Alrighty everyone. I’m back for another year of CIF state wrestling at the Rabobank Arena in Bakersfield. I’ll be posting updates throughout the day (it’s gonna be a long day), and I’ll try to keep you updated on how your local wrestlers are doing. For our North Bay North Coast Section fans, you guys are welcome too, since I figure I’m the best you’ve got. Check below for updates.
8 pm: While I have a quick minute between matches, figured I’d tell ya that the East Bay will have a semifinalist, as De La Salle’s Joey Moita won his match 2-0. Tomorrow, he’ll face his old training partner, Chico’s Nashon Garrett, in the semifinals.
7:20 pm: Alright everyone, I’ve got to go down to mat level to watch the quarters, so I won’t be able to blog. Gotta grab kids for quotes and what not. I’ll try to throw up some final thoughts in a while.
7:10 pm: So, I’ve been thumbing through the brackets and I just realized that I’ve been short-changing a fifth finalist from the East Bay. Oakland Tech’s Craig Sherman is also in the quarters, making it at 152 pounds. He’ll face Del Oro-Loomis’ Jesse Stafford, the No. 2 wrestler in the state at that weight class.
6:45 pm: Latest team scores have De La Salle sitting in 11th with 32 points. Bakersfield still leads with 65. For those wondering, there is not another North Coast Section school in the top 50.
6:05 pm: Barragan gets an escape point but then gets called again for stalling. 5-1 Elor. Elor adds two more and wins 7-1. So, after the third championship round, four East Bay wrestlers remain in the hunt for a state title. I’m gonna go grab some food, and I’ll be back in a bit.
6 pm: Elor starts the second in the bottom position, and gets the escape point he was looking for. He leads 2-0. He adds a takedown, and leads 4-0. The second period ends with Elor up 4-0.
5:55 pm: Elor and Barragan start slowly, locking each other up for the most part. Barragan is called for stalling, which gives Elor the early 1-0 lead. Elor takes Barragan down, but it’s out of bounds and the score remains 1-0. That’s how the first period ends, with Elor up 1-0.
5:55 pm: Alright, Elor has popped his head out of the tunnel and he’s headed for his mat. He’ll face Gilroy’s Luis Barragan. This is No. 2 in the state vs. No. 7.
5:45 pm: Well, the last local we have in this round will be College Park heavyweight Orry Elor. They’re wrestling 215-pound matches now, so Elor’s should be soon. So far, the East Bay has three quarterfinalists — De La Salle’s Joe Moita, De La Salle’s Luke Sheridan and Newark Memorial’s Victor Pereira. We’ll see if Elor can make it four.
5:30 pm: Lewis starts the second in the down position, gets a quick reversal, and sticks Reggi. That’s all he needs, and Lewis wins via pin. Next up for the locals is College Park’s Orry Elor at 285 pounds.
5:30 pm: Reggi and Lewis are ready to go. Lewis is the aggressor early on, scoring the first two points with a takedown. Reggi flips it right away though, scoring two for a reversal. Nice move there by Reggi. Score is 2-2. Reggi tries to get some back points by Lewis counters, scoring two for a reversal. Reggi escapes and, at the end of one period, Lewis leads 4-3.
5:25 pm: Albany’s Andrew Reggi is heading out to his mat, set to face Benicia’s Josh Lewis. Little bit of a local match here. Gotta like that.
5:20 pm: Since he won so quickly, Sheridan gets to sit and watch his next opponent wrestle. It’ll either be Isaac Archebique of Ventura or Tyler Wood of Modoc.
5:20 pm: Sheridan and Heene are underway. Sheridan strikes first, hitting the headlock and it’s over! 59 seconds and Sheridan is through to the next round with a pin.
5:15 pm: Sheridan is out of the tunnel and heading to the mat. He’ll face Carlsbad’s Nick Heene.
5:05 pm: Engdahl has to cut Marchese loose to start the period, and now trails 6-3. Engdahl tries to get the shot but Marchese counteres well, spinning Engdahl towards the boundary. They set back up at neutral, and Marchese is warned for stalling. That’ll do it, with Marchese winning 6-3. Next up for the locals is De La Salle’s Luke Sheridan at 171 pounds.
5:05 pm: Engdahl starts the second on bottom, and he’s doing his best to escape. He finally gets free, and leads 3-1. Marchese hooks the right leg but can’t convert. Nice defense there by Engdahl. Great move by Marchese! He gets the takedown and then adds two more for a near-fall. Marchese leads 5-3 after two periods.
