Juan Jimenez, Dos Palos; Dillon Harroun, Tehachapi; Carlos Montejo, Frontier
195 state qualifiers: Josh Bailey, Frontier; David Padilla, Dinuba; Eric An, Buchanan; Josh Karam, Clovis North
220 state qualifiers: Augie Alcantar, Frontier; Peter Mendoza, Madera South; Chris Figueroa, Mendota; Paul Vandergriff, Liberty-Madera Ranchos
220 state qualifiers:
UPDATED, 12:59 p.m.: Tehachapi's Dillon Harroun trying to secure a spot at state against Clovis East's Dejon Taylor at 182 pounds. Frontier's Carlos Montejo also out there against Woodlake's Nathan Mesa, and Wasco's Jose Robledo has a 2-0 lead on East's Michael Avila. Busy weight for Kern County, with Kyle Pope already through as a semifinalist.
Back at 170, Kennedy's Adrian Hernandez in a battle with Bullard's Kalvin Stuckey, 2-2 after two periods.
Harroun has an early takedown on Taylor and leads 2-1 after a period. Montejo and Mesa are scoreless after one, and Robledo has opened up a 7-0 lead on Avila.
Escape for Stuckey and now a takedown, so he takes control at 5-2. Another takedown for Harroun at 182 gives him a 4-1 lead on Clovis East's Taylor. That leaves Montejo-Mesa as the close one right now. Still sooreless in the second, with Mesa in bottom.
Whoa — Kennedy's Hernandez just escaped, took down Stuckey and pins him at 5:34. What a turnaround in that third period after it looked like Stuckey had taken control. So the Thunderbirds get what I believe is their first state qualifier in school history.
Escape for Mesa to take a 1-0 lead on Montejo. That's how the second period will end, with Montejo on bottom for the third. Taylor has an escape to pull within 4-2 of Harroun entering the third period. Robledo just punched Wasco's fifth ticket to state with a 10-1 victory over East's Avila. Escape Taylor in the third and he's within 4-3. Still more than a minute left there. Montejo has his escape to tie the match 1-1. He was looking for more but couldn't get the reversal. There's a takedown for Harroun and he's getting nearfall, too. There's the pin for Tehachapi's Harroun at 5:19, and he's into state. Near takedown for Mesa near the edge of the circle, but Montejo fights it off. Still 1-1 with just a few seconds left in regulation. Woodlake coach arguing that it should have been 2, but he wont' get his way. We go to overtime. Stalling warning against Mesa, otherwise not much going on in the OT. Double OT time. Montejo with an escape to make it 2-1. Now Mesa down. Montejo needs to ride for 30 seconds for the win. Mesa to his feet. Montejo struggling to bring him back down, but time is wasting. Out of bounds with 6 seconds and a chance here for Montejo. Can Mesa come up quickly? He tries the swtich instead, and Montejo is going to hold on for the 2-1 win. Titans coach Kirk Moore jumps in the air. He's got another qualifier.
At 195, both Liberty's Jacob Heinsohn and Frontier's Josh Bailey have early leads in their consolation matches. Kern County mostly rolling right now in the upperweights. Now Buchanan's Peter An is coming back on Heinsohn, who had a big lead. It's 8-5 Heinsohn through two. Now An an escape in the third and a takedown to Heinsohn's back. He's pinned with 14 seconds left! Heinsohn had a big lead, and he's crushed. He had state in his grasp and let it get away. Still another chance for the Patriot, but a lot of work to do now.
152 state qualifiers: Ryan Escalera, Selma; Dominic Kindcaid, Clovis; Teddy Thomson, Buchanan; Miguel Ruiz, Madera
160 state qualifiers: Josue Terrones, Washington Union; Kyle Shepherd, Frontier; David Jepsen, Central; Michael Wright, Dinuba
UPDATED, 12:42 p.m.: Aaron Gomez of Frontier on mat at 145 and down 2-0 early to Dos Palos' Izzac Suarez. Looking to become a first-time state qualifier. Suarez out in the second period for a 3-0 lead, and now a quick shot for 5-0. Gomez looks like he'll have to do it in the ninth-place bracket if he's going to make state.
Back at 132, Xesus Velarde is Clovis' 11th state qualifier after a pin against Centennial's Alex Treiberg. If Caleb Trace and Dominic Kincaid can win in this round, the Cougars will be 13-for-13 and be poised for a third straight state championship next weekend. Buchanan, by the way, has eight of its 13 Masters wrestlers through to state right now, and like Clovis and Bakersfield, nobody yet who has dropped down to the ninth-place bracket. The big teams come here and take care of business, and this year is no different thus far.
But here's news: Trace loses to Selma's Ralph Pena at 138, so he is in ninth-place trouble. Nobody has been eliminated yet, but guys who lose in this round have lost thei rmargin for error and must win a four-man bracket for ninth place to reach state.
Kincaid is in complete control of Lemoore's Angel Robles at 152, so the Cougars look like they've got 12 of 13 in for sure, with Trace the question mark right now.
