Mat maidens take the spotlight at CIF wrestling finals

Photo by Phillip Brents

Granite Hills High School senior Kailey Smith keyed Grossmont Conference competitors at last Saturday’s San Diego Section girls wrestling tournament at Santana High School with a first place showing in her 103-pound weight class.

Smith, a returning state qualifier, pinned all three of her opponents in the first period to march off the mat with the gold medal.

She was the lone East County champion in the 45-team single division event to conclude the season.

There will not be a girls section Masters state-qualifying tournament or a state championship event this year.

Smith was impressive on the mat in this shortened season, placing runner-up at the 18-team Granite Hills Invitational on May 8 and first place at the Grossmont Conference championship tournament on May 15 while wrestling boys.

She lost by a respectable 9-2 decision to Olympian’s Abram Cline at the Granite Hills Invitational and defeated Grossmont’s Andrew Mercado at the conference finals by a score of 7-2.

Smith was just as impressive at last Saturday’s all-girls event with a 1:08 pin of Steele Canyon’s Bella Sevillano in the quarterfinals, a 1:39 pin of Imperial’s Sandra Arguelles in the semifinals and a 54-second pin of Brawley’s Jaylee Cazares in the championship round.

East County recorded three second-place finishers in the 137-deep entry field.

West Hills’ Chloe Tolentino placed runner-up in her 128-pound weight division while Grossmont’s Sarah Stevens placed runner-up in her 133-pound division.

El Cajon Valley’s Valeria Rocha Ibarra finished second at 237 pounds while Steele Canyon’s Faith Manis placed third in the same weight class.

Tolentino opened the tournament with three quick pins measuring 42 and 40 seconds and another in 1:29 but was pinned in the final in 2:25 by Imperial’s Ariah Barragan.

Stevens won her opening two matches — a 4:39 pin against Olympian’s Makenna Harbin in the quarterfinals and a 17-5 major decision over Clairemont’s Riley Higgins in the semifinals. However, Stevens could not continue her winning streak after dropping a 7-0 decision to Rancho Bernardo’s Annabel He in the championship round.

Rocha Ibarra pinned her way to the finals with falls of 21 and 37 seconds but lost a close 10-7 decision to Olympian’s Angelina Leal in the championship round.

Top teams

Brawley, braced by two individual weight class champions, won the team championship with 161 points while Mira Mesa, also with two individual CIF champions, placed runner-up with 103 points.

Imperial, also with one individual weight class champion, finished third with 85 points — one point ahead of Metro Conference champion Olympian in fourth place.

Valley Center, which netted two individual CIF champions, finished in a tie with Olympian while Eastlake, Grossmont and Steele Canyon all finished in a tie for sixth place with 36 points.

Eleven schools were represented on top of the awards podium with gold medalists.

Brawley led all teams with seven finalists.

Clairemont’s Gabriella Rine recorded most pins in least time with four falls in 4:35 while Poway’s Alejandra Valdivizio recorded the fastest pin in five secnds.

Steele Canyon brought 11 wrestlers to the tournament. Six of them won at least one match.

Besides Manis and Sevillano, other Cougar entrants included Tatum Winkler (108), Madison Keifer (113), Amanda Sadoudi (123), Mikeala Acevedo (128), Sabrina Sadoudi (133), Elizabeth LeNoir (139), Brook Meier (145), Rebecca Anderson (152) and Allison Mittny (162).

Grossmont followed with the next sizable contingent at five entrants. Besides Stevens, other Foothillers competing included Olivia Coates (108), Kathryn Telleson (118), Gabriella Coats (123) and Heidi Babcock (128). All five girls won at least on match.

West Hills, Mount Miguel and El Cajon Valley all had three entrants in the tournament.

Besides Tolentino, participants for West Hills also included Kayla Lim (123) and Marina Morales (162).

Besides Rocha, El Cajon Valley’s entrants also included Chloe Smal (128) and Skylar Ferland (133).

Mount Miguel’s entrants included Lexy Ayala (103), Mialuv Rosa (108) and Emma Contreras (162). Contreras finished 2-2 in the tournament with two pins, advancing as far as the consolation semifinals.

Santana had two wrestlers compete: Destiny Vega (145) and Jaiden Ruckle (191).


