The annual Doc Buchanan Invitational is an opportunity for the best high school wrestlers in California and beyond to test themselves at midseason.
“When you get all this amazing talent from all over the country coming to the town of Clovis, what more could you want?” Buchanan coach Troy Tirapelle said. “You don’t have to leave your own bed at night and still get to wrestle the best in the country.”
Buchanan, the three-time defending state champion, had four finalists and wrapped up the Doc team title in Saturday’s finals. Of those four, Carlos Negrete Jr. (113 pounds) and Matt Olguin (160) were crowned champions.
Just how big is the Doc Buchanan?
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It attracted nine of the top 21 teams in Flo Wrestling’s national rankings: No. 2 Bergen Catholic-New Jersey, No. 7 Montini Catholic-Illinois, No. 8 Lake Highland Prep-Florida, No. 10 Buchanan, No. 11 Gilroy, No. 14 St. John Bosco-Bellflower, No. 15 Selma, No. 20 Clovis and No. 21 Clovis North.
Twelve states were represented and there were 40 nationally ranked wrestlers including No. 1s Richard Figueroa of Selma (106), Robert Howard of Bergen Catholic (126) and Cohlton Schultz of Ponderosa-Colorado (285).
Figueroa, ranked No. 1 in the state by Cal Grappler and The Wrestler, beat Buchanan’s Jack Gioffre for his second straight cowboy hat, the Doc’s signature winner’s trophy.
“I love big tournaments,” Figueroa said. “I do great at big tournaments. I just love when a lot of people are watching me and we got the whole Selma crowd out here ... this is amazing. It makes me more pumped up to be out there.”
Bergen Catholic has traveled cross-country for the Doc each of the past four years.
“This is one of the best tournaments in the country,” said assistant coach Dominic Santoli, whose team has won the past seven New Jersey state titles. “We get to experience a whole new culture on this side of the country. I love it and it’s my favorite tournament of the year.”
Bergen Catholic did not have all of its wrestlers compete this weekend.
In the end, Buchanan took the team title with 194 points over Montini Catholic (183.5).
The highlight of the night went to Mosha Schwartz of Ponderosa-Colorado who seemed to be on his way to a loss, but not so fast.
Schwartz trailed 8-4 in the third period, but rallied to stun Howard in a 22-point match. Schwartz won by sudden victory (12-10) in overtime to claim the cowboy hat.
Remember the name Abas?
The next generation of Abases wrestled at the Doc.
Jaden Abas is a senior at Rancho Bernardo-San Diego and is ranked No. 1 by The California Wrestler. He is a two-time state finalist and three-time medalist. He signed with Stanford in November.
His dad, Gerry Abas, wrestled for Fresno State under former coach Dennis DeLiddo. Gerry has been the coach at Rancho Bernardo the past two seasons.
Gerry Abas’ 134 career wins put him at No. 2 on Fresno State’s all-time win list. His career win percentage of .870 is No. 4 all-time at Fresno State, and just eight Bulldogs have ever had more wins in a single season than the 41 he had as a freshman in 1992.
Gerry’s brother, Stephen, won an Olympic silver medal at 121 pounds at the 2004 Summer Games in Athens. Stephen was a four-time Al-American and won three NCAA titles.
“We had a great run,” Gerry said. “It was a good 10 years. We helped solidify a style of wrestling where we were known for taking guys down. We can give credit to my brother and I here at Fresno State through the ‘90s.”
More pressure for Jaden? No way, said the youngest Abas.
“I see pressure as something you put on yourself,” said Jaden, who won at 145. “It’s mostly a mental game out there. You can either make yourself wrestle worse or make yourself wrestle better. My whole life, I’ve just carried that pressure and flourish with it. I believe it’s made me better.”
Anthony Galaviz: 559-441-6042, agalaviz_TheBee
Teams: 1. Buchanan 194, 2. Montini Catholic-Illinois 183.5, 3. Bergen Catholic 163.5, 4. Gilroy 140, 4. Lake Highland Prep-Florida 136.5, 6. Selma 120.5, 7. Clovis 1134, 8. Clovis North 92, 9. Crescent Valley-Oregon 91.5, 10. St. John Bosco 86.
