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Short-handed AHS grapplers come up short against Falcons

Alhambra’s Brandon West nearly closed out the win in his bout against College Park’s wrestler on Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2017. (MARK FIERNER / Martinez Tribune)
Alhambra’s Brandon West nearly closed out the win in his bout against College Park’s wrestler on Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2017. (MARK FIERNER / Martinez Tribune)

By GERARDO RECINOS
Martinez Tribune

The Alhambra wrestling team hosted the first of only two home dual meets on Wednesday evening, and who better to come to town for such an event than College Park.

The Falcons prevailed by a mark of 51-24, but the action on the night was close. Key forfeits hurt the smaller Bulldog team when it came down to the team score.

In junior varsity action, Kyle Pergakis got the night started off with a rough loss after looking like the stronger wrestler in the bout. In the first and second periods of the match, Pergakis outscored his opponent 5-0 with a pair of take downs and an escape. But in the closing seconds of the second period, his opponent reversed him and was able to get the pin with only 3.7 seconds on the clock.

Ryan Silva followed up his match and did the opposite.

Down 4-2 after the opening period, but rallied with an escape in the second, and a pin with only 13.9 seconds left in the third period for the win.

That match saw both players collect a pair of points on violations called by the official, however both boys scored points on multiple take downs.

In the varsity bouts, Mikey Gargaro opened the might against a tough opponent at 113 pounds. The Falcon wrestler busted out of the gate with three near falls in the first period alone after taking down the Bulldog wrestler.

College Park’s wrestler threatened to finish by technical pin after a reversal in the second period saw him collect 13 points. But with 1:14 on the clock he was able to get the pin and start the night off right for the Falcons.

With a series of forfeits proceeding the night’s opening bout, the Bulldogs were already in the hole before they got any type of roll.

Nate Winslow had an equally tough time with his opponent in the 145-pound division. He was only able to collect a pair of points on escapes in a period and-a-half of action. While his Falcon opponent was able to accrue six points in the opening period alone after nearly pinning his Alhambra opponent.

Eventually, with 1:06 on the clock he made it happen and pinned Winslow.

Fabian Garcia’s match in the 152-pound weight class was the first Alhambra win of the night, and returning North Coast Section competitor did it was style.

Before much time had passed the aggressive Garcia had already taken down his opponent and earned points for a near fall. While it seemed like the Falcon opponent was content to try and run out the clock, Garcia fought hard after what seemed like an eternity trying to get the referee’s whistle. But get it he did, with 23.5 seconds left on the clock in only the first round.

Garcia’s pin would’ve probably garnered a lot more praise for it’s swiftness in any other circumstance. But even he couldn’t match the effort that followed from teammate Dustin DeLuca.

The 160-pounder made such quick work of his opponent, that he didn’t score any points. DeLuca took only 23 seconds to get his pin and much needed points for his team. The win buoyed the Bulldogs, who still had a long road for a comeback.

Josh Bigness followed up next in the 172-pound weight class, which has always been tough.

Bigness struggled against his Falcon opponent, who took him down early in the first period. Twice the Falcon grappler nearly pinned his opponent, but the Alhambra wrestler was able to survive.

That survival wasn’t long, however. Bigness was pinned after a minute of brave battling.

That survival wasn’t long, however. Bigness was pinned after a minute of brave battling.

Neither Jet Noland or Kevin Marmolejo could get Alhambra their elusive third win on the night.

Noland struggled for nearly 30 seconds to fight off his opponent, but with only 8.9 left on the clock the referee blew for the pin. While Marmolejo nor his opponent managed to light up the scoreboard. The Falcon however did get the important points when he got his pin with on 25 seconds left in the third period.

In the final bout of the night, heavyweight Brandon West battled back and forth with his opponent. The two exchanged brief leads, but with nearly no time on the clock the Falcon wrestler scored the near fall, and the win for himself, and the team.

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