Murray qualifies for state | RecordCourier.com

Murray qualifies for state

Douglas High's Blake Murray didn't finish with the performance he had hoped for Saturday at the Northern 4A Region Wrestling Tournament in Reno.

The junior still found satisfaction with his second-place finish in the 170-pound weight class, which was good enough to qualify for the NIAA State Championships this coming weekend. Murray was the only Douglas wrestler to qualify for the 4A state tournament, which will be held Friday and Saturday at Spanish Springs High in Sparks.

Douglas finished eighth in the team standings with 51 points during the two-day region tournament at Reno High School. Spanish Springs edged past Reno by a 223-203 score to capture its fifth straight region championship and eighth in nine years.

Murray pinned two straight opponents to reach the finals, where he met Reno senior Andrew Berreyesa for the third time this season. Berreyesa won both of those previous meetings by technical fall and Murray hoped to close the gap this time. Berreyesa, now a four-time region champion, took charge from the start and eventually pinned Murray in 3:16.

Earlier on Saturday, Murray won by fall in the semifinals over Colby Preston of Spanish Springs. Preston eventually placed third.

Andrew Williams, a state qualifier in 2016, came in as the Tigers' No. 2 entry in the 132-pound weight class and pinned two straight opponents to reach the semifinals, where he lost by fall at the hands of McQueen's David Montes in 1:31. The junior was then eliminated from the consolation bracket when he lost by fall against Carson's Kyle Rudy, the Sierra League's No. 1 seed.

Recommended Stories For You

Christopher Merritt compiled a 3-2 record during the weekend at 138 pounds. Merritt won his opening round 138-pound match by fall in 1:42 then was pinned by Reno senior Payton Talbott, the eventual third-place finisher. Merritt pinned one opponent in the consolation bracket, posted a 5-4 win over Reed's Alexander Wells before he lost to Werner Hunter of Spanish Springs in the consolation semifinals.

Will Williams came in as the Sierra League's No. 1 seed at 145 pounds, however, he opened with a 4-1 loss against Isaac Ruiz of Spanish Springs on Friday. The senior worked his way through the consolation bracket with a 9-1 win and pin, only to be eliminated with a 4-2 loss in a rematch against Ruiz.

Kindel Isham drew a bye in the 120-pound weight class and then dropped an 11-4 decision in the quarterfinals to Reed's Alejandro Casarez, the eventual second-place finisher. Isham came back to score a 4-1 win over Christian Mahler of McQueen, the High Desert League's No. 1 seed, only to lose 18-9 in the consolation semifinals against Greg Ewert of Damonte Ranch.

Sophomore 182-pounder Chad Singer lost his opener to Reno's Logan Hutcherson. Singer came back and outpointed Carson's Kellen McDermott, 7-2. Singer took an early lead in the consolation semifinals, but eventually lost by fall in 3:32 against North Valleys senior Sheldon Martin.

Ryan Adams drew a bye in the 126-pound weight class and then lost his quarterfinal match against Reno's Frankie Giovannetti, the eventual second-place finisher. Adams won once in the consolation bracket before he lost in the semifinals by a 6-3 decision against Nicholas Palillo of Spanish Springs, who eventually placed third.

At 106 pounds, freshman Jaden Blanchard lost in the quarterfinals, then pinned two opponents in the consolation bracket before he lost to Sierra League No. 1 seed Bryce Bell by fall in 1:58.

Also at 138 pounds, Mason Melhus pinned his first round opponent, lost to Damonte Ranch's Cameron Sandoval in the quarterfinals and lost to Matt Barnard of Reno in a consolation match.

Richard Castellanos posted a 1-2 record with one win by fall at 220 pounds and Daniel Ferguson went 1-2 at 195 pounds.

There were some anxious moments in the team championship race. Reno led by as many as 24 points after winning six semifinal matches, however, Spanish Springs rallied back to take the lead for good going to the consolation and championship finals.

Northern 4A Region Tournament

Team scores: 1, Spanish Springs 223, 2, Reno 202, 3, Carson 157, 4, McQueen 126, 5, Damonte Ranch 118.5, 6, Reed 96, 7, Wooster 51.5, 8, Douglas 51, 9, Galena 39, 10, North Valleys 32.5, 11, Bishop Manogue 22, 12, Hug 19.

Championship round

106 pounds: Anthony Sissom (Spanish Springs) p. Eric Lopez (Reno), 3:29.

113: Brandon Basa (Carson) p. J.R. Garcia (McQueen), 3:53.

120: Jacob Ruiz (Spanish Springs) p. Alejandro Casarez (Reed), 5:51.

126: Ian Timmins (Wooster) md. Frankie Giovannetti (Reno), 9-1.

132: David Montes (McQueen) d. Tyler Green (McQueen), 4-1.

138: Cameron Sandoval (Damonte Ranch) d. Nathan Mersino (Carson), 3-2.

145: Connor Pearson (Reno) d. Kai Ward (McQueen), 4-2, OT.

152: Israel Casarez (Reed) md. Joseph McKay (Spanish Springs), 14-6.

160: Cole Drescher (Spanish Springs) md. Christian Hanly (Wooster), 10-1.

170: Andrew Berreyesa (Reno) p. Blake Murray (Douglas), 3:16.

182: Drake McAdow (Damonte Ranch) d. Logan Hutcherson (Reno), 6-2.

195: Joe Miller (McQueen) md. Abel Carter (Carson), 15-6.

220: Austin Lemons (Reno) p. Caleb Fawley (Galena), 3:38.

285: Sheldon Miller (Carson) d. Tyler Barats (Spanish Springs), 9-6.