The state spotlight in prep wrestling will shine in the city of Clovis on Tuesday as Buchanan High will play host to Selma High. The dual-meet which is called Battle of the Bears will pit two of the best programs in the central section locking horns for the first time in years.
Buchanan, which has won three of the last four state team titles in California, will enter the event as the No. 3 team in the country and No. 1 California. While Selma, which is also ranked in the nation at No. 13 is No. 3 in California and still looking for their first state team championship in school’s rich wrestling history.
Buchanan is coming off from defeating TRAC rival Clovis High 44-16 while winning 10 of the 14 contested matches in a rowdy, packed house filled with knowledgeable wrestling fans from the central area. Selma recently competed at the always rugged Five Counties tournament where they finished with five finalists, four champions, and second in the team standings.
Marquee matchups could include Selma’s No. 1 Richard Figueroa, an Arizona State commit, against No. 2 Jack Gioffre, who has blossomed into perhaps one of the best 106-pounders in the country.
An intriguing match could occur at 113 as Buchanan’s No. 1 Carlos Negrete will take on No. 2 Tristan Lujan in a semifinal rematch of the Doc Buchanan semifinal round.
The dual will have it all with a slew of talented wrestlers ranked not just in California but in the country by various wrestling outlets. The following is a bout-by-bout preview and lineups for Tuesday’s exciting dual-meet.
Where: Buchanan HS
Time: 6:00 PM
106 – No. 1 Richard Figueroa (Selma) vs. No. 2 Jack Gioffre (Buchanan)
The pound-for-pound best overall wrestler in California, Richard Figueroa, will take on Jack Gioffre, a freshman whom he has pinned before. Gioffre has been on fire all season long and carries a 30-1 record with his lone loss being to Figueroa.
113 – No. 1 Carlos Negrete (Buchanan) vs. No. 2 Tristan Lujan (Selma)
This will be the match of the meet as both wrestlers are ranked # 1 and # 2 in California and also ranked in the country. Negrete got the best of Lujan as he defeated him in the semifinal round of Doc Buchanan where Negrete won while Lujan was third. Lujan is excellent on his feet, and he is more dangerous in the neutral position. Negrete is a beast on top and will try to turn Lujan to expose his back and earn near fall points.
120 – No. 1 Maximo Renteria (Buchanan) vs. No. 20 (126) Jacob Rivera (Selma)
Renteria is a seasoned veteran and will have home gym advantage with the always Buchanan faithful cheering for him. Nothing against Rivera who is a stud on the mats. Nevertheless, Renteria might be too much for the young Rivera with his great offense.
126 – No. 7 Hunter Leake (Buchanan) vs. No. 8 (120) Eric Rivera (Selma)
Leake will enter the dual with much confidence as he is 2-0 against Rivera. In neither match, Rivera has scored a point on Leake. Rivera will need to use a different strategy to gain the upper hand and help Selma score some much-needed point on the meet.
132 – No. 8 Logan Gioffre (Buchanan) vs. Joey Cavazo/Manny Jaramillo
This is another match were Buchanan could get six points out of Logan. Logan has been stable for Buchanan by placing fourth at Doc Buchanan and second at Battle for the Belt.
138 – No. 4 Tyler Deen (Buchanan) vs. No. 16 Tyler Sepulveda (Selma)
Deen looked good at Battle for the Belt as he placed third after finally competing in the right weight class. He is a two-time state place winner, was a state champion in New Mexico as a freshman. He will attempt to get the win over a rugged wrestler in Tyler Sepulveda. Sepulveda is having a roller coaster of a season. He will need to step it up a notch to obtain the win.
145 – No. 7 Joseph Martin (Buchanan) vs.?
152 – No. 1 Jace Luchau (Selma) vs. No. 17 Reymundo Raiz (Buchanan)
Fargo All-American Jace Luchau will attempt and score bonus points for Selma in this bout. He is a versatile wrestler with various moves to obtain the fall. Raiz is a rising junior who will try and keep Luchau to a regular decision.
160 – No.1 Matthew Olguin (Buchanan) vs. Isaiah Hernandez/Louie Armendariz
No matter who is in for Selma, the wrestler won’t have the skills or strength to defeat Olguin. Olguin is in a class of his own. He still undefeated on the season and is one of the favorites to claim a state championship in late February.
170 – No. 2 Christian Rodriguez (Selma) vs. No. 7 Rocco Contino (Buchanan)
Sophomore Contino is becoming a great wrestler for Buchanan as he has placed at both Zinkin and Doc Buchanan. However, he will have a hard time as he will face Fresno State commit Rodriguez. Rodriguez has looked great for Selma, and he is one of their top wrestlers. Don’t be surprised to get a major decision out of Rodriguez on Tuesday.
182 – No. 15 J.D. Peralta (Buchanan) vs. No. 20 Rudy Garcia (Selma)
Peralta is not yet one of Buchanan’s stars, but he is very capable of doing so in the near future. He was runner-up at El Cajon and fourth at the Zinkin Classic where he pinned Garcia in the second round of their match. Garcia was seventh at Zinkin and most recently placed fourth at Five Counties. We should expect a high scoring match with Peralta getting the win for Buchanan.
195 – No. 4 Jadon Martin (Buchanan) vs.?
220 – No. 15 Branden Cardwell (Buchanan) vs.?
285 – Michael Renovato (Selma) vs. Zane Rix (Buchanan)
It has been a while since both Selma and Buchanan has had any outstanding heavyweights competing. Neither placed at Doc Buchanan. However, Renovato has placed in other tournaments, and thus he has the upper hand in this bout. We should expect a regular decision by Renovato.