Wrestling: Balers dominate Christopher, 51-18

The Balers' Christian Aguilar, seen here picking up an opponent earlier in the season, recorded a first-period pin in Wednesday night's league match against Christopher.

The San Benito High wrestling team took all of the drama out of Wednesday night’s Monterey Bay League Gabilan Division match against visiting Christopher. The Haybalers won nine of the first 14 individual weight classes en route to a 51-18 victory.
“I’m happy with the performance,” Balers coach Steven Salcedo said. “We went out there and executed well, and the kids stepped up to the challenge. The last couple of duals we’ve been kind of hesitant, but not today. The game plan was to go ahead and score first, be aggressive and use a front headlock when we could.”
San Benito, which improved to a perfect 4-0 in league duals, received wins from Edgar Campos (108 pounds), Christian Aguilar (115), Josh Martin (122), Fayz Yasin (128), Isaiah Morales (134), Ishmael Medina (140), Jonathan Mendoza (147), Matthew Ramon (154), David Gil (via forfeit at 162), Michael Camacho (195) and Tristian Medina (heavyweight).
Christopher, which dropped to 2-2 in the Gabilan Division, recorded individual wins from Adam Mena (172), Anthony Lopez (184) and Anthony Gomez (222). The Cougars are in a transition season after having a senior-dominated roster a year ago. Despite the score, Cougars coach Alecxis Lara felt good about his team’s performance.
“Some of the guys, even though they lost, definitely made an improvement on their feet game,” Lara said. “I tell guys all the time we wrestle for league, CCS and state. This is all practice from here to there.”
Then it proved to be a rather punishing practice for Christopher, which was competitive in several matches. However, the Balers were superior in terms of experience and depth, and they were flat-out dominant in a couple of contests. Heavyweight Tristian Medina recorded a pin 41 seconds into his match against Collins Okoronkwo, who lay motionless for several minutes before eventually being able to walk off the mat on his own power.
Medina used a Japanese arm spin to put Okoronkwo’s shoulder in an awkward position. In the 172-pound match, Mena utilized a chicken wing and half-nelson to pin Eric Fernandez with 1 minute, 7 seconds left in the third period. Lopez used a tilt, single leg shots and a half-nelson to win by pinfall over Juan Alcalan at 184. Gomez also won via pinfall over Miguel Puga in the 222-pound contest.
“They (Mena, Lopez and Gomez) wrestled great,” Lara said. “They came out confident and didn’t let the (team) score get in the way of their focus. Had we wrestled a little bit better, we would’ve been right there with them. But Hollister wrestled great today.”
Camacho was on his game, putting on a clinic in the 195-pound match against Ray Tapia. Ranked fourth in the Central Coast Section in the 182-pound division, Camacho showed an array of skills, including a duck under for a takedown and a front Russian headlock that he parlayed into a pin with 36 seconds left in the second period.
“Overall, I’m just really happy with the team,” Salcedo said. “They looked pretty solid. I know we still have a long way to go, but we’re getting there. Not too much to gripe about today.”

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