NACHES - "We knew it would be close, knowing what Naches has done this season," said Mabton Coach John Kilian of this past Saturday's dual against the Rangers.
The Vikings earned the 39-32 victory, however, forfeiting only one match at 112 lbs.
"It was good for both teams and Naches challenged us," said Kilian.
Saturday's winn closed out the regular season. Mabton finished 4-2 against SCAC West opponents.
Saturday's dual began with the 103 lb. weight class. Mabton's Jerry Quesada dominated Jason Tellez and earned an early pin in 1:19.
Daniel Magallon of the Vikings (119 lbs.) won a 7-1 decision over Jesse Fredricksen. Six of his points were by takedown and Kilian said, "It was not a squeaker."
At 125 lbs., Viking Luis Aviles took Francisco Rodriguez of the Rangers down and got Rodriguez on his back in the first round. Rodriguez was able to overcome the Viking and the two battled into the second round. Aviles was leading 7-0 when he pinned Rodriguez at the 2:42 mark.
Mabton's Eric Meza (130 lbs.) earned another victory. "He tried for the pin and had Jr. (Cabrera) on his back three times for near falls, but couldn't close the deal," said Kilian. Meza may not have gotten the pin, but he won a 14-2 decision over Cabrera.
"It's hard as a coach because you know they can get the pin, but you don't want them to make silly mistakes," he commented on Meza's performance.
Tyler Slick of the Rangers was pinned in 1:24 by Mabton's Arturo Nunez (135 lbs.), and Kilian said Nunez handled the Naches grappler easily.
At 140 lbs., Andy Rivera of Mabton won a 12-6 decision over Jacob Frazier of Naches. Rivera had five takedowns in the match and Kilian said Frazier is a good, solid grappler.
"The only way for Andy to score was to let him up and take him down," he recalled.
The first Viking to be pinned was Alonso Garcia (145 lbs.). Garcia was winning the match 15-6 when he was caught and pinned by J.D. Ring at the 4:48 mark.
Frank Martinez of Mabton (152 lbs.) got the first takedown in his match against Kyle Rosen of Naches. Unfortunately, the tides turned and Rosen earned the victory, pinning Martinez in 3:46.
Viking Emilio Mireles (160 lbs.) took to the mat against Cody Gerard of the Rangers and lost a 16-0 decision. Kilian said the match was Mireles' first this season and the Viking was bumped up a weight class to fill a spot on the roster.
Earning his second technical fall in two duals was Mabton's Angelo Salinas (171 lbs.). Salinas grappled with Naches' Alberto Pizano for the 19-3 victory.
"Angelo works hard for his wins and with just seconds left on the clock, he got a three-point near fall," Kilian recounted.
In the 189-lb. weight division, Sal Lopez of Mabton pinned Ranger Jason Schuler in 2:32. Kilian said the battle was exciting with both grapplers trading points. Just before Lopez pinned Schuler, the score was 8-7 in favor of the Viking.
Damien Marquez of the Vikings (215 lbs.) lost in overtime to Logan Robert. The final score was 5-3 and Kilian said he has a feeling the duo will see one another again at SCAC West Districts this coming Saturday in Zillah.
Viking Eric Huesca (285 lbs.) was pinned in 3:02 by Ashton Gottschalk of Naches. "Eric took a beating and was in over his head," Kilian commented, crediting Huesca for making it into the second round of the match.
He said this coming Saturday he expects some close matches at Districts. He said he anticipates some good battles on the mat.