Tough match up at 160 with Frontier's Kyle Shepherd, the section No. 6, taking on Buchanan's Yusuf Robinson, who's ranked No. 4. The state rankings have it the other way, with Shepherd No. 12 and Robinson only ranked No. 28. The loser here will become the favorite for ninth place, but neither wants to go that route. Looks like Shepherd is taking care of business. A takedown midway through the second period extends his lead to 6-2. Robinson wrestled well last week in Madera but appears to not quite have the same burst today. We'll go to the third period with Shepherd leading 6-2. Now a reversal makes it 8-2. Looks Shepherd is ready to punch his ticket to state. Now I think he works the pin — I didn't see it, but they're raising his hand already.
132 state qualifiers: Abel Contreras, Porterville; Antonio Gutierez, Bakersfield; Xesus Velarde, Clovis; Chris Lane, Clovis West
138 state qualifiers: Ralph Pena, Selma; Christian Rodriguez, Reedley; Nathan Pimenetel, Dos Palos; Rosario Sanchez, Sanger
145 state qualifiers: Isaac Garcia, Madera; Izzac Suarez, Dos Palos; Conner Francis, Buchanan; Isidro Arroyo, Reedley
UPDATED, 12:24 p.m.: Antonio Gutierrez of Bakersfield beats Dos Palos' Jesus Valdes at 132 pounds, becoming Bakersfield's ninth state qualifier. The Drillers came here with 10, so the only piece of that puzzle remaining is heavyweight Shaq Garret. Gutierrez was wrestling without the shoulder wrap that time, by the way
Jonas Gaytan becomes qualifier No. 9 for Clovis with a decision against Monache's Seth Hood. Hood got the lottery ticket into Masters as an alternate, but he's going to have to win the ninth-place bracket to have a chance now. Up next will be Centennial's Etienne Armijo, who's at risk after losing to Foothill's NIck Marquez, your latest Trojans state qualifier with a 6-1 victory.
Lane Barnes is qualifier No. 10 for Clovis with a tough win at 126 over Clovis North's Elijah JImenez, 4-2. The Cougars came here with 13, so they're edging towards getting them all through, too.
120 state qualifiers: Jonas Gaytan, Clovis; Nick Marquez, Foothill; Brenden Thomas, Corcoran; Arik Onsurez, Bakersfield
126 state qualifiers: Josh Hokit, Wasco; Lane Barnes, Clovis; Dean Esquibel, Buchanan; Ruben Garcia, Selma
UPDATED, 12:15 p.m.: I believe Carlos Herrera finished off Chris Cisneros at 106 pounds to give Bakersfield a seventh state qualifier, but I didn't see the end of it. Herrera had a 4-0 lead in the third period. Another Driller is in a dogfight at 120. Arik Onsurez leads Kingsburg's Jonas Tirado 3-2 late in the second. Onsurez could really use an escape for a cushion before the period ends, but it doesn't look like he's going to get it. 3-2 Onsurez going to the third. Escape for Tirado to tie the match, 3-3. Takedown could win it here. Scramble position, with Tirado hanging on Onsurez's shoulders. Stalemate called with just under a minute. Still 3-3. Shot for Onsurez. He's in pretty deep, crowd calling for 2, and now the referee awards the takedown with 25 seconds remaining. Big win on the horizon for Onsurez. Tirado to his feet with 10, but he's brought back down and that'll be that. 5-3 for Arik ONsurez and into state. He falls to the mat in a moment of reflection. At 126, a wild match ongoing between Madera's Antony Munoz and Wasco's Josh Hokit. It's 10-7 for Hokit, but Munoz reverses and now cuts it to 10-9. He lets Hokit go and needs a late takedown to tie it. Instead it's Hokit throwing the over-aggressive Munoz past and sealing a 13-9 victory. Hokit is safely to state for Wasco, the Tigers' fourth qualifier.
Herrera did win, 7-2, so he's in. Same goes for Foothill's Marco Velasquez at 113; Velasquez pins Dinuba's Tomas Ramirez to reach state. Clovis' Julian Gaytan also a winner to become the Cougars' eighth state qualifier.
Upset at 113, where Clovis East's Joseph Jauergui, second in the Yosemite Division last week, can't shake off his earlier loss to Isaiah Hokit and loses 11-9 to Redwood's Isaiah Torres, who was the Y8. Now Jauergui really in some hot water; he needs to win his next two to reach state. He should be the favorite in that ninth-place bracket, but you never know at this point.
106 winners (state qualifiers): Carlos Herrera, Bakersfield; David Campbell, Lemoore; Julian Gaytan, Clovis; Javier Jimenez, Porterville
113 state qualifiers: Isaiah Torres, Redwood; A.J. Rosas, Reedley; Marco Velasquez, Foothill; Alex Orosco, Edison
UPDATED, 11:59 a.m.: Full consolation on all six mats now, but of note in the heavyweight quarterfinals: Garret Johnson finished off a 7-2 decision for Wasco, and Lemoore's Jonathan Roa took out Selma's Joey Alvarez in a tough Y2/S1 matchup.
