High School Sports

Clovis wrestler Mejia returns strong; Buchanan top team at Doc Buchanan

Prep Wrestling: Clovis' Justin Mejia, Buchanan team clean up at Doc Buchanan Invitational

Clovis' Justin Mejia shook off three weeks rust while sitting out with a concussion to win the 126-pound division, while Buchanan High rode individual titles from Matthew Olguin (113), Ethan Leake (120), Brett Villarreal (138) and Anthony Montalvo
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Clovis' Justin Mejia shook off three weeks rust while sitting out with a concussion to win the 126-pound division, while Buchanan High rode individual titles from Matthew Olguin (113), Ethan Leake (120), Brett Villarreal (138) and Anthony Montalvo

Justin Mejia’s quest to complete the single greatest individual accomplishment in California high school wrestling is back on track.

Buchanan High, meanwhile, appears poised for another state championship run as the Bears as a team, and Clovis’ Mejia individually, captured titles Saturday to highlight the 40th annual Doc Buchanan Invitational.

The tournament drew six nationally ranked teams and 20 nationally ranked individuals to Clovis High.

Mejia, a three-time CIF State champion, returned after missing three weeks because of a concussion suffered in his second match of the season.

The Illinois-bound senior admitted being a little rusty when the tournament began Friday. He opened with a 9-6 victory over Clovis North’s Rocky Beckett, followed by a 4-0 win over Jaxon Garoutte of Pueblo County-Pueblo, Colo., in the round of 16 and a 6-3 decision over Buchanan’s Tyler Deen in the quarterfinals at 126 pounds.

“(Friday) was probably the worst day I’ve wrestled ever,” Mejia said. “But I came out with W’s so I was excited. And the second day, my coaches told me you may lose, but you have to wrestle yourself back into shape.”

Mejia returned to form Saturday, scoring a 12-2 major decision over state No. 3-ranked Robert Garcia IV of Selma to set the stage for a rematch of last season’s 120-pound state final against Rancho Bernardo-San Diego’s No. 2-ranked Jaden Abas, son of former Fresno State standout Gerry Abas.

I was not feeling good about myself after that first day. I told myself I wasn’t ready to come back, I shouldn’t have done it. But after that win (over Garcia), I felt great again.

Clovis High 126-pound champ Justin Mejia on his two-day march to a Doc Buchanan Invitational title

“It was great to get me out of that slump,” Mejia said. “I was not feeling good about myself after that first day. I told myself I wasn’t ready to come back; I shouldn’t have done it. But after that win (over Garcia), I felt great again.”

InterMat’s nationally No. 4-ranked Mejia scored all of the points in the final during the second period with an escape, takedown and near fall to beat Abas 6-0. Mejia pinned Abas, then competing for Frontier, in 3:35 of last season’s state final.

Mejia, who also won state titles at 113 pounds in 2015 and 106 pounds in 2014, is seeking to join Bakersfield’s Darrell Vasquez (1999-2002) as the only four-time champ since the CIF State Championships launched in 1973.

“I feel good,” said Mejia, 7-0 this season. “There’s nothing wrong with my head. I’m just working back into shape.”

Buchanan was the night’s other big winner. Matthew Olguin (113), Ethan Leake (120), Brett Villarreal (138) and Anthony Montalvo (182) took titles as the Bears rolled up 216 points.

We’re only getting better and stronger. Our lineup is at full strength and everyone is at where we need to be.

Buchanan 182-pound champ Anthony Montalvo on the state of his defending state champ Bears after the Doc B team title

Clovis, which had champs in Mejia and 285-pounder Seth Nevills, was second with 174, followed by Pueblo County and Roseburg (Ore.) with 117.

“I think our team is rolling,” Montalvo said. “And we’re only getting better and stronger. Our lineup is at full strength and everyone is at where we need to be.”

Olguin and Leake beat nationally ranked opponents for a Bears team that’s ranked No. 2 in the country by InterMat.

Olguin, who is nationally No. 17 at 120, topped No. 9 Jesse Vasquez of St. John Bosco-Bellflower 7-1 in the final to improve to 21-0 on the season.

