California Weekend Recap

Niauni Hill (Photo Lindenwood University-Belleville)

This article is brought to the wrestling community by TRI-TITANS. Tri-Titans athletic apparel brand is dedicated to bringing the absolute best in wrestling gear.

Four California Grapplers Earn Championships at WCWA Nationals
It was a good weekend for our grapplers in California as four of our grapplers won titles, and 18 others earn All-American honors. Two-time national champion Marina Doi, forfeited the championship match at 101-pounds, to her twin sister (Regina) winning her first national title. The twins then left their shoes in the middle of the mat, signifying retirement from further competition.

Dominique Parrish (123) won her first national championship by defeating fellow California grappler and teammate Alex Hedrick, 5-4. Parrish became a three-time All-Americans as she was second last year and third in 2016. Hendricks is coming off winning a CIF state title as she is only a freshman.

Senior Mallory Velte won her third consecutive WCWA national title at 143-pounds without allowing g a single point to be scored on her in the tournament all three years. The U.S.A. Senior World Team member Velte needed 6 minutes to dispatch second-ranked Alexis Porter of McKendree 10-0 in her longest match of the tournament. None of her other matches lasted longer than two minutes. She rolled through her opponents 54-0

Senior Niauni Hill, who completed a perfect 34-0 season with a National Championship in the 155-pound weight class, became Lindenwood-Belleville first national champion in program history. Hill opened her tournament three consecutive significant decisions.

In the semifinal round, Hill earned a hard-fought victory against Evonne Evien of Menlo College. In the championship match, Hill trailed 3-2 after the first period against Tatum Sparks of the University of Providence but battled back in the second period to take a 6-5 lead late in the bout. An unsuccessful challenge by the Providence coaching staff gave Hill a 7-5 lead, and when the final buzzer sounded, she earned her first National Championship.

Vikings Captures a Second CIF Southern Section Girls Wrestling Championships
For a second consecutive year, the Northview wrestling squad won the prestigious CIF Southern Section Girls Championships with 169 points and six state qualifiers. The lone champion in the tournament for the Vikings was Angelina Gomez (101) who claim her second section championship by pinning Fargo All-American Sofia Martinez (Ayala) in five minutes and fifty-five seconds of their championship match.

Joining Gomez in the finals of the tournament was teammate Julia Padilla (143). Padilla was the No. 2 seed in her weight class and one of the favorites to challenge for an individual championship along with Gomez. Padilla pinned her first three opponents, before earning a hard-fought 6-4 win over the No. 3 seed Chloe Brelman of Huntington Beach in the semifinal round. In the finals, Padilla was upset by No. 4 seed Lorena Egea (University) in three minutes and two seconds of their championship match.

Other place winners for Northview included Alexis Medina (111) fourth, Aleena Gomez (116), Fourth, Anatli Smalley (160) third, and Mia Sandoval (170) in fourth place. Corona High finished as the runner-up with 159 points, followed by Hillcrest 89 ½, Millikan 79, and Paramount with 72 points to round up the top five teams.

Third Time Is the Charm for San Pascual High
After finishing third in the team standings the last two seasons at the San Diego Section Girls CIF, the San Pascual wrestling squad was successful in claiming the team title for the first time in school’s history. The Golden Eagles had seven medal winners and a champion in Emily Velazquez (191); Vasquez pinned all three foes she faced, with none passing the first period.

San Pascual scored 148 ½ points and was followed by Otay Ranch (115 ½) Clairemont (111) Brawley (103) and Westview (102). The San Diego section only qualifies the top two wrestlers per weight class, which means that Vasquez will be making the trip to Visalia by the coaching staff and herself to compete at the CIF state tournament in two weeks.

Isabella Schutz (128), Gabriela Grimaldo (133), and Belen Merino (152) placed third and had another opportunity to compete at the state tournament if they would’ve won the second-place challenge match. However, none of the three athletes won their match, and they settle for third place. Esmeralda Santiago (123), Mariaelena Sanchez (145), Brianna Reyes (235) placed fifth in the tournament.

Albany Wrestlers Win 2018 NCS/OS Girls Wrestling Championship
The Albany wrestling team captured the 2018 NCS/OS Girls Wrestling Championship title Saturday at home, qualifying six wrestlers for the upcoming state meet in the process. The Cougars had a lone champion in Joanna Qiu (137). The top three finishers in each weight class qualified for state tournament in Visalia.

Qiu finished the tournament with a 4-0 record on the weekend as she recorded two falls, an 8-0 major decision, and a 4-1 decision in the finals over Mari Johns of Las Lomas. Other finalists for the Cougars were Natalia Urbas (126) and Francesca LoPresti at 143-pounds. Both athletes finished the event with a 3-1 record to place second and help Albany claim the team title.

Other place winners for the Cougars include Jennifer Yang (101) sixth, Artemisia Matera (106) fourth, Gurleen Bhullar (111) fourth, Tatiana Lee (116) sixth, Hailie Gillis (121) third, Itzel Galaviz (131) third, Maria Patino (150) third, and Ehireme Ohens (160) fifth.
James Logan (164) finished in second place, followed by Newark Memorial (158), Castro Valley (107), and Kelseyville (99).