Isaiah Ayon gets solo pin in Exeter’s 46-27 loss to the Selma Bears on Thursday, Feb. 1
By Patrick Dillon @PDillon_SGN
EXETER – It is not easy when a team has to face state caliber talent each season. That is what Exeter comes up against every time a match against the Selma Bears comes up. While the Monarchs got one pin to many losses in the up weight classes cost them the win 46-27.
“Anyone who wrestles Selma could come out scared,” Exeter head coach Matt Gonzales said. “But our kids I thought embraced the challenge.”
That has been the mantra of this Exeter team for the weeks leading up to their showdown with Selma. One wrestler in particular hit his challenge head on. In the 108-pound weight class Isaiah Ayon, who was recently moved back up from the junior varsity level, took to the mat. It took him just 31 seconds to get the pin after he successfully shot in for a takedown.
“That win gave us the momentum that we needed,” Gonzales said.
After five other matches had hit the mat Exeter had closed the score to 38-27. Only trailing by 11 points a win, however unlikely, was within the Monarch’s grasp. The only way to accomplish it was if Exeter won by pinning their opponent in both.
In the 147-pound weight class Lupe Ayon, one of the seniors wrestling for the final time in the Smith Gym, took to the mat. In the third round he stood toe-to-toe with his opponent tied up at 3-3. However, a split match only guaranteed Selma the win. With only seconds remaining Ayon shot in for a takedown. He missed and his opponent was able to gain the advantage for a two point takedown and the win.
“That was an important match for us,” Gonzales said. “That is why we want the competition and we want to wrestle the toughest guys we can.”
In the second of the two matches in the 154-pound weight class Jonathan Barreia fell by a major decision 16-0. That was only one of two decisions like that. Otherwise Selma won by pin or smaller point decisions. Three of the Bears pins came in the first round.
The Monarchs will more than likely see the likes of at least a couple Selma wrestlers the next time they take the mat. Both will take part in the Central Sequoia League Championships on Sat., Feb. 10, at Kingsburg High School. First matches are scheduled to begin at 8 a.m.