DP grapplers stay on top of Royals at Thunderhut

If San Marcos’ wrestling team was going to end its decades-long losing streak against Dos Pueblos, this was the year. It would have taken an upset, but it was within reach.

The Chargers made sure that didn’t happen, though, winning some close bouts en route to a 42-22 victory at the Thunderhut Tuesday.

“If you lose the mental battle you lose it all. I’m disappointed, because I felt this year was our chance to get a win,” said Royals coach Tony Becerra. “Our plan was to come out and wrestle our style, but we ended up getting into their style.”

San Marcos star Zach Belway came out and nabbed a pin at 1:16 in the 171-pound class to win the night’s first match. Putting Belway up first was San Marcos’ attempt to set the tempo, but Joseph Story reversed that at the buzzer in the second match of the night.

Story, DP’s 189-pound senior, turned a 10-9 loss into an 11-10 win with a two-point heave at the buzzer of the third round against Julian Lake. DP coach Anthony Califano called it “the win of the night” for the Chargers.

“I just told myself I had to do it, no matter what. I just had to,” said Story of his buzzer-beating win, which had the Dos Pueblos bench fired up.

San Marcos had a thrilling win of its own in the heavyweight division, where first-year wrestler Luis Urbina was trailing DP’s CIF placer from last year, Nick Wagner, before turning the tide with a pin at the end of the second round.

“I just told him not to quit and he executed his move. I’m really proud of him,” said Becerra.

With only five pins total between both teams on the night, it came down to close decisions.

“My hat’s off to San Marcos and Tony Becerra. That was a good match,” said Califano, who wrestled for the Royals when he was a student at San Marcos.

The top two teams from the Channel League make the postseason, and with Ventura already secure in first place, it will be either the Chargers or Royals with the second ticket. A DP win over Buena would seal it, but a loss would mean that the decision goes down to more specific criteria such as individual matches won.

PHOTO GALLERY

DOS PUEBLOS 42, SAN MARCOS 22

103 — Anthony Sarena, DP, pinned Michael Partins, 3:23

112 — Shannon Dixon, DP, pinned Carlos Medina, 2:56

119 — Harrison Solomon, DP, def. Felipe Roman, 9-5

125 — David Billesbach, SM, def. Richard Case, 16-6

130 — DP wins by forfeit

135 — Mario Elias, DP, def. Tyler Mallard, 9-8

140 — Chuy Lopez, DP, def. Jason Stevens, 5-4

152 — Ethan Davis, SM, def. Kevin Little by DQ

160 — Connor Dorais, DP, pinned Louis Grioux, 1:09

171 — Zach Belway, SM, pinned Abraham Lizama, 1:16

189 — Joseph Story, DP, def. Julian Lake, 11-10

215 — Raul Yescas, DP, def. Jake Jourdan, 6-5

Heavyweight — Luis Urbina, SM, pinned Nick Wagner, 3:02

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