All-Bee Wrestling Outstanding Upperweight: Nick Nevills

The Fresno BeeApril 17, 2013 

Outstanding Upperweight: Nick Nevills

School: Clovis

Grade: Junior

Weight class: 285

The résumé: Completed arguably the most dominant season of any wrestler in California by pinning Los Alamitos' Alex Redmond in 2:15 for his second state title in three years. The victory put the finishing touch on a season that saw Nevills go 53-0 with a school-record 44 pins while leading the Cougars to a third straight CIF State Championships team title. "He's once-in-a-lifetime as far as kids you get in your program," said Clovis coach Steve Tirapelle, who has coached 19 state champions in his 30 seasons between Clovis and Sacramento's Hiram Johnson. "I've done this a few years and been pretty fortunate to have good kids like Tyler Klutts, Clint Walbeck, Paul Marquez (all former state champs). But there's really only one Nick Nevills. He's phenomenal."

The motivation: Nevills entered high school with a lofty goal that he wasn't shy to admit. He wanted to be a four-time state champ, of which there has been only one since the state championships began in 1973: Bakersfield's Darrell Vasquez. But after becoming the heaviest freshman champion in state history in 2011, he got upset 4-3 in the semifinals last season and settled for third place. "Losing in wrestling is like having your mom tell you you're not her favorite son," Nevills said. "It's such an emotional feeling. It's like putting your manhood out there every time on the mat, and I like pushing myself to be the best wrestler I can be."

The future: Tirapelle expects Nevills to be the country's most sought-after recruit heading into his senior season, with Penn State, Ohio State, Oklahoma State and Nebraska in pursuit. Nevills' next goal? Become the state's 18th three-time champ and 30th four-time medalist while eclipsing the state record of 132 career pins set by Olympic champion Jake Varner of Bakersfield. Nevills has 100 and a 147-5 career record.

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