106: Richard Figueroa (Selma) F Jack Gioffre (Buchanan), 2:20
113: Carlos Negrete jr (Buchanan) DEC Vince Cornella (Monarch (CO)), 4-3
120: Nic Bouzakis (Lake Highland Prep (FL)) DEC Maximo Renteria (Buchanan), 6-5
126: Mosha Schwartz (Ponderosa (CO)) DEC Robert Howard (Bergen Catholic (NJ)), 12-10 SV
132: Kyle Parco (De La Salle) DEC Marcos Polanco (Bishop Amat), 9-4
138: Chase Saldate (Gilroy) DEC Justin Rivera (Lake Highland Prep (FL)), 3-2
145: Jaden Abas (Rancho Bernardo) MD Fidel Mayora (Montini Catholic (IL)), 10-2
152: Jake Stiles (Montini Catholic (IL)) DEC Isaac Wilcox (Olympus (UT)), 3-1
160: Matthew Olguin (Buchanan) MD Noah Blake (Del Oro), 10-2
170: Trey Munoz (Trabuco Hills) DEC Drake Engelking (Longmont (CO)), 7-3
182: Chris Foca (Bergen Catholic (NJ)) F Jack Kilner (Granada), 1:36
195: Jacob Cardenas (Bergen Catholic (NJ)) DEC Pete Christensen (Montini Catholic (IL)), 10-5
220: Mike Ruiz (Villa Park) M FOR Victor Jaquez (Belermine Prep)
285: Cohlton Schultz (Ponderosa (CO)) F Nicholas Villarreal (Gilroy), 1:07
106: Chance Lamer (Crescent Valley (OR)) M FOR Gabe Whisenhunt (Crescent Valley (OR))
113: Tristan Lujan (Selma) DEC Nick Kayal (Bergen Catholic (NJ)), 7-0
120: Brandon Paulson (Clovis) DEC Joey Cruz (Clovis North), 6-1
126: Dylan Ragusin (Montini Catholic (IL)) F Devin Murphy (Clovis North), 2:25
132: Ryan Franco (Clovis North) DEC Logan Gioffre (Buchanan), 3-1
138: Legend Lamer (Crescent Valley (OR)) TF Luciano Arroyo (Calvary Chapel-Santa Ana), 16-1 3:36
145: Cael Valencia (St. John Bosco) DEC Wade Unger (Bergen Catholic (NJ)), 5-3
152: Jace Luchau (Selma) DEC Aaron Gandara (Poway), 3-1 SV
160: Kai Bele (Lake Highland Prep (FL)) DEC Max Aguirre (Frontier), 3-1
170: Christian Rodriguez (Selma) F Sean Mccormick (Churchill County (NV)), 3:17
182: Nathan Haas (St. John Bosco) DEC Chase Stegall (Northwest (MO)), 5-3
195: Ryan Reyes (Gilroy) DEC Jacob Good (Clovis), 3-1
220: Kyle Richards (Folsom) DEC Peter Ming (Elk Grove), 6-4
285: Ben Dooley (Churchill County (NV)) F Kaimana Wa`a (Crescent Valley (OR)), 4:20
106: Brayden Abell (Oakdale) DEC Raymond Lopez (Buchanan), 5-2
113: Steele Dias (Green Valley (NV)) DEC Michael Gioffre (Buchanan), 5-0 SV
120: Antonio Lorenzo (St. John Bosco) DEC Izzy Tubera (Pitman), 2-1
126: Henry Porter (Oakdale) DEC Daniel Cardenas (Pomona (CO)), 9-2
132: Jose Fernandez iii (Upper Lake) DQW Noah Mirelez (Patterson)
138: Elijah Blake (Del Oro) F Jaden Le (Rancho Bernardo), 2:52
145: Johnny Fox (Gilroy) DEC Joseph Martin (Buchanan), 4-3
152: Tyler Badgett (Rancho Bernardo) F Daniel Vizcarra (Gilroy), 3:45
160: Wyatt Pfau (Brush (CO)) F William Kloster (Lemoore), 3:00
170: Mark Cardwell (Monache) F Jarad Priest (Bakersfield), 4:01
182: Trevor Swier (Montini Catholic (IL)) DEC Felipe Rodriguez (Clovis West), 1-0
195: Nathan Dugan (Lake Norman (NC)) DEC Logan Andrew (Lake Highland Prep (FL)), 9-3
220: Erich Osteen (Chaminade Prep) M FOR Juan Mora (Pitman), 2-0 0:45
285: Levi Markey (Del Campo) DEC Mike Mcnicholas (Montini Catholic (IL)), 8-4
106: Joe Cangro (Bergen Catholic (NJ)) DEC Ryan Luna (St. Francis), 3-0
113: Jayden Gomez (Gilroy) TF Nash Singleton (Roseburg (OR)), 17-2 3:32
120: Savion Dixon (Paloma Valley) M FOR Wyatt Yapoujian (Pomona (CO))
126: Christian Nunez (Bishop Amat) DEC Cole Reyes (Frontier), 6-4
132: Dylan Burnoski (Montini Catholic (IL)) MD Brenden Johnson (Del Oro), 10-2
138: Fabian Santillan (Grandview (CO)) DEC Andrew Bloemhof (Bakersfield), 8-3
145: Zak Kohler (Wasatch (UT)) F Jeff Ramsthaler (Ramona), 4:38
152: Justus Scott (Green Valley (NV)) DEC Hassan Khan (Franklin-Elk Grove), 6-2
160: Ankhaa Enkhmandahk (De La Salle) DEC Louis Rojas (St. John Bosco), 3-1
170: Rocco Contino (Buchanan) MD Kiran Srikanth (Pullman (WA)), 11-1
182: Tyler Gianakopulos (Clovis) M FOR Malik Lewis (Franklin-Elk Grove)
195: Jadon Martin (Buchanan) M FOR Adrian Chavez (Liberty-Brentwood)