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Seniors Gonzalez, Martinez wrestle defeat at CIF prelims

Seniors Gonzalez, Martinez wrestle defeat at CIF prelims
Bren Belmonte

By Brian Ly | Staff Writer

Bren Belmonte | Tongva Times

   On Feb. 11, seniors Ethan Gonzalez and Joseph Martinez competed on the second day of the Southern Section CIF individual championship qualifiers. The two wrestlers competed at Fountain Valley High School, with neither placing. 

   Varsity wrestling is no stranger to individual CIF qualifiers, with wrestlers from both teams qualifying for day one of CIF qualifiers last year. Martinez competed at Shadow Hills High School in his junior year. 

   “It’s pretty hard to place at any of the big non-league tournaments,” stated head coach Marcelino Ruiz. “It was a real heartbreaker for the team. But they gave it their all, and they went down swinging.” 

   While only Gonzalez and Martinez advanced onto the second day, wrestlers were able to place in league finals, allowing them to compete at the individual championship qualifiers. On Feb. 10, the boys varsity wrestling team competed at Fountain Valley for day one of CIF qualifiers, while the girls varsity wrestling team competed at San Dimas High School. 

   “There were always going to be harder challenges in CIF matches,” stated Martinez. “But at the end of the day, I love wrestling and I’m always excited to be out there competing.” 

   Wrestlers competed at Gabrielino High School for their individual league finals. On the boys varsity team, placing second in their respective weight classes were senior Martinez, junior Roy Mendoza, and freshman Ismael Lopez. Placing third were seniors Kyle Truong, Ethan Gonzalez, Isaac Valencia and Jason Rodriguez, sophomore Alexis Hernandez, and freshmen Nathan Zepada, Arthur Dominguez, and Gabriel Beltran. 

   For girls varsity, sophomore Karina Vargas claimed the title of Mission Valley League wrestling champion placing first. Senior Lea Jordan, junior Alexise Lopez, and freshman Amy Yuan placed second. Sophomores Julissa Peña and Amanda Lee placed third. 

   “Because I’m not just sitting around anymore, there’s a level of pride now that I’ve gotten more confident,” stated Vargas. “A good atmosphere always gets me excited to compete.” 

   The varsity team did not qualify for CIF team duals on Feb. 1 and Jan. 28. 

   While the Eagles had a scheduled meet against Mountain View High School on Jan. 24, the team was unable to compete due to a bomb threat that required evacuation at Gabrielino. 

   On Jan. 21, Martinez placed fifth against Esperanza High School. The competition started at for boys, while girls varsity competed at John Glenn High School at that day. No Eagles placed at John Glenn.

   Senior night warmed hearts on Jan. 19 with the last home match of the season. Boys won 57-24, while the girls lost 12-42. 

   “The juniors, sophomores, and even the freshmen, they’re great guys and girls,” said Martinez. “Even with us seniors being gone next year, there’ll be a good group of people to look up to for newcomers to the sport.” 

   Peña placed second at the Girls Montclair Varsity Tournament on Jan. 14, where girls varsity competed away at. 

  Gabrielino played off against Arroyo High School on Jan. 12. Both teams lost with boys scoring 34-37, and girls 3-51.

   On Jan. 5, the Eagles wrestled Rosemead High School in a home match at 3:30 p.m. Girls varsity stole the show with a 48-0 score, and boys avenged their previous loss, winning 38-34. 

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About the Contributors
Brian Ly
Brian Ly, Production Chief
Brian Ly is the Production Chief for the Tongva Times and is entering his fourth year with the paper. In his personal life, Brian has a keen interest in insects, collectible card games, books, and movies. He even aspires to raise his own "Gregor Samsas" when he finds the right environment. Interestingly, Brian initially joined the newspaper in his freshman year, mistaking it for a history class due to the presence of a textbook. Despite the unexpected start, he remained with the Tongva Times, drawn by the strong sense of community and the chance to interact with diverse individuals, from school athletes to the mayor of San Gabriel.
Bren Belmonte
Bren Belmonte, Staff Writer
Bren Belmonte is a Photographer and Staff Writer with three years of experience on our newspaper team. Outside of journalism, Bren enjoys cosplaying, photographing friends, reading manga, watching anime, and listening to music. Bren chose the journalism class in sophomore year after encouragement from family members in the industry. Since then, they've recognized it as a future passion and career interest.
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