Team scores through the quarterfinals (final QF results are listed below):
1. Clovis 67; 2. Buchanan 61; 3. Bakersfield 51.5; 4. Clovis West 39.5; 5. Lemoore 33; 6. Porterville 29.5; 7. Frontier 26; 8. Wasco 25; 9. Central 24.5; 10. Firebaugh 21; 11. Clovis East 18; 12. Monache 15; t13. Madera and Corcoran 14; 15. Bullard 11.
220 quarterfinals: Cortes Morales, Clovis West, dec. Paul Vandergriff, Liberty-Madera Ranchos, 6-0
Marcus Ponce, Central, dec. Chris Figueroa, Mendota, 8-7
Hexton Coronado, Clovis, pins Peter Mendoza, Madera South, 0:34
Sean Medley, Wasco, pins Auggie Alcantar, 2:49
HWT quarterfinals: Nick Nevills, Clovis, pins Robert Barrios, Sierra Pacific, 4:32
Garret Johnson, Wasco, dec. Christian Garcia, Reedley, 7-2
Kai Dill, Buchanan, dec. Anthony Anaya, Corcoran, 5-4
Jonathan Roa, Lemoore, dec. Joey Alvarez, Selma, 4-2
UPDATED, 11:49 a.m.: Eric Torres doing a nice job staying in the match with Nick Kidd of Bakersfield. He's back within 9-5, and now 9-6, but there are only a few seconds left. So that'll be a state berth for Bakersfield's Nick Kidd, who looks satisfied as he leaves the mat.
Sean Medley beat Auggie Alcantar at 220, though, and I believe it was a second-period pin, but I didn't see the finish there.
Medley's teammate, Garret Johnson, is battling Reedley's Christian Garcia at heavyweight, looking to make it three Wasco wrestlers in the semifinals. Johnson lost a heartbreaker of an overtime match to Selma's Joey Alvarez last week in a match that gave the Bears the team title over the Tigers. But here Johnson has a 2-0 lead on Garcia. He'd get his shot at Nick Nevills in the semifinals. Nevills is currently up big on Sierra Pacific's Robert Barrios.
Back at 195, Ridgeview's Jaccob Lopez continues his hot postseason with another pin, this one against Buchanan's Young Woo An. Lopez pinned everybody he wrestled last week with the exception of Nick Kidd, who beat him twice, including in the third-place match. Now Lopez will get a shot at Clovis' Matt Weiss in the semifinals.
They've begun the first consolation round at 106, and this is a crucial one: Winners are in state, guaranteed a spot in the top eight. Losers have to enter a four-man tournament for the final spot at state, ninth place. Odds there obviously aren't great, so this is a big one for these guys. Bakersfield's Carlos Herrera is wrestling Selma's Chris Cisneros and has a 2-0 lead there.
182 quarterfinals: Adrian Salas, Clovis, pins Nathan Mesa, Woodlake, 5:22
Ritchie Brandt, Bullard, dec. Dillon Harroun, Tehachapi, 12-6
Jackson Grout, Buchanan, dec. Nathaniel Vivanco, Firebaugh, 7-2
Kyle Pope, Bakesfield, dec. Jose Robledo, Wasco, 9-3
195 quarterfinals: Matt Weiss, Clovis, pins Enrique Carranza, Corcoran, 3:47
Jacob Lopez, Ridgeview, pins Young Woo An, Buchanan, 2:37
NIck Kidd, Bakersfield, dec. Eric Torres, Shafter, 9-6
Gabriel Gonzalez, Washington Union, dec. Josh Bailey, Frontier, 7-1
UPDATED, 11:36 a.m.: Good quarterfinal at 182 in front of me now, with Bullard's Ritchie Brandt taking on Tehachapi's Dillon Harroun. I believe Brandt beat Harroun last week in a tight match. Really nice double for Brandt, who takes Harroun to his back and has a 5-0 lead now in the final seconds of the first period.
Bakersfield's Kyle Pope also out there against Wasco's Jose Robledo. Two first period takedowns for Pope and now some late nearfall for a 7-1 lead after one. Looks like he was up 9-3 when that match ended.
After an extended blood delay, Brandt has extended his lead to 8-0 over Harroun. Ritchie's older brother, Phil, is in his corner. Phil was second in state at 189 pounds in 2008 and then played running back for Washington State. Still looks like he could go out there and win a championship. Late takedown for Harroun in the second period makes it 8-3, but Harroun has a lot of work to do.
On mat at 220 for the first time today is state No. 1 Sean Medley of Wasco, facing off with Auggie Alcantar of Frontier. A lightning headlock for Medley throws Alcantar to his back, but they're saying the takedown was inbounds but Alcantar lands outside the circle. So two points only for Medley, and now an Alcantar escape makes it 2-1. But there's another takedown for Medley in the final seconds of the first and a 4-1 lead.
