OTHELLO — Ugly sweater Tuesday was a little hard on the eyes, but Othello’s 60-15 victory over Wapato was a thing of beauty.
The Huskies (2-0) were fresh off their third straight Leonard Schutte Invitational championship and feeling it the first of just four home dual matches on the schedule. They didn’t want to win head coach Rudy Ochoa II said, they wanted to dominate and get a big head of steam going into this weekend’s Tri-State Tournament.
“Our focus was getting back to owning the mat and not just be satisfied with the win, but trying to dominate. Whether we won the match or not, I felt like we were the aggressors tonight,” he said. “The guys are super excited to wrestle a home dual because we don’t have many this year because we’ve given some up for double duals. They were pumped. They wore the ugly sweaters, we wrestled well and it was just a fun night overall.”
Heavyweight Isaiah Perez made short work of Wapato sophomore Eduardo Mendez to end the night with his eighth pin of the season for another first-period win. Elijah Roylance won his match at 220 with a definitive win over Christian Longtimesleeping.
“A lot of people think, ‘Oh my gosh, I’m going against a state champion.’ I go against a state champion every day in the room, so I feel like I’m extremely prepared when I step on the mat,” said Roylance, who is Perez’s workout partner. “I’m feeling a lot more confident right now.
“I watched (Longtimesleeping) wrestle at the Schutte, so I knew pretty much what he liked to do. I felt pretty good and hopefully that carries over this weekend at the Tri-State.”
Jaxon Rocha broke open a tight match by pinning Diego Ramirez in the 138-pound match. Rocha was one of five Schutte Invite champions and set the ball in motion, giving the Huskies a 18-15 lead that steamrolled from there.
Bernie Garza Jr., won his first match of the season, sitting out to this point nursing a football injury. Maybe one of the most interesting matches of the night came at 160 where first-year wrestler AJ Veliz gutted out a big 10-7 win over Jose Adame in his first-ever varsity match.
Veliz is raw, but athletic. The one thing you can’t coach is heart and the Othello senior turned it loose.
“I’m a linebacker and I tackle, so I know how to shoot the double-leg,” said Veliz, who was fifth at the Schutte Tournament. “This was my very first varsity match and I knew it was going to be challenging. But I knew I had to step it up in front of the home crowd. The crowd was the biggest thing that told me to keep working tonight.”
Othello 60, Wapato 15
106 - Wapato wins by forfeit
113 - Jesus Virrueta, W, d. Josiah Barrera, 7-5
120 - Andy Cantu, O, p. Landro Martinez, 4:32
126 - Kyler Freeman, O, p. Xavier Acevedo, 3:11
132 - Diego Ramirez, W, p. Harold Garcia, 1:26
138 - Jaxon Rocha, O, p. Antonio Flores, :58
145 - Arturo Solorio, O, p. Axel Salas, 5:34
152 - Nathan Garza, O, p. Ignacio Olivas, 1:01
160 - AJ Veliz, O, d. Jose Adame, 10-7
170- Easton Roylance, O, p. Joseph Garcia, :20
182 - BJ Garza Jr. O, p. Jesus Parra, :49
195 - Angel Gutierrez, O. d. Eduardo Ramirez, 16-9
220 - Easton Roylance, O, d. Christian Longtimesleeping 10-2
285 - Isaiah Perez, O, p. Eduardo Mendez, 1:12