Tyler Takeda/The Madera Tribune
Madera South’s Auggie Garcia records a takedown over Pioneer-San Jose’s Daniel Woo in the 162 finals at the Chukchansi Invitational at Madera South. Garcia defeated Woo, who was ranked No. 10 in the state, on an escape with 11 seconds in the match to capture the championship Saturday.
In just a short time, the Chukchansi Invitational at Madera South is billed as one of the top early season tournaments on the high school wrestling schedule.
After missing the team podium last year, the Madera South Stallions wrestling team returned to the podium with a third place finish after Buchanan and Frontier-Bakersfield.
“We were right there with Buchanan and Frontier,” head coach Sal Gonzalez said. “They are top teams in the section. I can’t complain coming in after those two teams.”
More than 50 teams converged at Madera South over the two-day tournament.
“It gets better and better every year,” Gonzalez said.
Auggie Garcia, at 162 pounds, and Dylan Miracle, at 172 pounds, each won individual championships for the Stallions. Garcia was also named one of three Outstanding Wrestlers.
“We had a few guys that just missed some places the last couple of years to get those places this year,” Gonzalez said. “It was great to have Auggie and Dylan win championships.”
Meanwhile, the Madera Coyotes didn’t get a wrestler to the finals, but had several earn spots on the top 8 podium.
“I think they did well,” Madera assistant coach James Cook said. “We have a really young team. A lot of the basic stuff they were missing on, they are picking up quick. They are very coachable. It’s kind of like fresh clay. We’re able to mold them.
“We had Lemoore last week and we were able to find a lot of errors. Since they are young, we are able to fix the problems as a team rather than individualized. A lot of the problems we had last week were solved and turned around. I’m excited to see how much better they get in the upcoming weeks.”
The Liberty Hawks, in their first tournament of the season, didn’t get a wrestler to the podium, but head coach Jay Pumarejo was not discouraged.
“For our first tournament, we did well,” he said. “We did better at this tournament than we did at the same time last year.”
At 115 pounds, Madera’s Jonathan Solorio defeated Liberty freshman Anthony Salas in the second round. Solorio added a 12-0 victory in the quarterfinals before losing by pin in the semifinals.
Solorio won his first match in the consolation round, 6-5, but lost in the consolation finals to place fourth.
Madera’s Mario Moreno won four matches in a row to win the consolation championship. With a 2-0 lead heading in to the third period, Moreno got a near fall to add to his lead, but suffered a reversal for a 5-2 final.
At 140 pounds, Madera South’s Florencio Hernandez pinned his first two opponents but lost a 2-1 decision to Buchanan. In the consolation rounds, Hernandez won by a 6-5 decision and a 6-2 decision to head to the consolation championships.
He earned a point with 14.5 seconds left in the second period on an illegal hold to tie the match at one. He got an escape in the third period to win the match, 2-1, for third place.
Madera South’s Juan “Ricky” Garcia pinned his first two opponents and then earned a technical fall (17-2) in the quarterfinals at 145 pounds. He used a seven-point third period to advance to the finals with a 12-8 semifinal victory.
In the finals, Garcia recorded three escapes and got as close as 8-5 with a minute left in the match, but his opponent recorded a reversal for a 10-5 decision.
Madera South’s Roman Guillen won three straight matches to advance to the medal round. After a loss, Guillen lost a 5-0 decision to place eighth at 154 pounds.
In his first three matches, Madera South’s Auggie Garcia recorded a pin, a technical fall (16-1) and a major decision (16-6) to advance to the 162-pound semifinals.
Garcia jumped out to a 7-2 lead after an escape and a takedown in the second period. He allowed to escapes before recording another takedown with 43 seconds left in the match to secure a 9-5 decision to advance to the finals.
In the finals, Garcia trailed 10th ranked and top seed Daniel Woo of Pioneer, 2-1, at the end of the first period. He got two takedowns, with the latter coming with three seconds left for a 7-5 lead heading into the third.
Garcia allowed an escape and a takedown to trail 8-7 with a minute left in the period. An illegal hold was called on Woo for putting two hands on his head with 18 seconds left in the match. Garcia then escaped from Woo with 11 seconds left to win the 162-pound championship, 9-8.
Garcia’s teammate Ricardo Adame, at the 162 pound weight class, won three matches in a row in the consolation round. After a loss, Adame jumped out to a 6-2 lead in the seventh/eighth place match. He allowed a reversal at the end of the period and was called for stalling with five seconds left, but held on for a 6-5 decision to place seventh.
Miracle, ranked No. 8 in the state, pinned his first opponent, recorded a 23-10 major decision in the quarterfinals and won by another major decision to advance to the finals against Firebaugh’s Arthuro Rivas, ranked No. 6 in the state. In the semifinals, Miracle recorded seven takedowns and allowed five escapes, which accounted for all of his opponent’s points.
Miracle recorded a takedown with 16 seconds left in the first period for an early 2-0 lead in the finals.
He got a takedown and recorded a near fall with 18 seconds left in the second period for a 6-1 lead. Miracle added an escape and a takedown for a 9-1 lead in the third period. He allowed an escape and was called for a stalling penalty, but won the match 9-3 for his second straight Chukchansi title.
Madera’s Rangel Miranda won three straight matches in the 222 pound consolation round, two by pinfall. He lost his fourth match and lost, 3-2, in his next match to place eighth.
Taking almost the same route as Miranda, Madera heavyweight Isaiah Hernandez won three straight matches to advance to the medal rounds. He won his last match on a disqualification and lost by pinfall in the seventh place match to place eighth.