ESCALON – To even make the A bracket at Escalon’s Lloyd C. Engel Invitational is an accomplishment. East Union’s Jaysen Reindel was accomplished Saturday, and then some.
After two first-round pins on Friday landed him in the toughest of five brackets on Saturday, the Lancers junior barely worked up a sweat, notching two-more first-round pins on the way to the 285-pound A-bracket championship.
“I faced some good opponents,” Reindel said. “It just came out in my favor this week.
“I believe this is my first time placing in this tournament – I know it is my first time in the finals.”
Other medal winners from East Union were Ruben Gallegos (third, 160 A bracket), Nicolas Sims (second, 195 B), Anthony Contreras (fourth, 145 B), Trinidad Diaz (first, 152 C), Jason Betlej (first, 132 C), Joe Luna (third, 138 C) and 138 Brandon Bean (third, 138 C)
Enrique Mendoza (126 A) and Ryan Austin (220 A) both went 3-0 on Friday for the Lancers, but Mendoza finished out of the money on Saturday and Austin was forced to withdraw due to injury default.
“That’s the good thing about this tournament,” East Union coach A.J. Reindel said. “You can bring your top dogs and they can get good competition and possibly get some hardware if they wrestle tough and you can bring some of your tough JV guys and maybe they can bring some hardware home.
“It’s a tournament for all levels and sometimes the new guys bring home more hardware than the veterans because the veterans get some tougher matches. I like the tournament.”
Lathrop’s Isaac Blase (195 A) finished third.
“It was a tough tournament,” Blase said. “I don’t like losing.
“But the guy I lost to on points Friday I pinned him today. It felt pretty good.”
This was the beginning of tournament season for the Spartans.
“This was our first two-day tournament this season and we had our ups and downs,” Lathrop coach Vince Garcia said. “The first day was kind of rough but the second day we came out and wrestled much better.
“We are pretty satisfied with the wrestling today but there is still a lot to work on.”
Dio Guitierrez (first, 145 D), R.J. Rodriguez (third, 145 D) and Troy Avila (third, 285 C) all placed for Manteca.
“Dom Day, Austin Arroyo and Tyler Welch didn’t place but they all wrestled themselves into the A bracket,” Buffaloes coach Mark Varnum said. “I think they got a lot from that level of competition.”