Back at 195, a toughie for Frontier's Josh Bailey, who trails state No. 8 Gabriel Gonzalez of Washington Union 2-1 in the second period. On the next mat, Bakersfield's Nick Kidd has a 4-0 lead on Shafter's Eric Torres, so the Drillers are about to get a state qualifier they weren't sure about two weeks ago. Kidd has really turned it up a notch in the postseason.
Two nearfall for Gonzalez on the other mat, and Bailey can't quite finish a switch as the period expires. 4-1 for Gonzalez, and he'll be down in the third. He escapes and now another nice shot. This one turning into a bit of a rout at 7-1.
Brandt finishes off Harroun, a 12-6 victory.
160 quarterfinals: Isaiah Martinez, Lemoore, inj def. Michael Wright, Dinuba
Brody Brand, Clovis, dec. Mason Temple, Liberty-Madera Ranchos, 9-5
Keanu Morin, Selma, dec. Yusuf Robinson, Buchanan, 5-3
Hunter Hodges, Bakersfield, maj. dec. Josue Terrones, Washington Union, 12-4
170 quarterfinals: Bryce Martin, Bakersfield, pins Edgar Segura, Mendota, 1:55
Nick Callender, Clovis East, dec. Kalvin Stuckey, Bullard, 4-3
Alex Gamboa, Madera, dec. Javier Reyes, Buchanan, 11-7
Austin Flores, Clovis North, dec. Isaac Rangel, Firebaugh, 11-4
UPDATED, 11:21 a.m.: Easy Bakersfield wins at 152 for Coleman Hammond and at 170 for Bryce Martin, but the match Drillers fans have their eye on right now is at 160, where state No. 12 Hunter Hodges is up 4-2 in the second period on state No. 5 Josue Terrones of Washington Union. This would be a big win for Hodges, who had a couple of first-period takedowns. In fact, a win here by either guy probably gives them a berth in tonight's final against Isaiah Martinez. Beautiful shot by Hodges makes it 6-2. He's dominating a really good opponent and is announcing himself as a state-medal threat, if he wasn't already. Probably has been underrated all along at No. 12. He adds three more takedowns in the third period for a 12-4 win. Wow. One of the statements of the tournament thus far there.
Good match at 160 also between Clovis' Brody Brand and Liberty-Madera Ranchos' Mason Temple. A Temple takedown evens the score at 4-4. But an escape for Brand and now a quick takedown give the Cougar control back at 7-4. He gives up an escape for 7-5 but is going to seal it with a late takedown. 9-5 for Brand, who's into the semifinals and into state.
145 quarterfinals: Tyler Zimmer, Clovis West, pins Kyle Jones, Exeter, 3:36
Jorge Perez, Edison, dec. Conner Francis, Buchanan, 3-1
A.J. Fierro, Bakersfield, maj. dec. Aaron Gomez, Frontier, 15-5
Jason Ladd, Clovis, dec. Bryce Nutt, Selma, 7-3
152 quarterfinals: Kyle Perreault, Clovis East, maj. dec. Miguel Ferrer, Caruthers, 10-1
Ivan Govea, Firebaugh, pins Teddy Thomson, Buchanan, 4:21
Gregory Pagela, Porterville, dec. Angel Robles, Lemoore, 3-0
Coleman Hammond, Bakersfield, maj. dec. Ryan Escalera, Selma, 13-0
UPDATED, 11:14 a.m.: An all-SWYL matchup at 145, with Bakersfield's AJ Fierro leading Frontier's Aaron Gomez 2-0. Meanwhile, Clovis West collects pins from Chris Garcia at 138 and Tyler Zimmer at 145 within about 20 seconds. That will help the Golden Eagles in the team score, where they sat second after round 1. In the team race, the question remains whether anyone can compete with Clovis there, whether it be Buchanan, Clovis West or Bakersfield. Answer: Probably not. The Cougars are more vulnerable than last year's juggernaut, but they're still a pretty clear favorite here.
But a result that will ding Clovis a little bit comes at 120, where Exeter's Arnulfo Olea, the SS1, beats Jonas Gaytan, the Y2, 7-2. Gaytan came in as No. 3 in the state; Olea was No. 6. Not often you see two Gaytans in the consolation bracket so early at a tournament, but that's the beauty of Masters in the Central Section, where any opponent is a good one.
Major statement at 132 for state No. 2 Javier Gasca of Kingsburg, who tech falls a really good opponent in Porterville's state No. 12, Abel Contreras.
