Sierra junior Branden Rullan and Ripon senior Tristan Smith competed Friday in the California State Wrestling Championships at Rabobank Arena in Bakersfield, but neither advanced to today’s competition.
After winning by forfeit to start the day, Rullan (120 pounds) pinned Sam Camacho of Birmingham in the second period. Orland’s Yonathan Esquivel then pinned Rullan in the first round, sending the Sierra junior to the consolation bracket.
Faced with elimination, Rullan took a 7-1 decision over Gladstone’s Mario Barlos before losing to American’s Jared Luty via a second-round pin, ending his season.
“Branden made his school, family and coaches proud,” Timberwolves coach Alex Nuanez said. . “He wrestled outstanding.
“He left it all on the mat and walked out with his head high. He found out what needs to be done to make a return next year.”
Smith barely worked a sweat up in his opening match, downing Galileo’s Kenneth Kwan with a 40-second pin. Jarrod Snyder of Frontier – who earned a spot in the semifinals and is guaranteed a medal – then downed Smith with a 4-0 decision.
Needing to win two matches in the consolation bracket to advance to today, Smith lost 3-1 to Reedley’s Ricky Garcia, ending an illustrious career for the Indians senior.
“He won one and lost two,” Ripon coach Glen White said. “We were happy that he was able to get to this point, but we were definitely hoping for more.
“He wrestled hard and gave it everything he had and that’s all you can do.”