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Seven advance to divisional semifinals

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Seven advance to divisional semifinals

Lathrop High 120-pounder Alex Garcia, pictured picking up Center’s Darius Baza during the Cougar Duals at Weston Ranch on Dec. 14, is a win away from returning to the Sac-Joaquin Section Division I...


POSTED February 22, 2014 12:28 a.m.



Alex Garcia and Lucas Widmer are back in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV semifinals, where they will be joined by Manteca heavyweight Steven Martinez today at Vista del Lago High in Folsom.

In Delhi, four Ripon grapplers will begin Day 2 of the SJS Division V Tournament in the semifinal round.

The top four placers in both tournaments advance to next week’s SJS Masters Tournament held annually at Stockton Arena.

Lathrop High’s Garcia and Widmer of Sierra are both a win away from reaching their second straight divisional final. Doing so again would likely set them up with rematches against Oakdale standouts. Trevor Williams pinned Garcia for the Valley Oak League’s 120-pound title last week, while Frankie Trent outpointed Widmer 3-0 in the 172 finale.

Martinez was awarded a first-round bye Friday and won his lone match to make the semifinals. Weston Ranch 220-pounder Cody Simerley failed to make weight and was denied another chance at divisional gold. Like Garcia and Widmer, Simerley lost his title-round bout in the 2013 Division IV tourney.

Ten other area wrestlers remain in the hunt for Masters berths, but with already a loss against each of them they must win out to get in.

Jason Betlej (106), Jesus Vasquez (145) and Nick McGill (195) are still alive for East Union. McGill squares up with a familiar foe this morning in Sierra’s Julian Semenza, whom he has already beaten twice.

Manteca High’s Cameron Flores (113) and Matt Wilkerson (220) are also battling in the consolation brackets. Weston Ranch has four who are still in the running: Uriel Saldivar (120), Brendan Curtwright (126), Andrew Olaya (132) and Marc Carganilla (182). Olaya was the only Manteca Unified grappler to capture a VOL championship last weekend.

For Ripon, Trans-Valley League 128-pound titlist Edgar Gonzales is one of four Indians who are in prime positions in to punch tickets to Masters. He is joined by Javier Hernandez (140), Gabe Barnett (147) and Tristan Smith (222). Matt Fisher (106) and David Goforth (285) are in the consolations..

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