The Panther wrestling team took to the mats for their first tournament of the year can came out very solid. Led by 3 finalists, the SCC grapplers finished 2nd to defending State Champions, Fresno City at the KLS Air Express Invitational Tournament held at SCC.
SCC had 8 wrestlers earn top 4 honors and 6 others in the top 6. With only 5 sophomores in the group and only one returning starter, this was a very good start to a young season by a group of young wrestlers.
Leading the way for SCC were Morgan Sauseda - 125 (Chico HS, SOPH), Carlos Alvarez - 149 (Folsom HS, SOPH) and Abel Garcia - 174 (Oakdale HS, FR). All finished in 2nd place. Carlos Alvarez had the hardest route to the finals as there were 22 wrestlers in his bracket.
By far this was the biggest weight. Carlos Alvarez went in seeded 3rd. After receiving a bye, he pinned his first 2 opponents. Carlos Alvarez then met #2 seed, Abraham Del Toro of Fresno in the semi. Carlos Alvarez jumped off to an early lead, and hung on for an 8-6 victory. In the finals, he met State #1 and defending Champion, Dylan Martinez of Fresno. Carlos Alvarez had a nice block and counter takedown to take the early lead, but Martinez methodically built a lead to take the championship.
Morgan Sauseda went in seeded #1 but came up short in the finals. After a bye, Sausey, as he is known, scored a tech fall and a decision to reach the finals. His semifinal match was very close but he won 3-2 over Greg Viloria of Delta, the #4 seed. Morgan Sauseda lost by decision in the finals to #2 seed Brandon Bettencourt of Fresno.
Abel Garcia was he third SCC finalist. He went in as the #1 seed. Again, we received a first round bye. Abel Garcia then won by fall and decision to reach the final. He lost a tough overtime match in the finals to #3 seed A. J. Cross of Chabot to finish out in 2nd place.
Trevor Mattox, seeded #6, started the day off with a 10-6 win over #3 seed Jacob Delgado of Fresno. He then lost a tough 7-4 match to Tyler Poalillo of Santa Rosa, the #2 seed. He bounced back with wins over teammates Felipe Lemus Servin and Enrique Zavala to take the bronze.
Dylan Crawford, seeded #7 started off the day with a quick fall over Carson Wood of Delta. He then lost a high scoring match to Zackary Franco of Skyline. Franco ended up in 2nd place. Dylan Crawford came back in the consolation bracket to rattle off 4 straight wins and the bronze medal. He had 2 falls and 2 majors along the way including wins over the #2 and #4 seeds to finish up his day.
Enrique Zavala was the #4 seed. His biggest win of the day was in the consolation semi, where he defeated #3 seed Jacob Delgado of Fresno in a shootout, 17-12. He then lost to teammate Trevor Mattox in the 3rd place match.
Salvatore Pochiero was the #6 seed and knocked off #3 seed Ray Aranda of Fresno for his first win. After losing 4-3 to #2 Seed Brandon Rullan of Delta, he won one more over teammate Robert Seronio before finishing out in 4th place.
Robert Sillas won his first two matches to make the semis as the #4 seed. He was upended by #1 see Tannen Soujian of Cuesta in the semi before getting a win in the conso semi. There he was beaten 8-5 by Tevin Bailey of Lassen.
Those finishing in a tie for 5th place as that match is not wrestled were: Felipe Lemus Servin – 133 (East Nicholas HS, SOPH), Robert Seronio – 141 (American Canyon HS, FR), Gabriel Freeman – 165 (Lower Lake HS, FR), Luis Ayala – 184 (Oakdale HS, FR), Beau Medicine Crow – 285 (Grant HS, FR) and Daniel Warden – 285 (Union Mine HS, FR). Both Ayala and Warden made the semifinals before losing the next two matches.
Others winning matches for the Panther team were: Jason Stokkeland – 149 (Calaveras, SOPH). Jason Stokkeland went 4-2 on the day. Savonn Sanders – 157 (Deer Valley HS, FR), Hunter LaRue – 157 (Napa HS, FR), Erick Pelayo-Moreno – 157 (Lower Lake HS, SOPH), Elijah Martin - 165 (Lancaster HS, FR), Cole Tigert – 184 (Vacaville HS, FR); and Robert Nickerson – 285 (Franklin HS of EG, SOPH).
The final team scores had Fresno City in 1st, Sac City 2nd and Bakersfield 3rd.
This week, the Panther wrestles travel to Lemoore, for the West Hills Tournament. This is one of the toughest of the season as most of the teams throughout the state will be there. It will start at 9 am on Saturday, September 23rd.