FAIRFIELD — The Rodriguez High wrestling team came through in a big way – literally.
Trailing 24-23 with just the four heaviest weight classes to go, the Mustangs secured three pins and a forfeit to pull away and defeat Armijo 47-24 Wednesday night.
Danny Charos’ pin at 170 pounds gave the Indians their 1-point advantage, but Rodriguez’s Henry Medeiros (182) recorded a pin with just 14 seconds left in the third period, Mark Papish (195) won by forfeit, Patrick Ferrer won with a pin in the second period and Anthony Ishaq (285) recorded a pin with just 24 seconds to wrestle to help the Mustangs pull away.
“That’s where a bunch of our seniors are,” Rodriguez coach Mike Clarkston said of his heavier wrestlers. “We were kind of spread out in the middle (weight classes), but I thought everyone wrestled pretty tough. This is the first time we’ve had everybody back. We have some guys not 100 percent, but at least they were good enough to wrestle tonight. It was nice to see everyone together.
“I think (Armijo) is a lot tougher (in the lower weights). It was back and forth the whole time. (The Indians’) Darius (Levan) and Terrance (Saeteurn) are really tough. They should make some noise in the postseason. They have a bunch of (lower weights) that can train together and beat each other up and I have a bunch of big boys that can get together and beat each other up.”
Armijo opened an early 8-0 lead with major decisions by Levan (106) and Saeteurn (113), but the Mustangs’ Brandon Vu (120) and Greg Papish (126) recorded pins to give Rodriguez an 12-8 advantage.
The Indians’s Hayden Scibek (132) knotted the score at 12 with a 10-2 decision before Armijo took the lead again 15-12 after Dennis Mattiuzzi won a hard-fought 10-8 decision over Jasiah Sta Maria.
The Mustangs’ Ralph Carios (145) won by fall for a 17-15 Rodriguez advantage, but Armijo regained an 18-17 lead when Jorge Perez (152) won a close 8-6 decision over Jacob Cross.
Rodriguez’s Josh Weiss (160) won by fall to give the Mustangs a 23-18 lead, but the back-and-forth battle continued when the Indians’ Danny Charos (170) won by pin to give Armijo its last lead at 24-23.
Indians coach Cesar Correa was pleased knowing the score wasn’t really as lopsided as it ended up.
“We knew we had some good matches in there,” Correa said. “But we knew once they hit (182 pounds), they would be tough. We needed to build a lead (before then). I thought maybe we had a chance at heavyweight, because anything can happen at heavys, but (Ishaq) wrestled (Kris) Elkin well. We won the matches that we should have won. It was (close) up to 170s.”
Reach Brian Arnold at 427-6969 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/barnolddr.