Brawley Repeats As CIF Duel Champions

Brawley Union High wrestling team won the CIF-San Diego Section Division III Duel Championship on Saturday at Mira Mesa High. Photo by: Ryan Leon
Brawley Union High wrestling team won the CIF-San Diego Section Division III Duel Championship on Saturday at Mira Mesa High. Photo by: Ryan Leon

SAN DIEGO — On Saturday, the No. 1 seeded Brawley squad won the CIF-SDS Division III duel title after beating La Costa Canyon, 57-23, in the finals at Mira Mesa High School.

Uncertainty reigned heading into the inaugural CIF-San Diego Duel Championships last year with it being the first of its kind for the local high school wrestling scene.

It was an unknown challenge, nevertheless the Brawley Union High wrestling team knows how to win as they took another CIF title, maintaining their championship status.

“I saw a lot of kids contribute throughout the day and I watched them make it a team issue,” Brawley head coach Tony Leon said. “It was great to repeat as champions, but it was great to see them make the connections and truly make it a full team effort.”

In round one, Brawley beat University City, 60-9, then beat West Hills in the semifinals with a score of 70-7 to advance to the finals.

In the finals they squared off against La Costa Canyon which is new to the division as they dropped from Division II last season.

“The competition was tough and LCC was no joke … they handled Ramona pretty easily in the semifinals so we thought we were going to have a problem,” Leon said. “But our guys pulled through and did their jobs.”

With the Duel Championships out of the way, now it is time to focus on the task of making it 17 straight CIF titles for the Wildcats as they head into the CIF-SDS Division III Individual Championships on Saturday at Del Norte High School.

The Wildcats are riding high off the win this past weekend, but Leon knows what kind of challenge lies ahead of an ailing squad.

“Wrestling is a mental game, when we are on the mat and focused on wrestling and winning, injuries don’t seem to matter. I hope they have that mentality and that the injuries don’t get worse,” Leon said.

The tournament is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m.

“I’m more relaxed heading in after the duels. Individuals is about placing so if we wrestle to our seeds I think we’ll be ok,” Leon said. “There is going to be a lot of tough competition and guys we didn’t see this weekend, so I hope we are focused and ready to wrestle.”


Girl Wildcats place sixth at CIF

SAN DIEGO — The Brawley Union High girls’ wrestling team traveled to compete in the CIF-San Diego Section tournament on Friday and Saturday. The Wildcats had four placers and finished sixth overall as a team.

Brawley’s highest placer was Ericka Waters who finished second at 191-pounds qualifying her for the Girls State tournament.

Also for Brawley, Ana Cuen placed third at 103-pounds, Maia Ysiano took fourth at 108-pounds and Marbella Desiderio took fourth at 162-pounds.

Central Union had two placers in the tournament.

Cassandra Zambrano took fourth at 123-pounds and Vania Vega placed second at 139-pounds which qualifies her for the state meet.