Eagle wrestlers continue to soar, place fourth at Holtville

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Granite Hills High School sophomore Collin Guffey continued his breakout season by winning his 134-pound weight class at last weekend’s 58th annual Holtville Rotary Invitational tournament.

The Granite Hills High School wrestling team continues to gain momentum as the season quickly heads into postseason competition.

“Our goal for CIF is to get all 14 wrestlers qualified for Masters,” said Granite Hills head coach Jesse Sheard, whose team wrapped up an undefeated league dual meet season to win its fifth league championship. “For Masters our goal is to get a handful of kids qualified for state. We have two weeks until CIF; we are going to fix some things and get ready to compete.”

The Eagles finished fourth as a team at last weekend’s twoday 58th annual Holtville Rotary Invitational — second best behind Rancho Bernardo among San Diego County teams in the 31-team field. The Broncos led the tourney with 307 points, followed by Imperial Valley power Brawley with 202 points in second place and KOFA Yuma with 187.5 points in third place.

Granite Hills tallied 172.5 points to place ahead of tournament host Holtville, which finished fifth with 141.5 points.

Sophomore Collin Guffey continued his breakout season after finishing first in his 134-pound weight class. He was among seven Granite Hills mat men overall who earned place-finishes at the long-standing event.

Devon Wells (128), J.J. Suetos (140) and Zach Waterhouse (147) all finished third in their respective weight classes while Camren Carmickle (115) and Geo Fraser (128) both placed fifth. Ryan Carroll (122) finished sixth.

Guffey, who finished 4-0 in the tournament with three pins, recorded a 4-1 decision over Rancho Bernardo’s Marcus Caro in the championship round.

In a trio of third-place matches:

  • Wells posted a tight 1-0 decision over Rancho Bernardo’s Brayden Concepcion.
  • Suetos recorded a 7-0 decision over St. Augustine’s Blaze Ackerman.
  • Waterhouse pinned Canyon Crest Academy’s Jonathan Saenz in 3:27.

Waterhouse finished 5-1 with four pins, including two in the first period.

Wells finished 5-1 in six matches with three pins.

Suetos finished 4-1 with two pins.

In fifth-place matches:

  • Carmickle won by a 16-0 technical fall over KOFA’s Jose Moreno.
  • Fraser won by a 4-0 decision over KOFA’s Jose Minjivar.

Carroll lost by a 3-1 decision to Santana’s Jessie Hernandez in his medal-round match.

Fraser notched five wins, including two falls, in seven matches.

Carmickle racked up three pins and one technical fall in six matches.

Carroll had three pins in six matches, including two pins.

Mat attack

The girls wrestling divisionals will once again consist of two tournaments, followed by a state-qualifying Masters event.

The boys wrestling divisionals will feature four tournaments, followed by the state-qualifying Masters tournament.

Both boys and girls wrestlers will compete alongside each other as the state championship tournament returns to the schedule.

The girls section tournaments are scheduled to take place Feb. 5. The Division I tournament is slated for San Pasqual High School while Brawley High School will host the Division II finals.

Each tournament will include 16-person draws, with the top four place-finishers in each tournament receiving medals. Competition is slated to start at 9 a.m. Finals are projected to start at 5 p.m. or later.

Awards will be presented to the team champion and runnerup in each division.

The girls Masters meet is scheduled Feb. 11 at Alliant International University. The top four place-finishers from both the Division I and Division II tournaments qualify. Competition is slated to start at 1 p.m. with finals and consolation rounds following at 5 and 6 p.m.

The top four wrestlers in each weight class will receive medals while the top three place-finishers in each weight class will advance to the state tournament. The state tournament is a three-day event from Feb. 24-26 in Bakersfield.

Divisional boys tournaments are scheduled to take place Feb. 12 at four sites. Rancho Bernardo High School will host the Division I tournament while Poway High School will host the Division II tournament. Ramona will host the Division III tournament while Valley Center will host the Division IV tournament. Each tournament will include 16-man brackets.

The top seven place-finishers at the Division I and Division II tournaments will receive medals while the top six wrestlers at the Division III tournament will receive medals. The top four place-winners at the Division IV tournament will receive medals.

Divisional tournaments are projected to start at 9 a.m. with finals starting at 5 p.m. or earlier.

The Masters state-qualifying tournament is set Feb. 18-19 at Christian High School in El Cajon.

The tournament is scheduled to start at 9 a.m. on both days. Finals are scheduled to start at 1:15 p.m. or earlier on the second day.

Awards will be presented to the top four individual place-finishers as well as awards to the champion and runner-up teams.

Eagle wrestlers continue to soar, place fourth at Holtville

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