Leake, who is No. 15 at 126, beat No. 20 Ian Timmins of Wooster-Reno, Nev., 4-2 for the title.

“I wanted to get another win over a ranked guy, prove nationally that I am a really good wrestler, prove that I was the first seed at this tournament and that I’m a Doc B champ,” said Leake, 20-0 this season. “And I did that.”

Villarreal, named the tournament’s Outstanding Lower Weight, beat Jacob Greenwood of Poudre-Fort Collins, Colo., 11-4 in the final, while Montalvo pinned Oakdale’s Collbey Harlan in 4:43 to earn his Doc Buchanan cowboy hat, the event’s signature trophy.

“I feel pretty good about it,” said Montalvo, 23-0. “I feel I could have showed a little more dominance … but I’m pretty content where I’m at. I just want to keep moving.”

Clovis’ Nevills and Bakersfield’s Navonte Demison (145) were the only other champions from Central Section schools.

The nationally No. 2-ranked Nevills, a junior, scored his fourth pin of the tournament when he dropped Delhi’s Jesus Flores in 3:09 of the final.

Nevills, who won state titles at 220 pounds as a freshman in 2015 and at 285 last season, is 14-0 this season.

“It’s an amazing feeling to come out here and win in front of your home crowd,” Nevills said. “I don’t think there is anything else like this in California except the state tournament. It’s an amazing tournament. I’m wrestling pretty well. I just have to stay humble and not under think anyone.”

Nick Giannandrea: 559-441-6103, @NickG_FB



1. Buchanan 216, 2. Clovis 174, 3. Pueblo County (Colo.) 117, Roseburg (Oregon) 117, 5. St. John Bosco-Bellflower 96, 6. Pomona (Arvada, Colo.) 94, 7. Sultana 93, 9. Clovis North 92, Gilroy 92, Rancho Bernardo-San Diego 92; 12. Selma 82, 13. Del Oro-Loomis 74, 14 Oakdale 66, 15. Frontier 65, 16. Greenly Central (Colo.) 63, 17. Lemoore 62, 18. De La Salle-Concord 55.



1st: Antonio Lorenzo (Del Oro) d. Cole Reyes (Frontier), 7-1; 3rd: Giano Petrucelli (Clovis) d. Brendon Garcia (Pueblo County), 10-5; 5th: Tristan Lujan (Selma) FOR Wyatt Yapoujian (Pomona-Colo.); 7th: Noah Padilla (Victor Valley) FOR.


1st: Matthew Olguin (Buchanan) d. Jesse Vasquez (St. John Bosco), 7-1; 3rd: Nic Aguilar (Gilroy) d. Josh Nira (Greeley Central), 6-0; 5th: Devin Murphy (Clovis North) p. Brandon Paulson (Clovis), 4:36; 7th: Justin Pacheco (Pomona-Colo.) d. Oscar Nellis (Rancho Buena Vista-Vista), 3-0.


1st: Ethan Leake (Buchanan) d. Ian Timmins (Wooster-Reno), 4-2; 3rd: Colton Yapoujian (Pomona-Colo.) d. Angelo Martinoni (Folsom), 7-0; 5th: Jacob Seto (Elk Grove) M FOR Nathan Bonham (Pueblo County); 7th: Sidney Flores (Bishop Amat-La Puente) d. Chase Saldate (Gilroy), 1-0.


1st: Justin Mejia (Clovis) d. Jaden Abas (Rancho Bernardo), 6-0; 3rd: Andrew Alirez (Greeley Central) d. Robert Garcia IV (Selma), 8-3; 5th: Tyler Deen (Buchanan) d. Kyle Parco (San Ramon Valley-Danville), 7-5 SV; 7th: Job Greenwood (Poudre-Fort Collins, Colo.) M FOR Aaron Perez (James Logan-Union City).


1st: Grant Willits (Pueblo County) d. Theorius Robison (Pomona-Colo.), 3-2; 3rd: Gary Joint (Lemoore) d. Elijah Ozuna (Frontier), 4-0; 5th: Chris Deloza (Clovis North) d. Cole Polluconi (Monarch-Louisville, Colo), 8-1; 7th: Adam Velasquez (Pitman-Turlock) d. Ricky Torres (Oakdale), 1-0.


