Six boys from the Creekside Middle School wrestling program made the trip to Livingston High School on Feb. 13 to attend the Central Valley Classic wrestling tournament.
The event was a state qualifier, meaning that any wrestler who finished in a top-two spot would be granted the opportunity to compete at the 48th annual Nor Cal Tournament of Champions held at Del Oro High School in Loomis March 12.
Led by head coach Bobby Pierce and assistant coaches Evan Schut and Vicente Maese Sr., of the six varsity Panther grapplers in attendance, five boys finished in first or second place of their respective weight classes.
Eighth-grader Brian McGee defeated all of his opponents en route to a first-place finish in the 108-pound division.
Fellow eighth-grader Adrian Berrera won all of his matches leading into his finals bout in the 95-pound weight class before losing his last match, finishing in second place.
In the 103-pound division, seventh-grader Chase Mirelez put up a gutsy performance against his tough finals opponent, but was pinned in the third round of the match, forcing the Panther to settle for second place.
Sixth-graders Armin Perez and Jesse Cota both competed in the 89-pound division, and the two young Creekside wrestlers met in the finals to square off with one another for first place.
Cota got the best of Perez this go-around, pinning him in the second round to secure a first-place finish and leave second place for his teammate.
Capturing top-two positions in their respective weight classes, each of these young grapplers have earned the chance to compete at the Tournament of Champions March 12.
The doors will be open at 7:30 a.m. with matches starting at 8:45 a.m. Last year, the finals matches started at approximately 5:45 p.m.
Admission is $7 for adults, $3 for 12 to 18 years olds and seniors over 60. Those under the age of 12 get in free.
The tournament is only open to competitors in the sixth, seventh or eighth grade who qualified to enter the state finals through one of the various qualification tournaments across the state.
Patterson Irrigator sports: 892-6187 ext. 308, email@example.com.