5 pm: Engdahl opens the scoring, getting a takedown with 45 seconds left in the first. Marchese gets the escape, and at the end of one period, Engdahl leads 2-1.
5 pm: Granada’s Brian Engdahl is now on the mat. He’s set to wrestle Oak Hills’ Robert Marchese. Engdahl’s looked good so far today.
4:55 pm: Interesting strategy here, as Cress allows the escape for a 4-4 tie. Noon tries a shot but Cress counters, scoring two himself. Noon reverses it to tie the match, hooks Cress, and he’s got back points in the bag. He finishes the deal, scoring the pin with 21 seconds left and that’s it. Noon advances, with Cress heading to the consolation bracket.
4:50 pm: Cress starts the second at neutral. Noon hits a shot and, after some convincing, gets the takedown. 4-3 Cress. A dangerous hold call prompts a restart with Cress on bottom, but he can’t escape and at the end of two, it’s 4-3 Cress with Noon starting the third in the down position.
4:45 pm: Noon tries a carry and Cress has no trouble getting rid of that, scoring two for a takedown. Noon gets the escape, and it’s 2-1 Cress early in the first. Cress gets another takedown and leads 4-1. At the end of one period, Cress leads 4-1.
4:45 pm: Alright, Cress is ready to go. Antioch coaches Brett McNamar and Leroy Rivers join him in the corner. He’s facing Trent Noon of Oakdale.
4:45 pm: Pereira gets another takedown with about a minute to go and moves his lead to 9-1. He gets another near fall, making it 12-1. That’s all she wrote, and Victor Pereira is the second East Bay wrestler into the quarters with a 12-1 win over Alex Pisacane of Torrey Pines. Next on the mat for the East Bay will be Antioch’s Anthony Cress.
4:40 pm: Pisacane chooses to start the second period at neutral. That strategy doesn’t pay off, as Pereira uses it as an opportunity to tack on two more points with a takedown. 4-0 Pereira. The Newark soph adds three for a near-fall and leads 7-0. Pisacane escapes and the second ends with Pereira up 7-1.
4:35 pm: Pereira strikes first, getting a takedown early in the first. Pisacane almost gets an escape, but the first period ends that way, with Pereira up 2-0.
4:35 pm: Quick turnaround here as Pereira is already underway. He’s facing Alex Pisacane of Torrey Pines.
4:30 pm: I didn’t get to see a whole lot of it, but Vincent just went down to Northview’s Frank Martinez. Martinez is No. 2 in the state. Next local to hit the mat will be Victor Pereira.
4:25 pm: Baldazo spends the entire third period trying to turn Slaughter, but he never can get there. Slaughter got warned for stalling but never called for it, and that’s how it ends. 5-2 Slaughter. Baldazo goes into the consolation bracket.
4:20 pm: Baldazo starts in the down position for the second period. Slaughter gets a couple back points but Baldazo gets a reversal. So, it’s now 4-2 Slaughter. Slaughter gets a point for an escape and, at th end of two, it’s 5-2 Slaughter.
4:15 pm: Baldazo and Slaughter are set to wrestle. They’re actually on a mat I can see, which is always nice. Both wrestlers start off fairly aggressive, but neither has been able to land anything yet. Five seconds left in the period and Slaughter gets a takedown. 2-0 Slaughter after one.
4:15 pm: Alright, Baldazo has emerged from the tunnel and he’ll be wrestling shortly. Also, Dublin’s Nate Vincent should be on the mat soon.
3:55 pm: Liberty’s Jesse Baldazo will be next at 140 pounds. He’s facing Irvine’s Walker Slaughter (yet another good name).
3:55 pm: Alright, Abono was on the mat briefly, but Selma’s Nick Pena got an early pin for the win. Pena is No. 2 in the state.
3:35 pm: Garcia gets on the board with a takedown, but Zimmer reverses it and the score is 5-2 Zimmer heading into the third. Garcia is battling gamely though. Zimmer gets another takedown and it’s 7-2. Zimmer adds a couple more and wins 9-2. Also, I’m told Sergi lost his match. I’ll get confirmation on that shortly. Next up for the East Bay is DLS 130-pounder Alex Abono.
3:35 pm: Garcia trails 2-0 after one period. He spent a good deal of the period with his face stuck to the mat. Zimmer scores an escape to begin the third, and leads 3-0. I haven’t seen Sergi come out of the tunnel yet, but it’s entirely possible I missed him. That would suck, for sure.
3:30 pm: Alright, Roman Garcia is on the mat. He’s facing Zach Zimmer of Clovis West, who is ranked No. 1 in the state. I think it’s fair to call Garcia an underdog.