1st: Brett Villarreal (Buchanan) d. Jacob Greenwood (Poudre), 11-4; 3rd: JJ Figueroa (Bakersfield) d. Zander Silva (Alta Loma), 4-3; 5th: Sonny Santiago (St. John Bosco) d. Tony Mendoza (Selma), 6-5; 7th: Alex Felix (Gilroy) d. Bennett Mesa (Roseburg), 11-5.


1st: Navonte Demison (Bakersfield) d. Peyton Omania (De La Salle), 12-1; 3rd: Jaden Enriquez (Mission Oak) p. Chris Gaxiola (Buchanan), 3:07; 5th: Cristian Dominguez (Central Catholic-Modesto) MD Alexander Escudero (Los Gatos), 12-4; 7th: Tristan Zamilpa (Buchanan) d. Daniel Woo (Pioneer-San Jose), 8-5.


1st: Hunter Willits (Pueblo County) d. Joel Romero (Buchanan), 6-2; 3rd: John Manning (St. Thomas Villanova-LaSalle, Ontario) d. David San Miguel (Bellarmine Prep-San Jose), 1-0; 5th: Jason Romero (Pomona-Colo.) d. Jonathan Garcia (Frontier), 6-5; 7th: Evan Solis (Sultana) M FOR Erik Salcido (Rancho Bernardo).


1st: Layne Vananrooy (Roseburg) d. Brandon Martino (Clovis), 5-3; 3rd: Mark Cardwell (Monache) p. Aaron Olmos (Mater Dei Catholic-Chula Vista), 1:55; 5th: Ricky Gonzalez (Bakersfield) d. Joe Barnes (Gilroy), 3-1; 7th: Oscar Diaz (Selma) d. Kolsen Welham (Holy Family-Broomfield, Colo.), 4-2.


1st: Anthony Mantanona (Palm Desert) p. Victor Vargas (Clovis), 2:17; 3rd: Abel Garcia (Oakdale) d. Nolan Krone (Pomona-Colo.), 9-3; 5th: Joey Griego (Sultana) d. Christian Rodriguez (Selma), 3-1 SV; 7th: Jake Levatino (Buchanan) MD Chris Cantoriano (Clovis West), 9-0.


1st: Anthony Montalvo (Buchanan) p. Colbey Harlan (Oakdale), 4:43; 3rd: Samuel Loera (Bakersfield) d. Austin Harris (Roseburg), 9-4; 5th: Angel Solis (Lemoore) d. Dylan Turkowski (Sultana), 6-2; 7th: Matthew Martinez (Alvarez-Salinas) d. Gerardo Hernandez (Capistrano Valley-Mission Viejo), 6-4.


1st: Chasen Bllair (Rancho Bernardo) d. Danny Salas (St. John Bosco), 9-0 ; 3rd: Kyle Marshall (San Clemente) d. Ryan Reyes (Clovis West), 3-2; 5th: Kevin Ruiz (Alvarez) FOR Adrian Godinez (Foothill-Bakersfield); 7th: Ruger Wyneken (Clovis) p. AJ Bicocca (Oak Ridge-El Dorado Hills), 1:50.


1st: Cohl Schultz (Ponderosa-Parker, Colo.) d. Haydn Maley (Roseburg), 8-5; 3rd: Cade Belshay (Buchanan) d. Darryl Aiello (De La Salle), 5-2; 5th: Tony Andrade (Gilroy) p. John Halajian (Clovis North), 2:25; 7th: Sam Aguilar (Sultana) p. David Aranda (St. John Bosco), 3:59.


1st: Seth Nevillis (Clovis) p. Jesus Flores (Delhi), 3:09; 3rd: Nathaniel Holloway (Clovis North) d. Austin Gillham (Sultana), 3-2; 5th: Noah Wright (Lemoore) M FOR Pablo Miller (Del Oro); 7th: Luke Cruz (South San Francisco) d. Brett Schuler (Bakersfield Christian), 5-0.


106: Antonio Lorenzo (Del Oro) d. Tristan Lujan (Selma), 3-2; Cole Reyes (Frontier) d. Giano Petrucelli (Clovis), 3-0.