120 quarterfinals: Mason Pengilly, Porterville, tech fall Jonas Tirado, Kingsburg, 15-0
Jason Delcruz, Buchanan, pins Brenden Thomas, Corcoran, 1:19
Daniel Ruiz, Madera, dec. Etienne Armijo, Centennial, 4-0
Arnulfo Olea, Exeter, dec. Jonas Gaytan, Clovis, 7-2
126 quarterfinals: Michael Knoblauch, Clovis West, dec. Ruben Garcia, Selma, 6-0
Armand Molina, Firebaugh, dec. Dean Esquibel, Buchanan, 7-5 OT
Josh Sibayan, Monache, maj. dec. Elijah Jimenez, Clovis North, 10-1
Vincent Gomez, Frontier, dec. Josh Hokit, Wasco, 8-1
132 quarterfinals: Kyler Hansen, Buchanan, maj. dec. Aaron Mora, Firebuagh, 9-1
Adrian Panduro, Corcoran, maj. dec. Xesus Velarde, Clovis, 21-9
Izaiah Ozuna, Frontier, dec. Jesus Valdes, Dos Palos, 5-2
Javier Gasca, Kinngsburg tech fall Abel Contreras, Porterville, 17-1
138 quarterfinals: Martin Sandoval, Porterville, pins Paul Reyna, Yosemite, 3:00
Abner Romero, Buchanan, dec. Nathan Pimentel, Dos Palos, 6-3
Matt Ontiveros, Central, dec. Christian Rodriguez, Reedley, 6-2
Chris Garcia, Clovis West, pins Ralph Pena, Selma, 5:30
UPDATED, 10:59 a.m.: Another short break for me, but we're well into quarterfinals now, with Frontier's Izaiah Ozuna finishing off Dos Palos' Jesus Valdes 5-1 in front of me. HIs teammate, Vincent Gomez, also had a nice victory over Wasco's Josh Hokit at 126. Gomez now just a step away from a rematch with Knoblauch in the final tonight.
I'll start listing official quarterfinal results as they come through. Remember, winners here are officially in the state meet no matter what happens in this afternoon's semifinals.
106 quarterfinals: Adrian Camposano, Central, tech fall Anthony Ortega, Dos Palos, 18-2
Joey Cisneros, Redwood, dec. Julian Gaytan, Clovis, 6-4
Durbin Lloren, Buchanan, dec. David Campbell, Lemoore, 6-2
Matt Gamble, Monache, dec. Chris Cisneros, Selma, 4-0
113 quarterfinals: Sean Williams, Lemoore, maj. dec. Noel Ramirez, Kingsburg, 13-1
Greg Gaxiola, Buchanan, dec. Marco Velasquez, Foothill, 4-2
Khristian Olivas, Clovis, dec. A.J. Rosas, Reedley, 9-2
Isaiah Hokit, Wasco, dec. Joseph Jauergui, Clovis East, 7-2
UPDATED, 10:44 a.m.: A near takedown for Marco Velasquez against Buchanan's Greg Gaxiola at 113, but they're ruled out of bounds first, and Velasquez continues to trail, 4-2. He's looking for his second straight come-from-behind victory. Gaxiola leads 4-2 through three periods. Neutral for the third.
Also at 113, Isaiah Hokit leading Jauregui 5-1 in the final minute of the match. Scramble position results in another takedown for Hokit. Escape Jauregui, but they'll restart with only 5 seconds left and Hokit ahead 7-2. He'll win by that score and is safely into the state tournament.
Time running out now for Velasquez against Greg Gaxiola. Not much there for Velasquez. They go out of bounds with four seconds left. That's it. Gaxiola hangs on, 4-2, No. 5 in the section edging No. 6.
At 120, a pin for Buchanan's Jason Delacruz over Corcoran's Brenden Thomas, so Thomas back into the consolations. A 4-0 victory for Madera's Daniel Ruiz over Centennial's Etienne Armijo.
Now Hokit's brother, Josh Hokit, taking on Vincent Gomez in one of these Y2/S1 battles in the quarters. Gomez has the first takedown. He's got a turn before the first period expires and a 5-0 lead. Again, Gomez vs. Knoblauch in the finals tonight is almost a foregone conclusion. Escape and takedown for Gomez in the second, and he leads 8-0.
Team scores through the first round, such as they are without all the top guys wrestling yet: 1. Clovis 18; 2. Clovis West 15.5; 3. Lemoore 15; 4. Frontier 14; 5. Bakersfield 12.5; 6. Buchanan 11; t7. Porterville and Firebaugh 9; 9. Corcoran 8; 10. Central 6.
UPDATED, 10:32 a.m.: We've begun quarterfinals at the stacked weight of 106, where Buchanan's Durbin Lloren has a slim lead on Lemoore's David Campell late in the second period.
Back in the first round, Bakersfield heavyweight Shaq Garret is in overtime with Corcoran's Anthony Anaya in an S4-Y7. Anaya just threw Garret by and got the takedown for a 3-1 victory. I believe that's the final first-rounder out there. The final results are below, with quick work for state No. 1 Nick Nevills of Clovis against North's Mark Guerrero, and also for Wasco's Garret Johnson against Ridgeview's Gabriel Rosas.
Back to 106 quarterfinals, Lloren leads Campbell 5-2 to begin the third. Redwood's Joey Cisneros just worked a mild upset of Clovis' Julian Gaytan, 6-4. That's the section No. 5 over the No. 4 and state No. 8 over No. 5. These are some legit matches. Again, losers here meet first-round losers; winners are officially in the top six (at worst) and in the state tournament. So things are starting to get real here.
Foothill's Marco Velasquez up next at 113 against Buchanan freshman Greg Gaxiola, who had a great tournament last week and gets the early takedown here. Now it's 4-1 after another TD.
