A Wednesday night Trans-Valley League match went Escalon’s way, and the wrestlers were busy over the weekend as well, finding some tournament success.
Hosting the Yellowjackets on Jan. 27, the JV Cougar wrestlers took a 36-13 win off the mats to improve to 4-1 in league action.
“Best matches of the night were Ethan Krieger, who won at 132 pounds, and Izaac Sipma, who lost but wrestled well at 138 pounds, taking a 3-1 loss,” said head coach Derek Scott.
For the varsity on the night, they improved to a 5-0 mark in TVL, handing the visiting Hilmar team a 56-12 defeat.
Toughest loss on the night came for wrestler Alex Jimenez, who was winning by an 8-1 tally and got pinned with just three seconds left in his match at 113 pounds.
But there were more bright spots than tough losses, said Scott, with solid efforts from Kyle Jimenez, winning by pin at 120 pounds in coming back from an injury, and Rhys Panero getting a win by pin at 126 pounds, also having to deal with injuries this season.
“Livius Seung won by decision at 132 pounds, Trenton Busch won by fall at 138 pounds,” said Scott.
Fabricio Gallo was a winner by pin at 145 pounds, quickly taking control of his match and then getting the fall when his opponent had to withdraw due to injury. Hugo Alcala won by decision at 152 pounds.
“The most exciting match for us was at 195 pounds, Stephen Mendez got an 8-4 win against a kid who had beaten him before,” said Scott.
At heavyweight, Daniel Gonzalez got a win by pin for the Cougars.
On Saturday, Jan. 30 both the JV boys and the Lady Cougar wrestlers went to the Enochs Tournament, where both squads found some success.
“For the girls, Adela Ley-Han went 2-1 and took second place at 101 pounds and Mikayla Vega went 3-0 and took first place,” Scott said. “They didn’t wrestle each other; they were in two different brackets.”
Escalon had 11 wrestlers in the JV tournament and five of them came home with medals, noted Scott.
“This was the toughest JV tournament of the year,” the coach said.
Fourth place medalists were Julian Gutierrez, 2-2 at 160 pounds; Alfredo Zarate, 2-2, 170 pounds. Taking third place honors were David Ryan, 3-1, 160 pounds; Zac Freeseha, 3-1, 182. Top medalist for the Cougars was Ethan Krieger, who took second place with a 3-1 mark at 132 pounds.
Now, the team gears up for the regular season finale and postseason action.
“It’s a very important week,” Scott said. “Wednesday (Feb. 3) will be our Senior Night against Mountain House, with the JV at 6:30 p.m., varsity at 7:30 p.m.”
On Friday and Saturday, the girls go to their Section duals at Enochs, while the varsity boys go to the Section team duals Saturday at Lincoln High School in Stockton.
“We’ll go in as the number one seed in the TVL,” Scott said.