113: Matthew Olguin (Buchanan) d. Brandon Paulson (Clovis), 8-1; Jesse Vasquez (St. John Bosco) d. Devin Murphy (Clovis North), 5-1.

120: Ethan Leake (Buchanan) d. Nathan Bonham (Pueblo County), 7-4 TB2; Ian Timmins (Wooster-Nevada) p. Colton Yapoujian (Pomona-Colo.), 7:56

126: Justin Mejia (Clovis) maj. d. Robert Garcia IV (Selma), 12-2; Jaden Abas (Rancho Bernardo) d. Andrew Alirez (Greeley Central), 1-0.

132: Grant Willits (Pueblo County) d. Chris Deloza (Clovis North), 8-3; Theorius Robison (Pomona-Colo.) d. Gary Joint (Lemoore), 5-4.

138: Brett Villarreal (Buchanan) d. Sonny Santiago (St. John Bosco), 4-2; Jacob Greenwood (Poudre) d. JJ Figueroa (Bakersfield), 13-7.

145: Navonte Demison (Bakersfield) tech fall Alexander Escudero (Los Gatos), 15-0, 2:00; Peyton Omania (De La Salle) DEC Jaden Enriquez (Mission Oak), 5-4 TB2.

152: Hunter Willits (Pueblo County) d. David San Miguel (Bellarmine Prep), 3-2 TB2; Joel Romero (Buchanan) TF Jason Romero (Pomona-Colo.), 16-0, 4:52.

160: Layne Vananrooy (Roseburg) d. Mark Cardwell (Monache), 11-5; Brandon Martino (Clovis) d. Aaron Olmos (Mater Dei Catholic), 4-3.

170: Anthony Mantanona (Palm Desert) forfeit over Abel Garcia (Oakdale); Victor Vargas (Clovis) d. Nolan Krone (Pomona-Colo.), 5-4.

182: Anthony Montalvo (Buchanan) d. Samuel Loera (Bakersfield), 9-5; Colbey Harlan (Oakdale) d. Angel Solis (Lemoore), 6-2.

195: Danny Salas (St. John Bosco) p. Adrian Godinez (Foothill-Bakersfield), 5:27; Chasen Blair (Rancho Bernardo) d. Ryan Reyes (Clovis West), 3-1.

220: Cohl Schultz (Ponderosa) p. Darryl Aiello (De La Salle), 5:01; Haydn Maley (Roseburg) d. Cade Belshay (Buchanan), 5-2.

285: Seth Nevillis (Clovis) p. Austin Gillham (Sultana), 1:54; Jesus Flores (Delhi) d. Noah Wright (Lemoore), 10-8 SV.


106: Antonio Lorenzo (Del Oro) d. Wyatt Yapoujian (Pomona-Colo.), 3-0; Tristan Lujan (Selma) TF Eric Sanchez (Silver Creek-San Jose), 15-0, 6:00; Cole Reyes (Frontier) d. Izzy Tubera (Pitman), 4-2 SV; Giano Petrucelli (Clovis) d. Brendon Garcia (Pueblo County), 6-3.

113: Matthew Olguin (Buchanan) MD Oscar Nellis (Rancho Buena Vista), 12-4; Brandon Paulson (Clovis) d. Josh Nira (Greeley Central), 4-0; Jesse Vasquez (St. John Bosco) d. Justin Pacheco (Pomona-Colo.), 6-3; Devin Murphy (Clovis North) d. Nic Aguilar (Gilroy), 5-3.

120: Ethan Leake (Buchanan) MD Alex Nunez (Alta Loma), 10-2; Nathan Bonham (Pueblo County) d. Eric Rivera (Clovis North), 7-1; Colton Yapoujian (Pomona-Colo.) d. Chase Saldate (Gilroy), 7-3; Ian Timmins (Wooster) d. Angelo Martinoni (Folsom), 6-2 SV.