Big match at 113 is Clovis East's Joseph Jauregui against Wasco's Isaiah Hokit. Hokit is No. 6 in state and No. 2 in the section, with Jauregui No. 3 section/No. 17 state. Hokit gets a takedown out of a scramble and now adds two nearfall for a 4-0 lead.
Final back at 106 gives Durbin Lloren a 6-2 victory over Lemoore's David Campbell. The last 106-pound quarter is a victory for Monache's Matt Gamble 4-0 over Selma's Chris Cisneros.
220 first round: Cortes Morales, Clovis West; Chris Figueroa, Mendota; Peter Mendoza, Madera South; Auggie Alcantar, Frontier
HWT first round: Nick Nevills, Clovis; Garret Johnson, Wasco; Anthony Anaya, Corcoran; Jonathan Roa, Lemoore
UPDATED, 10:24 a.m.: From the department of tough Y2 draws, we bring you Frontier's Auggie Alcantar, who has to take on Lemoore's Adrian Garza in the first round. Heavens, this was a semifinal at a very tough tournament last week, so Alcantar needs to be ready to go right away.
Also at 195, Shafter's Eric Torres continues to lead Liberty's Jacob Heinsohn. The Patriots coaches are really getting on Heinsohn here. He looks a bit sluggish, I must say, and Torres is taking advantage. There's an escape for Heinsohn to pull within 6-3, but the early four-point move from Torres looks like it's going to hold up. Torres gets a late takedown, and even though the clock stopped running, that's going to be that. An 8-3 decision for Eric Torres.
I believe Kyle Pope finished off Carlos Montejo at 182, but I didn't see the finish. Another 182 winner was Tehachapi's Dillon Harroun, who took out Dos Palos' Juan Jimenez 4-0.
Back to Alcantar. Garza is trying to escape in a scoreless match, but Alcantar tries to bring him back down — look out now, Alcantar nearly falls to his back! But he keeps running around and flips Garza on his back! A pin at 2:46! Wow, things happened quickly there, and Auggie Alcantar is into the quarterfinals, where he'll get none other than state No. 1 Sean Medley of Wasco. Yeah, life's no fun as the Y2.
Just come to find out the victory for Josh Bailey at 195 was an injury default over Clovis North's Josh Karam. Karam defaulted to sixth last week, too, so we'll see if he's able to keep going today.
170: Bryce Martin, Bakersfield; Kalvin Stuckey, Bullard; Javier Reyes, Buchanan; Austin Flores, Clovis North
182: Adrian Salas, Clovis; Dillon Harroun, Tehachapi; Nathaneil Vivanco, Firebaugh; Kyle Pope, Bakersfield
195: Matt Weiss, Clovis; Young Woo An, Buchanan; Eric Torres, Shafter; Josh Bailey, Frontier
UPDATED, 10:11 a.m.: I had said Kyle Shepherd of Frontier was in control at 160, but I obviously can't see the scoreboard very well on that mat, because it's 1-1 headed to overtime between Shepherd and Mason Temple of Liberty-Madera Ranchos. Late in the OT, now in fact, and still 1-1. Shepherd has a single-leg, but Temple has the wizzer. Both trying to finish in the dying seconds of OT. It'll be Temple with the takedown and a slight upset, the section No. 7 over the No. 6, in the first round. Lots of work to do now for Shepherd.
I say that, but it's also true that first-round consolation winners are also just a win away from reaching state. With a win, they're guaranteed at least eighth place. So these first-round winners and losers are both still a win away; it's just that the winners have more margin for error — they can lose and still find themselves in the same round as if they had lost this match. I hope that makes more sense to a reader than it did to this writer, but I think I have that right. The first-round losers and quarterfinal losers end up in the same round, where another win means state for any of them. I feel like I deserve a calculus credit for figuring that out, don't you?
Bryce Martin out on mat for Bakersfield against Jaime Martinez of Lemoore at 170. Martin collects a takedown and two nearfall from a tilt before Martinez slips out and gets an escape. They're now in the second period, with Martin ahead comfortably, 8-3. He's adding points left and right and leads 14-3 into the third period.
An all-Kern matchup at 182 between Bakersfield's Kyle Pope and Frontier's Carlos Montejo. Pope, the state No. 4, nearly has an early takedown but Montejo gets out of bounds first. Still scoreless there in a rematch of the SWYL finals. Another all-Kern matchup at 195 is Liberty's Jacob Heinsohn and Shafter's only entry, Eric Torres. This is a Y7 vs. S4, so it's more than plausible that only one of these guys is going to get a state berth. Torres has the takedown and now turns Heinsohn on his back. 4-0 lead for Torres, who didn't have a great tournament in his home gym last weekend but is hoping to get it done here. The winner gets Bakersfield's Nick Kidd, who had a great weekend in Madera but who isn't an impossible matchup.
Pope, meanwhile, continues to suck wind late in matches. The guy was second in state last year but tore some rib cartilage during football season and then battled several different bouts of illness since. It's been a battle for him, but he'd be the last guy I know to offer any excuses. He's ahead of Montejo 4-1.
