Varsity boys’ wrestling beats Diamond Ranch

Varsity boys’ wrestling defeated Diamond Ranch on senior night 68-6 Thursday, Jan. 26.

The Mustangs were down early on as Diamond Ranch won the first match due to forfeit, putting the Panthers up to a 0-6 lead. Sophomore Daniel McNicholl helped the Mustangs even the score 6-6 with a pin down. Following the pin came another takedown by Mariscal to put the Mustangs up 11-6 for its first lead of the night.

Seniors Brian Mariscal, Sal Rodriguez, Vincent Narvaez, and Art Punsalang all earned the Mustangs six points collectively with pins. Senior Luis Ibarra also won his match, earning Walnut three points.

“Going in, I just wanted to put on a show since it’s senior night and have fun. My mindset was just confident and ready,” Mariscal said. “Our team can only improve on our technique as always because everything else is solid right now.”

Walnut kept its dominance on the mat as freshmen Collin Hayes, junior Ryan Jennel and Rodriguez each had pin downs. Hayes and Jennel collectively earned six points with back to back pins to extend the lead to 29-6 over the Panthers.

“Just seeing everyone there and my dad being there just to celebrate with me and my brother,” Punsalang said. “It is kind of sad but on the other ,hand, I’m kind of happy that I sticked through wrestling for three years.”

In the final matches, Punsalang and Narvaez finished senior night with six point pin downs to finalize the score 68-6.

“My team and I can improve on fixing the little technical mistakes and not getting caught in certain situations,” Ibarra said. “I believe we have a high chance of taking all 14 wrestlers into CIF and possibly taking CIF as a team this year.”

By Andre Alvarez, Staff writer
Photo by Kyle Lin