Miners head for section team meet
After wrapping up a third-straight Metro Conference championship Wednesday, Nevada Union’s varsity wrestling team turns its focus on the postseason, which officially begins with Saturday’s Sac-Joaquin Section Team Duals at Folsom High School.
The Miners, who finished 5-0 in the Metro, won’t find out who their opponent will be until Saturday morning’s seeding meeting between coaches. Each of the six Division I league champions will take to the mats, while the Central California Conference and Monticello Empire League will send their second-place teams in addition to each league’s champ.
Competition is slated to start at 10 a.m., with the semifinals scheduled to start at 1 p.m., followed by the championships at 5 p.m. General admission is $8 for adults and $5 for students.
“We’re definitely more of a tournament team than a dual-meet team,” said NU head coach Shane Valdez said. “We don’t have anyone at 215 and heavyweight, or at 125, so we’ll have three forfeits.
“That’s giving up 18 points. And against the caliber of competition we’ll see at this dual tournament, that’s a huge obstacle to overcome.”
Even if the Miners had those three spots filled, Valdez acknowledges that NU, as well as the rest of the teams in the section, would still be facing a mammoth roadblock to a championship in perennial powerhouse Vacaville.
The Bulldogs have won 12 Division I championships, including the last seven straight, a Sac-Joaquin Section record.
“We’d like to perform well this weekend,” Valdez said. “Everyone just has to do their job and take care of their match. That’s all we can ask for.”
Bear River, which finished third in the Pioneer Valley League did not qualify for the team duals, but will be back in action next Thursday in the PVL Tournament in Lincoln.
“We finished fourth in the league last year, but we have obviously improved since last year,” said Bruin head coach Robert Nebeker. “We’ve beaten all the other team in league, except Lincoln and Oakmont. And they’re the defending co-league champions.”
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