Marquee matchup at 195 just ended, with Frontier's Josh Bailey taking down Clovis North's Josh Karam. Gabriel Gonzalez of Washington Union is next for Bailey in another tough road for a Y2.
Moderate surprise at 152 as I look through results: State No. 10 Dominic Kincaid of Clovis loses 6-2 against Firebaugh's Ivan Govea, who's ranked No. 16.
152: Kyle Perreault, Clovis East; Ivan Govea, Firebaugh; Angel Robles, Lemoore; Coleman Hammond, Bakersfield
160: Isaiah Martinez, Lemoore; Mason Temple, Liberty-Madera Ranchos; Keanu Morin, Selma; Hunter Hodges, Bakersfield
UPDATED, 9:58 a.m.: Quick work for Frontier's Vincent Gomez in the first round, as the state No. 2 pins East's Adam Bracamonte in 45 seconds. Gomez moves on to face Wasco freshman Josh Hokit in what won't be an easy quarterfinal. Still, it will be a shock if we don't see a Gomez-Michael Knoblauch rematch in tonight's final. Knoblauch was elevated to the No. 1 rank in state after beating Gomez 8-7 in a wild final a week ago. He opens today with a tech fall of Madera's Antony Munoz.
Back at 120, a shaky result for Foothill's Nick Marquez, who loses 6-4 to Corcoran's Brenden Thomas. Marquez now has little margin for error as he enters the consolation bracket. It should be noted, though, that even first-round consolation winners aren't yet done for. They will enter into a four-man bracket for ninth place — which is the last spot available at state.
We're up 145 now, where Frontier's Aaron Gomez is in a battle with Kerman's Basilio Gutierez. Gomez has a 4-3 lead and is in bottom position with about a minute to go. Now he gets out for a 5-3 lead. Gomez is going to hang on for a bubble win in that Y7-S4 match.
Up at 160, SWYL rivals Hunter Hodges of Bakersfield and Frontier's Kyle Shepherd are both in control. Hodges, in fact, just finished a tech fall of Sanger's Jose Padilla, 17-0, before two periods were up. Coleman Hammond, still state No. 2 after he was pinned in stunning fashion by Kyle Perreault in the Yosemite Division championship last week, is up 8-3 on Madera's Miguel Ruiz. The Y2 does not have an easy draw the way these Masters brackets are set up, and Kern County has no fewer than six of those Y2s, including Hammond. But if they wrestle well, they should be fine for the most part. That was the case too for Clovis' Jason Ladd at 145, though he got a real battle from Y6 Isidro Arroyo of Reedley before holding on for a 5-3 victory. If they survive this first round, these guys get the SS champion in the marquee quarterfinal we've talked about.
126: Michael Knoblauch, Clovis West; Armand Molina, Firebaugh; Elijah Jimenez, Clovis North; Vincent Gomez, Frontier
132: Kyler Hansen, Buchanan; Adrian Panduro, Corcoran; Jesus Valdes, Dos Palos; Abel Contreras, Porterville
138: Martin Sandoval, Porterville; Nathan Pimentel, Dos Palos; Matt Ontiveros, Central; Chris Garcia, Clovis West
145: Tyler Zimmer, Clovis West; Conner Francis, Buchanan; Aaron Gomez, Frontier; Jason Ladd, Clovis
UPDATED, 9:42 a.m.: Sorry, stepped away for a minute to use the bathroom after my drive up this morning and to get my bearings a little bit better. The first round is motoring through the middleweights. One thing I noticed is that Bakersfield's Antonio Gutierrez, who I had said is out of the draw after injuring his shoulder last week, apparently just wrestled. He was pinned by Corcoran's Adrian Panduro with a big wrap on his shoulder, but he will have a chance to get through to state via the consolation rounds and then take another week to rest if he can get through. I think that's got to be considered a pretty big if at this point, though.
An easy win up at 138 for Central's Matt Ontiveros, who dominates Kingsburg's Devin Smith en route to the quarterfinals. Ontiveros, you'll remember, missed weight two weeks ago at 132 at the TRAC finals but moved up to 138. He qualified seventh last week, but you'd figure another week gaining strength for the new weight will do him good. He was ranked No. 2 in the section at 132.
Didn't see the match, but back at 113, Clovis East's Joseph Jauregui won an apparently wild match with Edison's Alex Orosco, 19-13. He'll move on to face Wasco's Isiaah Hokit in the quarterfinals.
That brings to mind that many of these Y2-Y6 winners will set up marquee matchups with the Sierra/Sequoia champions in the quarterfinals. In many times, those are two state top 10s doing battle with only a semifinal spot on the line (and, of course, the all-important trip to Rabobank).
A nice win at 120 for Etienne Armijo of Centennial, who pins Washington Union's Alejandro Ferrer in a Y7-S4 battle. You've got to figure the losers there are at risk to become one of the three wrestlers in their weight class to be eliminated.
