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Sierra sophomores pin down medals at frosh-soph tourney
Sierra High sophomore Alex Nuanez claimed the Frosh-Soph Folkstyle State Tournament championship at 171 pounds this weekend. - photo by File Photo
Sierra High sophomores Alex Nuanez and Aiden Foster got a good idea of where they stand against wrestlers their own age Friday and Saturday in the California USA Wrestling Frosh-Soph Folkstyle State Championships at Selland Arena in Fresno.

Nuanez was a match away from advancing to the Sac-Joaquin Section Masters Tournament’s second day this past winter season, but he left his mark in Fresno with a first-place finish in the 171-pound bracket.

Foster finished seventh at 152.

Weston Ranch junior varsity coach Seth Davis, a former standout at Manteca High, took six area grapplers with him to Fresno.

Nuanez wrestled at 160 during the high school season, but Davis said he weighed in two pounds over the limit. That apparently didn’t faze him at all.

“Alex told me earlier in the year that his goal was to make it to (the California Interscholastic Federation State Wrestling Championships) as a sophomore, and win it all by his senior year,” Davis said. “For him to go up a class and wrestle guys at least 10 pounds heavier than him shows me he can do it.

“He didn’t want to cut the weight, because he wanted to test himself against bigger competition.”

Davis, who said there were roughly 100 competitors signed up in each of the 14 weight classes, had a few of his own turn in respectable performances.

Weston Ranch’s Daniel Guzman finished 3-2 at 103, and 135-pounder Daniel Garcia was eliminated in the quarterfinal round. Garcia was 5-2 and was a win away from placing.

“In talking to (Weston Ranch head coach) Pat King, we would have been happy to have a couple of our guys make it to the second day,” Davis said. “The big thing was for us to expose them to that type of big-time-wrestling environment. There were probably about 1,500 people there just to compete, so it was good for these guys at their age to see what that’s like.”

— Jonamar Jacinto