3:20 pm: Vinny Moita is about to wrestle his consolation match, which means this is a good time to make good on something I told him I’d do. For those interested in trivia, Vinny is the chairman of the “Barbeque Club” at De La Salle. Last time I heard him talk about it, he was planning on bringing tri-tip for the club. He writes it on his bout sheets when he makes the finals, but nobody ever reads it! So, there you have it. There’s a school club I think the Geeks should get involved with!
3:15 pm: As an aside, the fruit in the media room today was quite nice. Good quality fruit. Only problem is I have to walk down two massive sets of stairs to get to the fruit. It’s the classic conundrum, I tell you.
3:10 pm: Next up in the championship bracket will be a pair of 119-pounders, College Park’s Brian Sergi and Freedom’s Roman Garcia. Should be in a couple minutes.
3:10 pm: Gomez allows an escape to try to score from his feet. 3-0 Moita now. Gomez is trying to shoot but Moita is defending well. Time expires and there you have it. Joey Moita is into the quarterfinals with a win over the No. 7-ranked wrestler in the state.
3:05 pm: Alright, I had that backwards (the match is across the arena). Moita does lead 2-0, but he starts the third on bottom. He’s wrestling really well so far.
3:05 pm: Moita starts the second in the down position, but Gomez is pretty tough on top it looks like. He rides out the second period, and it remains 2-0 Moita heading into the third.
3 pm: Moita scores first, picking up two points for a takedown. That’s how it stands after one period.
3 pm: First up in championship round 3 for the locals will be De La Salle’s Joey Moita. He ‘ll face Warren-Downey’s Damien Gomez. Gomez is ranked No. 7 in the state.
2:55 pm: Championship round three is about to begin. Let’s see how many locals can stay alive.
2:25 pm: Team scores after championship round 2. Bakersfield leads with 43 points, followed by Poway (37.5), Clovis (33), Sultana (32) and Lemoore (31.5). De La Salle is the top NCS school and is in 13th place with 20 points.
2:15 pm: Here’s a quick rundown of the East Bay wrestlers still in the championship bracket:
Orry Elor (College Park, 285), Andrew Reggi (Albany, 189), Luke Sheridan (DLS, 171), Brian Engdahl (Granada, 160), Anthony Cress (Antioch, 152), Victor Pereira (Newark Memorial, 145), Nate Vincent (Dublin, 140), Jesse Baldazo (Liberty, 140), Alex Abono (DLS, 130), Roman Garcia (Freedom, 119), Brian Sergi (College Park, 119), Joe Moita (DLS, 103).
2:10 pm: More comments! I like it. Alright, for our McNair fan out there. Micenheimer is 2-0 at 215 pounds. He won his pigtail 5-4 and then won by pin. Wilson is 1-0, a winner by pin in his first match. Ceballos is 1-0, winner by decision in his first match. I believe they’re updating the CIF web site, in case you want to see the brackets that they give me.
2 pm: Alright, sorry for the delay. Been working on a number of things. Let me delve into the comments real quick. Renegades, yes, Vinny’s still in the tourney. I didn’t get a chance to see his next match, so I’ll update that when I find out what happened. He now shoots for third, and he’ll have to win a bunch of matches to get there. And, for an emailer, Albany’s Aaron Pen Kruger just won his consolation match after losing his first 8-2. So, he’s still alive.
12:55 pm: De La Salle’s Luke Sheridan is through to the next round, scoring a first-round pin in his match. He certainly didn’t have to expend much energy for that one.
12:45 pm: Granada’s Brian Engdahl just won his second match of the day, and he stays alive in the championship bracket. Also, forgot to mention that Oakland Tech’s Craig Sherman won his first match of the day.
12:40 pm: Went downstairs to watch a couple matches from the photo well, and saw Newark’s Victor Pereira, Liberty’s Jesse Baldazo and Antioch’s Anthony Cress all win. Cress had to sweat out a tough match, but got it done. So, those three continue on and we continue in championship action. This round is scheduled to last until 2 p.m., but I’ll go ahead and hope for it to go a little faster than that.
11:45 am: Demison ended up pinning Mai. On that same mat, De La Salle’s Alex Abono just finished his first match of the day, beating El Dorado’s Michael Vargas 4-3. That’s an impressive win for Abono, as Vargas took second at the Southern Section meet.
11:30 am: Logan’s Danny Mai is on the mat, wrestling Bakersfield’s Natrelle Demison. Demison leads 4-3 in the second.
