Nearly 500 youth wrestlers converged on Oakdale High School’s gyms to compete at the SCWAY Oakdale Jr. Classic on Sunday, Dec. 13 at one of SCWAY Zone 2’s most challenging tournaments.
The Escalon Wrestling Club (EWC) was represented by 31 of those grapplers with 12 of them placing. The Middle School age wrestlers in the Advanced Division were also competing for a berth in the prestigious NorCal Tournament of Champions (TOC) on March 12 at Del Oro High School in Loomis. The top three placers in each weight class qualified. EJ Lewis earned his spot in the TOC with a dominant showing by taking home a custom made championship singlet for his efforts. The EWC had an impressive six champions overall with five in the Advanced Division and one in the Beginner Division.
Joining Lewis in the Advanced group was his brother, Ryan Lewis, as well as Jamin Miller, Ramon Hinojosa and Alex Gutierrez. All were in age groups that were too young to compete at the TOC. Taylor Rowe collected his second straight gold medal in the Beginner Division by dominating his opponents.
Advanced Division placers included 2015 SCWAY state runner-up Luca Cerasi (2nd) and Sammy Hinojosa (2nd). Placing in the Beginner Division was Jimmy Auble (2nd), Griffin Gerber (3rd), Frankie Rodriguez (3rd) and Thomas Rowe (4th).
EWC wrestlers will have another chance to join Lewis and qualify for the elite TOC at the EWC’s own SCWAY tournament to be held on Jan. 10 at Escalon High School. Next up for the Club is a tournament at Hilmar High School on Dec. 20. That meet will be smaller in scope and provide a great opportunity for EWC competitors to earn a medal.