Mountain View’s strength in numbers won out Wednesday at the 5A East Valley Region wrestling tournament at Mesa High School.
The Toros won their third straight region crown and fourth in the last five years, finishing with 180 1 /2 points and qualifying 13 of 14 wrestlers for state next week with only one individual champ.
Red Mountain finished second, rallying in the final round to edge Mesa for the runner-up spot. The Mountain Lions totaled 150 and Mesa took third with 143 1 /2. Red Mountain crowned the most region champs (five).
Winning region titles for Red Mountain were Greg Carbajal (103 pounds), A.J. Bartels (112); Robert Galvan (130); Jeff Ramsey (145); and Nathan Sare (189). Other local region winners were Mountain View’s David Jarman (119); Mesa’s Chris Freije (152) and Christian Gonzales (215); Skyline’s Nathan Merrill (171); and Dobson’s Vince Ornelas (140).
Highland continued its dominance, claiming the region title at Chandler High School.
Highland finished with 221.5 points and was followed by Gilbert (152), Hamilton (135.5), Mesquite (107.5), Casa Grande (57) and Chandler (57).
The most anticipated match of the night paired the state’s No. 1-and No. 2-ranked wrestlers, Zach Nicholson of Hamilton and Aaron Dahl of Highland. Dahl (125) recorded a 4-3 victory over the topseeded Nicholson.
Gilbert’s Adrian Rios (103) remained undefeated (35-0) with a technical-fall victory over Grant Cordner of Mesquite in 4:32. Mesquite’s John Evans took the 112-pound championship by upsetting top-ranked Russell Johnson of Highland by decision, 16-11.
The Hawks tallied another upset when third-ranked Lance Spurlock (135) defeated top-ranked Kyle Ellsworth of Chandler, by a 6-5 decision.
Highland’s Stetson Anderson (189) moved to 28-0 with a victory over David Vega of Chandler by technical fall in 3:22. Cory Lacy (152) tallied the fastest pin of the championships, pinning Highland’s Robert Mulvaney in 1:06.
Highland’s Ty Porter (215) was named the outstanding wrestler of the tournament after pinning Eric Cevedia of Casa Grande in 2:24.
The region finals ended with a bang, as Ben Schoonover (275) squeaked past Gilbert’s Ryan Brown 7-4. Schoonover improved his record to 39-1.
Highland and Hamilton will send a combined 23 of the region’s 42 wrestlers to the state tournament.
Alex Pavlenko and Alex Varela both notched victories to continue their undefeated seasons (39-0) as Marcos de Niza won its third straight region title Wednesday at Desert Vista High School.
Pavlenko defeated Corona del Sol’s Blaise Johnson 10-4 for his third region championship and Varela squeaked past Desert Vista’s Mark Franklin 7-6 for his fourth title.
The Padres scored 188 points, followed by Desert Vista (169) and Corona (148). Mountain Pointe finished fourth with 110.5 points and Yuma had 82.
Seven Marcos de Niza wrestlers captured individual titles, the most of any
The Padres may have had one more, but 171-pounder Maurice Turner was disqualified early in the first round, giving Desert Vista’s Josh Weaver the victory.
The closest match of the finals went right down to the wire as Yuma’s Steve Macias took down Desert Vista’s Tyler Burns with less than three seconds left for a 7-6 victory.
The top three wrestlers from each weight class advanced to the state tournament, so the consolation bracket was just as important as the championship.
Consolation bracket winners include Walon Pierce, Dave Gutierrez, Julio Pacheco, Brandon Phillips and Sam Hauptman from Marcos de Niza; Gary Kinder, Evan Estes, Robert Holbrook and Joey Featherman from Corona del Sol; Anthony Adame, Anthony Gonzales and Robert Downes from Mountain Pointe, and Phillip Smarik from Desert Vista.
- Correspondents Brian Knapp and Kyle Odegard contributed to this report.