126: Justin Mejia (Clovis) d. Tyler Deen (Buchanan), 6-3; Robert Garcia IV (Selma) d. Aaron Perez (James Logan), 5-3; Jaden Abas (Rancho Bernardo) TF Kyle Parco (San Ramon Valley), 15-0, 3:12; Andrew Alirez (Greeley Central) MD Izzak Olejnik (Bakersfield), 20-9.

132: Grant Willits (Pueblo County) d. Cole Polluconi (Monarch-Colo.), 9-2; Chris Deloza (Clovis North) d. Adam Velasquez (Pitman), 3-0; Gary Joint (Lemoore) d. Elijah Ozuna (Frontier), 2-1; Theorius Robison (Pomona-Colo.) MD Ricky Torres (Oakdale), 13-2.

138: Sonny Santiago (St. John Bosco) d. Alex Felix (Gilroy), 2-2 TB2; Brett Villarreal (Buchanan) d. Tony Mendoza (Selma), 3-0; JJ Figueroa (Bakersfield) d. Bennett Mesa (Roseburg), 7-3; Jacob Greenwood (Poudre) d. Zander Silva (Alta Loma), 9-8.

145: Navonte Demison (Bakersfield) p. Chaz Franchina (Rancho Bernardo), 3:11; Alexander Escudero (Los Gatos) d. Greg Guzman (Lemoore), 6-4; Peyton Omania (De La Salle) p. Tristan Zamilpa (Buchanan), 1:44; Jaden Enriquez (Mission Oak) d. Parker Benekas (Ponderosa-CO), 9-4.

152: Hunter Willits (Pueblo County-Colo.) p. Erik Salcido (Rancho Bernardo), 4:59; David San miguel (Bellarmine Prep) d. John Manning (St. Thomas Villanova-ON), 7-4; Jason Romero (Pomona-Colo.) MD Noah Blake (Del Oro), 13-5; Joel Romero (Buchanan) MD Jonathan Garcia (Frontier), 9-0.

160: Layne Vananrooy (Roseburg-Ore.) MD Ricky Gonzalez (Bakersfield), 9-1; Mark Cardwell (Monache) d. Oscar Diaz (Selma), 5-3; Aaron Olmos (Mater Dei Catholic) d. Jacob Bueno (St. John Bosco), 9-4; Brandon Martino (Clovis) p. William Costanzo (Del Oro), 3:33.

170: Anthony Mantanona (Palm Desert) p. Jake Levatino (Buchanan), 0:51; Abel Garcia (Oakdale) d. Isaiah Perez (Pitman), 5-3; Victor Vargas (Clovis) d. Joey Griego (Sultana), 5-4; Nolan Krone (Pomona-Colo.) p. Andrue Rojas (Greeley Central-Colo.), 1:50.

182: Anthony Montalvo (Buchanan) p. Matthew Martinez (Alvarez), 0:48; Samuel Loera (Bakersfield) d. Austin Harris (Roseburg-Ore.), 12-10; Colbey Harlan (Oakdale) d. Gerardo Hernandez (Capistrano Valley), 8-2; Angel Solis (Lemoore) d. Dylan Turkowski (Sultana), 5-2.

195: Danny Salas (St. John Bosco) d. Mason Roush (Folsom), 10-3; Adrian Godinez (Foothill-Bakersfield) p. Kevin Ruiz (Alvarez), 3:02; Ryan Reyes (Clovis West) d. Ruger Wyneken (Clovis), 5-3; Chasen Blair (Rancho Bernardo) d. Kyle Marshall (San Clemente), 5-3.

220: Cohl Schultz (Ponderosa) p. Dominik Urena (Elsinore), 3:31; Darryl Aiello (De La Salle) p. Daniel Joey (Santa Ana), 5:49; Cade Belshay (Buchanan) p. Tony Andrade (Gilroy), 1:11; Haydn Maley (Roseburg-Ore.) d. Sam Aguilar (Sultana), 8-5.

285: Seth Nevills (Clovis) p. Luke Cruz (South San Francisco), 5:25; Austin Gillham (Sultana) d. Nathaniel Holloway (Clovis North), 5-2; Jesus Flores (Delhi) d. Brett Schuler (Bakersfield Christian), 8-1; Noah Wright (Lemoore) p. Pablo Miller (Del Oro), 1:56.