3 Nevada Union grapplers qualify for state
Three Nevada Union Miners have already qualified for the CIF Wrestling State Championships after one day of competition in the Sac-Joaquin Section Masters Tournament in Stockton.
Both NU senior Jacob Purdy and junior Robin Callas, who also qualified for the state finals in 2009, have again advanced to the semifinal round of the Masters to clinch a state berth. Also, already assured to join them is junior Tyler Szura, who is among the four wrestlers remaining in the hunt for first place in his weight class.
“I’m proud of the boys,” said NU coach Nick Saldivar. “To just make it this far is an accomplishment in itself.”
Action resumes at 9 a.m. today with consolation bracket wrestling, while the championship finals are slated to start at 3:30 p.m.
After the first day of action, Nevada Union stands 10th in team scoring with 48 points, while Vacaville (98.5), Elk Grove (81) and Oakdale (71) hold the top three spots.
Szura, who improved to 22-13 on the season, defeated Oakdale senior Wyatt Casey 13-4 in the 112-pound quarterfinals at Stockton Arena Friday night. Casey came into the Masters ranked second in the section, while Szura had received honorable mention.
Purdy (43-3), ranked third at 119 pounds, scored a 6-2 victory over fifth-ranked Marc O’Campo, a senior out of Rodriguez, to advance to today’s semifinal round.
Callas (44-7), the section’s second-ranked wrestler at 140 pounds, defeated Sheldon junior Laith Alnassiri 9-5 in Friday’s quarterfinal round.
Nevada Union senior Trevor Painter is the only other Miner still alive in the tournament. But after falling 6-2 in the 152-pound quarterfinals to second-ranked Oakdale junior Trent Noon, Painter still needs two more victories today to join NU’s trio of state qualifiers.
Six Miners have been eliminated. Seniors Abraham Fish (145 pounds) Kyle Newman (171) and Rafael Iriarte (215) did not advance to the second day of competition, while junior Michael Champagne (275), sophomore Julian Purdy (125) and freshman Sawyer Mosel (103) also had their seasons come to a close Friday in Stockton.
“It’s a tough tournament,” said Saldivar. “There are a lot of tough kids who are out and some of the boys got a taste of that. Some will be back, while for the others this is their last year.
“It’s that type of tournament. There are no second chances, really, and that can be a rough thing.”
Juan Gudino, Bear River’s lone wrestler qualifying for the Masters, also closed out his season on Friday. After the junior fell 10-6 in the first round, Gudino came back to score a pin in round two before bowing out by technical fall in his third match of the day.
“Juan did an amazing job and I look forward to his success next year,” said Bear River coach Kevin Figueroa.
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