11:05 am: College Park’s Brian Sergi is on to the next round, with a 7-2 win in his match.
11 am: So, we’re past the pigtails now and fully into the next championship round. In the program they call it the second championship round, but I’ve always thought of this as the first real round. De La Salle’s’ Joe Moita just won but, in the first big upset of the day where our locals are concerned, his brother Vinny just lost at the buzzer to North Torrance’s Kenny Mai. That’s a big blow for NCS fans, because Moita was looking for a deep run.
10:35 am: Wynn heads to double overtime. He ‘s in the down position to start and gets the escape, pulling into a 3-2 lead. His opponent gets the down position in the second portion of double OT, and gets the reversal with 2 seconds left, winning 4-3! Oh man. Wynn had the upper hand and let that one get away.
10:30 am: NCS champ Justin Harrison of Lower Lake won his match at 215 pounds. I didn’t catch the score. That kid looked awfully good at NCS and I’d imagine he could do some damage down here.
10:30 am: Wynn is headed to overtime, tied at 2. Rashad trails 8-6 in the second period.
10:25 am: Wynn trailed 2-1 entering the third but scored an escape and is now tied 2-2. Rashad leads 2-1 after a period.
10:20 am: Ironically, Wynn’s match is next to one featuring Fort Bragg’s Matthew Rashad. Rashad and Wynn put on one heckuva show in the 3rd-place match at NCS. They’re both football players, and I know they have a ton of respect for each other. Two good kids right there.
10:10 am: Reggi scores the first pin for one of our locals, ending the match with five seconds left in the first period. That was impressive. Sheridan also wins, going the full three periods to win 9-0. Sheridan’s teammate Jordan Felix just got the call, and I’d imagine heavyweight Dylan Wynn will follow shortly.
10:10 am: Albany’s Andrew Reggi is wrestling on the mat right in front of me and is off to a great start. He’s already got a takedown and some back points and is looking for a pin. Sheridan continues to lead across the arena.
10:05 am: De La Salle’s Luke Sheridan has taken the mat and leads 2-0 early. I’ve been given some early brackets, and I see that Freedom’s Dominic DiMercurio lost his pigtail match. So did his teammate, Zack Wiley. In general the pigtails have been unkind to our locals so far. Pereira and Moita are the only ones I’ve seen win (although I think Brian Engdahl from Granada just got a win too).
9:50 am: Sitzmann led most of the match but a third-period flurry of scoring proved his undoing and he lost 9-6. Pereira scored a takedown and near-fall near the end of the first to lead 5-0 after one period. He led 12-0 after two, and eventually won by technical fall. Great start for Pereira, as he didn’t allow a point in the whole match.
9:45 am: We get our first look at Newark Memorial soph Victor Pereira, as he’ll take the mat shortly. Marin Catholic’s James Sitzmann, who Pereira beat in the NCS final at 145 pounds, is up 4-2 in the second period of his match.
9:40 am: Well, Nkunku put his best foot forward but eventually lost 6-5 in double overtime to Redlands-East Valley’s Pedro Vasquez. Great match. Also, my early nominee for the best name of the tournament, Red Bluff’s Sultan Beardsley, won his match. How cool is that name? Here’s your trivia question for the day too. What prominent journalist attended Red Bluff High?
9:25 am: The walking wounded wrestler, Mt. Diablo’s Milton Nkunku, is on the mat. He’s got a pad on his injured left knee but no brace, which is a good sign I think.
9:20 am: Cuneo’s actually trailing in the second period. Sorry for that one. Freedom’s Zack Wiley just got the call, but he’s all the way across the arena. That’s not helpful! As is normally the case, I’m joined in Bakersfield this year by Dean Coppola, who will be shooting photos for the paper. He’s down near the mats working his butt off right now. Maybe we’ll get some photos up later today.
9:20 am: Here’s a taste of what we’re dealing with.
9:15 am: De La Salle’s Vinny Moita is off to a flying start, picking up a technical fall win in his first match. Granada’s Tyler Cuneo is on the mat currently and is up 2-0 early.
9:10 am: Well, Flores lost 7-6. He had bottom position for the third period but couldn’t get the escape point he was looking for.
9 a.m.: Well, things seem to be off to a good start. Got my program, my brackets, a spot on press row (assigned seating this year). The honor of being the first local wrestler to hit the mat goes to James Logan’s Artemio Flores, who is currently wrestling a pigtail match at 103 pounds. It’s a nice sunny day outside, but I’m told we have rain on the way tonight. So there ya go, a weather update from SoCal.