103 Pounds

1. Kailey Smith (Granite Hills); 2. Jaylee Cazares (Brawley); 3. Sandra Arguelles (Imperial); Jasmin Rodriguez (Castle Park)

Championship: Smith pinned Cazares, 0:54

Third place: Arguelles dec. Rodriguez, 8-6

108 Pounds

1. Birta McCaskill (Mira Mesa); 2. Mia Navarro (Brawley), Isabel Cigarroa (Imperial), Alyssa Cazares (Southwest)

Championship: McCaskill dec. Navarro, 7-2

Third place: Cigarroa dec. Cazares, 7-1

113 Pounds

1. Arianna Gonzales (Brawley), 2. Isabella Lamadrid (Eastlake), 3. Gabriella Rine (Clairemont); 4. Audrey Tordilla (Del Norte)

Championship: Gonzales dec. Lamadrid, 5-0

Third place: Rine pinned Tordilla, 3:00

118 Pounds

1. Karen Salais (Calexico), 2. Helena Insko (Mira Mesa), 3. Iris Meono (Imperial), 4. Grace Neiman (Olympian)

Championship: Salais pinned Insko, 5:44

Third place: Meono pinned Neiman, 2:38

123 Pounds

1. Anya Rodriguez (Mar Vista), 2. Kayla Tolentino (Otay Ranch), 3. Carla Leon (San Diego), 4. Kayla Edwards (RBV)

Championship: Rodriguez dec. Tolentino 7-3

Third place: Leon dec, Edwards, 6-0

128 Pounds

1. Ariah Barragan (Imperial), 2. Chloe Tolentino (West Hills), Alejandra Valdivizio (Poway), Alexa Rosales (San Ysidro)

Championship: Barragan pinned Tolentino, 2:25

Third place: Valdivizio pinned Rosales, 2:25

133 Pounds

1. Annabel He (Rancho Bernardo), 2. Sarah Stevens (Grossmont), 3. Rachel Hernandez (Valley Center), Anastasia Tolentino (Coastal Academy)

Championship: He dec. Stevens, 7-0

Third place: Hernandez won by no contest over Tolentino

139 Pounds

1. Kyla Pattillo (Mira Mesa), 2. Celina Esquer (Olympian), 3. Alexandra May (El Camino), 4. Elizabeth LeNoir (Steele Canyon)

Championship: Pattillo pinned Esquer, 3:44

Third place: May pinned LeNoir, 0:42

145 Pounds

1. Savannah Gomez (Brawley), 2. Ayleen Gomez (Olympian), 3. Paris Ornelas (Chula Vista), 4. Kahmela Kaith Solano (Mira Mesa)

Championship: S.Gomez pinned A.Gomez, 0:20

Third place: Ornelas won by medical forfeit over Kaith Solano

152 Pounds

1. Kayley Garcia (Vista), 2. Shyla Cooper (Serra), 3. Iris Diaz (Valley Center), 4. Madison Summers (El Camino)

Championship: Garcia pinned Cooper, 1:50

Third place: Diaz pinned Summers, 2:59

162 Pounds

1. Savannah Mefford (Valley Center), 2. Yisel Arias (Brawley), 3. Yessenia Sanchez (Carlsbad), Stacey Alvarado (Chula Vista)

Championship: Mefford pinned Arias, 0:47

Third place: Sanchez dec. Alvarado, 3-0

172 Pounds

1. Savannah Mefford (Valley Center), 2. Yisel Arias (Brawley), 3. Yessenia Sanchez (Carlsbad), Stacey Alvarado (Chula Vista)

Championship: Mefford pinned Arias, 0:47

Third place: Sanchez dec. Alvarado, 3-0

191 Pounds

1. Foshay Mallard (Crawford), 2. Sierra Guajardo (Brawley), 3. Kiley McClain (RBV), 4. Carmen Gonzalez (Southwest)

Championship: Mallard pinned Guajardo, 3:15

Third place: McClain pinned Gonzalez, 4:30

237 Pounds

1. Angelina Leal (Olympian), 2. Valeria Richa (El Cajon Valley), 3. Faith Manis (Steele Canyon), 4. Evelynn Coronado (Montgomery)

Championship: Leal dec. Rocha Ibarra, 10-7

Third place: Manis pinned Coronado, 1:20


Points: 1. Brawley 161, 2. Mira Mesa 103, 3. Imperial 85, 4. (tie) Olympian, Valley Center 84, 6. (tie) Eastlake, Grossmont, Steele Canyon 36, 9. Rancho Buena Vista 33, 10. Mar Vista 29, 11. Calexico 29, 12. (tie) Chula Vista, Clairemont, Granite Hills, Rancho Bernardo 26, 16. West Hills 25, 17. Crawford 24, 18. Vista 23.5, 19. Carlsbad 23, 20. (tie) El Camino, Otay Ranch, Southwest 22, 23. Poway 19, 24. (tie) Del Norte, El Cajon Valley 18, 26, Coastal Academy 17, 27. San Diego 15, 28. Serra 14, 29. Castle Park 13, 30. (tie) Montgomery, San Ysidro 12, 32. (tie) Bonita Vista, Central Union, Hilltop 20, 35. Mount Miguel 9, 36. Torrey Pines 8, 37. (tie) La Costa Canyon, Westview 7, 39. (tie) Guajome Park Academy, Holtville 6, 41. Point Loma 2, 42 (tie), Hoover, San Marcos, Santana, Sweetwater 0