Let's get caught up on some more first-round winners:
113: Sean Williams, Lemoore; Marco Velasquez, Foothill; A.J. Rosas, Reedley; Joseph Jauregui, Clovis East
120: Mason Pengilly, Porterville; Brenden Thomas, Corcoran; Etienne Armijo, Centennial; Jonas Gaytan, Clovis
UPDATED, 9:25 a.m.: At 113, Washington Union's Roberto Jimenez is up early on Foothill's Marco Velasquez, 4-0. That's an S2 vs. Y5 in a first-round matchup that could be pivotal at a lot of weights. The winner there gets the Y4.
A good first-rounder at 120, where Monache's Seth Hood got into the draw as an alternate. His reward is a date with state No. 1 Mason Pengilly of Porterville. Pengilly has a couple of first-period takedowns and leads 4-1 after the first two minutes.
Velasquez has begun to fight back against Jimenez, traling 4-2 and in neutral in the second period. Trouble for Velasquez now, though, with a takedown and three-point nearfall for Jimenez. The Trojan reverses, but he still trails 9-4 late in the second. Velasquez gets a takedown to pull within 9-7, and now he's getting nearfall. Two points, and this match is tied. Still, Jimenez can re-take the lead with an escape. But he looks gassed. Velasquez turns him again, and he's going to take the lead. Two more points, and an 11-9 lead for Foothill. Can Velasquez hold on? Yep. An 11-9 comeback win in which he scored the final nine points.
No trouble for Pengilly on the other mat; he leads Hood 7-1 after two. This just goes to show you, though, that at Masters, even as the top dog, there are no easy matches. Pengilly will hang on for a workmanlike 9-2 victory.
Also at 120, Clovis' Jonas Gaytan has the first-period takedown on Bakersfield's Arik Onsurez in a Y2 vs. Y6 matchup. Now in the second, Gaytan adds an escape and takedown to lead 5-0. Gaytan will hope to get another shot at Pengilly in tonight's finals, which are scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. Now he has Onsurez turned near the end of the period. No pin, but the lead has ballooned to 11-2 for Gaytan. He turns Onsurez again in the third and gets the pin at 5:14. Nice performance from Gaytan that picked up steam as he went.
I'll begin to update first-round winners in each weight below each post when I've got the whole weight.
106: Adrian Camposano, Central; Joey Cisneros, Redwood; David Campbell, Lemoore; Matt Gamble, Monache
UPDATED, 9:14 a.m.: Before we get going here, a couple of news items to pass along in the form of alternates who have gotten into the Masters draw because of defaults elsewhere in the bracket: At 113 pounds, Tomas Ramirez of Dinuba gets in because Eduardo Arciga of Caruthers is out; at 120 (and this is the big one), Monache's Seth Hood, a top-15 wrestler in the state, gets into the draw despite a bad week last week at the Yosemite Divisional. He replaces Shaquwan Wright of Fresno. And finally, at 132, Bakersfield's Antonio Gutierrez is out with a shoulder injury and will be replaced by Madera's James Valenzuela. That leaves the Drillers, one of the contenders for a podium spot as a team here, with nine wrestlers in the draw.
With that out of the way, let's get to wrestling. Right in front of me at 106 is Bakersfield's Carlos Herrera taking down Central's Adrian Camposano, the Yosemite champion. That's a surprise, but there's a lot of match left. Camposano escapes for a 2-1 deficit. In a lot of places, this first-round Y1 vs. Y8 match is a rematch of a quarterfinal from last week, including this one. Camposano won that rather easily, but a new week can always mean a new outcome. Camposano is down in the second period, trailing 2-1. He escapes to tie the match, 2-2. Herrera is really the aggressor here, and it'd be a huge win to take down the top seed and move closer to state as the No. 8 seed. But there's a takedown for Camposano; I think Herrera over-extended himself a little, and the Grizzly took advantage. But there's a tilt for Camposano for three nearfall points and that changes this match dramatically. A 7-2 lead for Camposano, who looks like he's shaken off the early takedown. Herrera can't get out in the second and chooses neutral in the third. Camposano will add a takedown and nearfall late and end up winning, comfortably, 12-3.
A victory in this round, by the way, doesn't guarantee wrestlers of anything just yet. You've got to reach the semifinals to be guaranteed a spot at state; quarterfinal losers will drop down into the first consolation round, where they'll wrestle first-round losers.
David Campbell of Lemoore takes out Caruthers' Jose Licea 5-3 in the first round, so he's in the quarterfianls at 106 also.
ORIGINAL POST: I'm here at Mt. Whitney High School in Visalia for the Central Section Grand Masters wrestling meet, where nine tough guys in each weight class will punch a ticket to next week's CIF State Championships in Bakersfield and where the toughest of them all can call himself a section champion.
Mt. Whitney is the original high school in Visalia and has a really cool old-school feel to it, from the caged-in scoreboard to the visitors coaching box (for basketball) to the Johnny Cash playing to the whole feel of it. Makes for a cool atmosphere for what I believe is a first-time host for the Masters meet.
We're just about ready for action, so I won't waste any more time. First-round action up next.