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Bordi following familiar path to Nationals
Manteca High alumnus Vince Bordi is ranked No. 7 among 197-pounders in the country and will compete in the NCAA Division II National Championships Friday. - photo by Photo courtesy of San Francisco State athletics
Vince Bordi has taken a familiar path to success in his final season for San Francisco State’s wrestling team.

Bordi, a 2006 graduate of Manteca High, will compete in the NCAA Division II National Championships at the University Nebraska starting Friday and will enter the event ranked eighth in the 197-pound weight class.

Much like his prep career, his rise was gradual and involved a drop in weight.

Flash back to his freshman year at Manteca when he went 0-25 as an out-of-shape 215-pounder. He dropped to 171 as a sophomore and gained confidence before moving back to up 215.

Bordi began his senior year in relative obscurity. He had a late jump to the wrestling season after helping the school’s football team capture the Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV championship.

He qualified for the sub-section tournament out of the Valley Oak League and advanced to the section meet, where his season was expected to end.

Bordi’s fifth-place finish, which was good for a berth to the California Interscholastic Federation State Championships, was a shocker, but he was not done yet.

At state, he continued to peak until reaching the championship round, where he lost to tournament favorite Ryan Flores of Buchanan. Bordi ended his senior campaign with a 39-9 record and was named the Bulletin’s Wrestler of the Year.

His Cinderella run captured the attention of San Francisco State and earned himself a scholarship.

But it was back to square one after that.

Bordi was 4-17 as a heavyweight his freshman year and improved to 5-9 as a sophomore.

He cut down to 197 for his junior season, and the effort paid immediate dividends. He was able to use his natural strength at the lower weight and went 18-17.

Now he is one of the country’s top D-II grapplers at 197.

Bordi (21-12) won an individual title by going 4-0 in the Fullerton Open in November. He went on to take second in the Menlo Invitational, the California Collegiates and the NCAA Division II Super Regional 4/Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Championships.

He also helped the Gators, ranked 16th in the NCAA Division-II state polls, go 3-0 by winning all of his matches in the Grand Canyon Duals in Phoenix.

Bordi begins Nationals against Mitch Knapp (29-5) of West Liberty State. He will be joined by San Francisco State teammates Naveed Bagheri (ranked third at 133), Josh Nolan (149), Zach Jimenez (184) and Steve Franklin (285).

Action begins at 11 a.m. central standard time.

Fellow Buffs earn All-American honors
Bordi isn’t the only former Buffalo having a banner senior year.

Benny Garcia (2004) and Brian Rohles (2005) and earned National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics All-American honors in different sports.

Garcia was one of four grapplers from Cal Baptist University’s second-year program to place in the top five for All-American honors at the 53rd Annual NAIA National Championships in Oklahoma March 6.

Garcia, a state qualifier in high school and state champ for Delta College, had a wild tournament in which he twice defeated top-ranked Sam Schmitz of Lindenwood.

Rohles was named to the NAIA Football All-American first team. The 6-foot-4, 275-pound offensive lineman for Minot State was also named the Dakota Athletic Conference Most Valuable Senior.

Former Lancer lights out
East Union graduate and four-time Bulletin All-Area Softball MVP Erin Arevalo is off to a hot start to her sophomore season for the University of Georgia.

On March 1, she was named the Southeastern Conference Pitcher of the Year for the second straight week.The staff ace is currently 11-1 with a tidy 0.53 ERA and 78 strikeouts in 66 innings pitched.

Nunnally named to all-Big West team
James Nunnally, a 2008 Weston Ranch graduate, was named to the Big West Conference men’s basketball second team Monday.

The UC Santa Barbara standout is averaging 16.8 points and 6.3 rebounds in league while helping the Gauchos earn a share of the championship with Pacific. Nunnally’s older brother, Mike, is the starting center at Pacific.

UCSB and UOP next play on opposite ends of the conference tournament semifinals Friday.