Truckee wrestling: Wolverines take on top-tier programs at Fernley Invitational
The Wolverines ran into some stiff competition last weekend at the Fernley Invitational, which featured five of the top 10 teams in the Sierra Nevada Sports Media Poll.
Truckee held its own with several impressive individual performances.
Junior co-captain Ricky Cooper (119 pounds) took third place in his weight division, battling his way through the championships bracket before losing in the semifinal match against a No. 1-seeded wrestler from a 4A school. Cooper lost in a close match, sending him to the consolation semi. He then pinned his opponent in the semi and repeated the feat in the consolation final against a Reno wrestler to earn third place.
Cooper is now ranked third in the 3A with a record of 30-8.
Wrestling at 152 pounds ” considered the toughest weight class in the state ” senior co-captain Bobby Waters placed sixth at Fernley for his lowest finish all season. Waters, wrestling sick, had to face Anderson from Chester, Calif., who ranks second in Northern California. (Anderson beat a three-time state champion from Oregon and was a Section Champ in 2008.)
Sickness and all, Waters wrestled a tough match.
With the scored tied 0-0 in the second period, Anderson scored a two-point takedown. Waters had his chance in the third period while he was riding him and cranking him over to nearly score. But time ran out and Waters lost 2-0.
Waters then lost an overtime match in the consolation semis against Manogue’s Albright, whom he faced in the final of another tournament. Waters is now 32-7 on the season and ranks second in the 3A.
Truckee junior Kyle Mullen placed fifth at Fernley in a loaded 130-pound weight class.
Mullen had to face Miller of Sparks in the later rounds. He wrestled Miller seven times last year, losing every meeting. But this year Mullen got his revenge, beating Miller on his feet by a final score of 6-4. Mullen is now 22-8 and ranks fifth in the 3A.
Truckee’s junior varsity team had a strong showing at McQueen in last Saturday’s JV Championships, as nearly every wrestler medaled. Overall, Truckee’s JVs won the championships with seven finalist and 11 medalist in all.
This year’s JV champions include Steven Baker, Dustin Gwerder and Carlos Ramirez. They are the first JV champions from Truckee in nine years.
Truckee’s runner-up finishers include Brooks Hudson, Alex Malo, Stein Retzlaff and Max Collinson, while other medalists include Scott Koper, Sal Tejeda, Alex Enger and Jack Hodges.
The match of the night went to Ramirez, the 160-pound champion, when he took on the 171-pound champ from Reno in an exhibition.
Everyone in the gym stopped what they were doing to watch this match-up. The Reno wrestler was a Western Regional Champion, which can be compared to a National Championship.
Ramirez was taken down before he scored a reversal and near-fall to take a 4-2 lead. His opponent then scored a two-point reversal and a takedown in the second period before Ramirez escaped to bring the score to 6-5. But with seconds remaining in the match, Ramirez got caught in a Cow Catcher move and was pinned.
Every coach and wrestler was impressed that he was even able to compete, let alone pull off leads in certain parts of the match.
“I was very pleased with the team,” said Truckee coach Danny Curtis. “They worked hard and showed Nevada that Truckee has the best JV and the brightest future.”
Dave Lade, head coach of the junior varsity, added that Truckee’s camaraderie was as impressive as its performance.
“Each of the wrestlers cheered for each other and came together as a unit,” Lade said.
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As another summer heads to Lake Tahoe, residents are finding ways to stay busy and one of the more popular activities to gain traction on both shores is pickleball.