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Rangers takedown Miners in key WYL tri-dual

12:00 AM, Jan. 18, 2013 EST

Redwood's Darrion Harris, left, takes on El Diamante's William McDarment during the 126-pound match Thursday at El Diamante High School. / Steve R. Fujimoto

A changing of the guard took place in West Yosemite League wrestling - for second place, at least.

Lemoore's 17-year reign as WYL king remains intact until someone knocks them off, but control of second place officially changed hands from one Visalia school to another at a tri-dual between El Diamante, Redwood and Hanford West Thursday night at El Diamante.

After the Miners and Rangers each handled the Huskies with relative ease (56-14 and 60-9 respectively), Redwood beat El Diamante 43-28.

"We wrestled horrible," El Diamante head coach Nathan Garland said. "Nothing went our way tonight. It was just a bad night. I just think we got outworked. I thought we were a lot better off going in here than we were." You've got to step back a little bit and re-evaluate

Garland admitted his team now must focus on finishing third in the league after taking second place for the last two seasons.

Redwood took control of the match and second place in the WYL early by winning the first five bouts.

Alex Rivera earned a major decision over Ivan Aguirre in the 106-pound match, 14-1. Joey Cisneros, who is ranked No. 6 in the state and No. 3 in the Valley at 106-pounds by The California Wrestler, pinned Skyler Huskey at 2:31 in the 113-pound match. Isaiah Torres (120) earned a technical fall against Anthony Aguirre, winning the match 15-0 to quickly put Redwood ahead by the same overall score.

Darrion Harris, who is ranked No. 14 in the Valley at 120 pounds, then literally flattened El Diamante's chances to hold their position in league competition. Playing up a weight class, Harris found himself caught in close battle against William McDarment. The Miner, who at one point led 3-2, attacked aggressively all match and looked on the cusp of landing a match-changing takedown as the final period drew to a close. But Harris quickly buried any Miner dreams of digging out a key victory by putting McDarment on his back to earn a major decision, 11-3.

"(Harris) was giving up a lot of weight," Redwood head coach Dave Watts said. "Willie McDarment is a tough kid. Bumping up a weight class to try to beat him is almost impossible."

When Aaron Watts (132) beat Jacob Ruelas 8-5 in the ensuing match, Redwood owned a commanding 22-0 advantage.

"I was actually pretty impressed with the way we wrestled tonight," Watts said. "We won the matches we were supposed to win in both duals, and we won a couple matches that we didn't think we would win. I thought it was a pretty outstanding performance."

Jose Bautista was another Ranger who wrestled up a weight class. Watts said he was supposed to wrestle at 160, but didn't make weight. Instead, he found himself winning two matches at 182, including a pin at 3:33 against El Diamante's Manuel Prado.

The Miners mounted a small comeback by winning three of four matches to cut Redwood's lead to 28-17. Angel Arambula (138) earned a major decision against Armando Sanchez, 14-4. Ashton Demaree (145) pinned Nicolas Walker at 3:15.

Michael Benedetta (160) pinned Ismael Munoz at 3:47 in an otherwise even match by picking him up, slamming him to the ground and prompting the official to slam the mat just seconds later.

Roque Ortiz (195) pinned Josh Castro at 0:56 for El Diamante's only other win.

Redwood's other winners were Daniel Villafana (152) over Jordan Ruelas (pin 2:54), Blake Marple (170) over Enrique Padilla (11-5), Abraham Meza (220) over Edgar Martinez (pin 2:49) and Brenden Salazar (285) by forfeit.




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Rank School Record
1 Mission Oak High School
Tulare, CA
2 El Diamante HS
Visalia, CA
3 Mt. Whitney High School
Visalia, CA
4 Redwood High School
Visalia, CA
5 Central Valley Christian School
Visalia, CA