Story by Haelee Kim
Associate Opinion Editor
Photo by Katelyn Hernandez
The varsity wrestling team lost in its first league duel against the San Marino Titans on Thursday, Jan. 9, with a total score of 40-27. South Pas was only able to win in three of the eight matches.
Junior Roxanne Lynch (138 lb) was the lone girl competitor, quickly and efficiently winning her match. Immediately taking down her opponent and remaining on top for the duration of the first period, the San Marino athlete was unable to throw her off by the second period, culminating the match with another takedown from Lynch.
“I felt like I did better today than I have in the past. I felt like I took more shots, although I still need to work on sinking the half in deeper so I can get the pin faster,” she said.
Junior Elias Morales (120 lb) started off for the boys, losing his match with a quick takedown that ended with a pin during his first period. Sophomore Dominic Hernandez (132 lb) followed suit after a takedown by San Marino, although his match was marked with more hand fighting. Hernandez suffered a bloody nose, resulting in a five-minute blood time. The bleeding would not stop however, and a second blood time awarded the Titans the win.
Junior Abdel Alkhatib (145 lb) received a point for escaping out of his bottom position, but he, junior Andrew Kim (152 lb), and senior Chris Kim (138 lb) would ultimately lose their matches with a pin.
Junior Devin Peries (160 lb) proved to be more successful, beginning his match with intense hand fighting and taking down his opponent shortly after. Peries also received two points for nearly pinning down his opponent, and the match would be prolonged into the second period. Another nearfall would take place, finally ending the match with a pin onto the Titan and granting South Pas their first win for the boys.
A bye for the next two weight categories, sophomore athletes Matthias Sanchez (170 lb) and Giacomo Mastromatteo (182 lb), brought the scores up to 30-12.
The last match of the duel, coming from freshman Isaiah Cooper (220 lb), was the most drawn out. Cooper began with a takedown against his opponent and the San Marino athlete retaliated straight away. But the latter ended up receiving a technical violation for locking hands. Cooper earned five points in the stagnant first period.
The second period ended with both athletes performing takedowns and tiring each other out. At the start of the third, the Titan was able to take down South Pas twice, but Cooper was able to make a comeback and successfully escape from both. After more seconds of reversals and escapes, Cooper managed to emerge victorious as the countdown ran out. He would end his match with a 15-point increase for the Tigers.
“The San Marino duel is always challenging due to their number of competitors and how good most of them are,” Lynch said. “The boys have a tournament this Saturday, but we’ll all be back training tomorrow and we’ll use the constructive criticism from our coach today to improve our wrestling for the next duel.”
The Tigers will compete in another tournament on Saturday, Jan. 11 at San Fernando, as well as prepare for their next league duel against Monrovia on Thursday, Jan. 16.