Murray places third at state |

Murray places third at state

Staff Reports
Blake Murray

Blake Murray had planned on a better start at the NIAA State Wrestling Championships Friday in Sparks. The Douglas High junior bounced back from an opening round loss, however, and finished with a flurry on Saturday to secure third-place in his 4A 170-pound weight class.

Murray defeated three straight opponents, the last a win by fall over Dominic Paulos of Las Vegas High in the third-place match at Spanish Springs High School. While Murray pinned Paulos in 3:03, his earlier matches in the consolation bracket came down to the wire, as he outpointed Colby Preston of Spanish Springs 5-3 and then DeAndre Smothers of Clark 3-2.

Murray lost his first-round match by fall in 2:50 against Sunrise Region champion Ivan Espinoza of Basic. The loss was only Murray’s fifth of the season.

Three of those losses have come at the hands of Reno’s Andrew Berreyesa, who walked off the mat on Saturday with his second state title in three years. Berreyesa defeated Bishop Gorman’s Joey Mazzara by technical fall, 20-4, in a rematch of the 2016 state 170-pound final. Mazzara won last year’s match by an 8-6 decision.

Green Valley captured its sixth straight state large schools team championship by a 152-125 margin over tournament host Spanish Springs. Las Vegas, Reno and Carson finished third through fifth in the team standings.