Lompoc High wrestling survived three hours and five minutes of grappling on Wednesday, splitting its games against Nipomo and Santa Ynez, losing 42-24 to Nipomo and winning 48-20 against Santa Ynez.
The Braves especially fought off fatigue, clock and scoring issues and lastly injuries, as a trio of wrestlers either fell ill or sustained back and knee injuries.
“I thought we had a chance to beat Nipomo, but one guy goes down with an injury (Angel Reveles), so that’s six points for them. But with this one (against Santa Ynez), I think we had a little bit more momentum heading into this one,” Braves head coach Kyle Mayse said.
Against the Titans, the Braves' Humberto Garcia started things out with a key slam and pin fall victory over Amado Flores. Then, Nate Barcelona executed two reverse takedowns to win his contest by pin over Guillermo Arceo in the 126-pound division.
Austin Toal showed his resilient side, as the 132-pounder overcame a bite on his hand, then an injured back but refused to stop and used a key reversal to win by points against Klay Funez.
Vincent Michael (138) and Connor Hayes (152) scored the next two wins for the Braves, but the Titans took control of the mat from there.
Nipomo freshman Justin Burdick (170) scored a pin fall victory over James Braithwaitz. Nipomo then claimed two forfeit wins to add to the lead. And then, football star Isaac Bausley used the same bullish upper body strength that made him feared on the gridiron to gain the upper hand over Dechlan Sparrow, winning his match over the Brave by pin in the 182-pound class.
The most nail-biting contest of the night was Lompoc's Nick Jones versus Brandon Bausley in the 220-pound division, which went into overtime. Jones overcame a 4-2 deficit to edge Bausley.
“I liked that everyone wrestled tough tonight. We had a couple of upsets tonight. Lompoc is a tough team and they have a lot of good wrestlers. But I think we out-wrestled them today,” Nipomo head coach Victor Bryson said.
Once the lights dimmed inside Bryan Ayer Court for the next contest, Lompoc regrouped easily against the Pirates, winning seven of 10 live matches.
Luke Gardner scored the first win for the Braves in the 120-pound class over Chris Sanduto. Barcelona followed with his pin over Harrison Windmiller. Austin Toal (132) Anthony McKenna (145), Hayes, Sparrow and heavyweight Jacob Nunez were the last Braves to collect victories.
Nunez was the last grappler who brought the spectators and Brave coaches to their feet, as the freshman overcame a physical Milu Grano and pinned him in under one minute.
“That felt pretty good. He just gave it to me,” Nunez said. “He tried to throw me, but then I reversed it. It felt good, especially with how long it took. I felt more confident tonight.”
Not only did Nunez’s teammates and coaches embrace Nunez after his thunderous pin, but football teammate Shemar Savage also leaped into his arms and gave Nunez his exuberant praise.
Atascadero 58, Pioneer Valley 51 (OT)
The Greyhounds (5-1 PAC 8 League) moved into a tie for first place with an overtime win over the Panthers (1-5 PAC 8) Tuesday night at Atascadero.
Atascadero scored with less than a minute left to force overtime. The score was 46-46 after regulation.
Leo Partida-Ruiz tossed in eight 3-pointers for Pioneer Valley and scored a game-high 28 points. D.J. Martinez added 10.
Elijah Cooks and Kyler Warren both had 16 points for the Greyhounds.