Cal Poly to Compete in 37th Las Vegas Invitational This Weekend

Cal Poly to Compete in 37th Las Vegas Invitational This Weekend


SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. — Cal Poly will send a full contingent of wrestlers to the 37th annual Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational this weekend.

Competition inside the South Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center begins Friday at 9 a.m. Quarterfinals are slated for Friday at 6 p.m. Saturday's competition begins with wrestlebacks at 9 a.m., followed by the semifinals at 10 a.m. The championship and consolation finals will begin at 3 p.m.

Cal Poly will be led by six wrestlers who have placed in early-season tournaments.

Benny Martinez at 125 pounds and Yoshito Funakoshi (pictured at right) at 133 both captured individual titles at the season-opening Menlo Open and Dylan Miracle (165), Nathan Tausch (174) and Samuel Aguilar (285) also were place winners.

In addition, Funakoshi placed second and Brawley Lamer (157) finished fourth in the Black Knight Invitational hosted by Army West Point two weeks ago.

Funakoshi sports a 5-1 record to date while Martinez is 4-3, Aguilar 5-4, Lamer 3-2 and Tausch 3-2.

Other Mustangs scheduled to compete in the Las Vegas Invitational this weekend include Ryan Farina (141), Wyatt Cornelison (149), Jack Huber (184) and Tom Lane (197).

Lane, an NCAA qualifier a year ago, was ranked No. 14 by before posting a 1-2 mark at the Black Knight Invitational. The junior is 2-2 on the year.

Two years ago, Cal Poly 157-pounder Colt Shorts placed seventh, the first Mustang to place in the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational since 2013 when Blake Kastl placed eighth at 149 pounds. Devon Lotito finished third at 133 pounds in 2012. Ryan DesRoches claimed the 174-pound title in 2011 while 141-pounder Boris Novachkov and 285-pounder Atticus Disney both placed fifth.

Last year, Lane reached the quarterfinals and finished one victory shy of placing. At 141, Colton Schilling advanced to the fourth round of wrestlebacks before he was eliminated.

Over 30 Division I teams will descend on Sin City including Ohio State, Michigan, Missouri, Virginia Tech, Minnesota, Nebraska, Cornell, Arizona State Northern Iowa, Rutgers and North Carolina.

At least 105 of 200 wrestlers who appear in WIN's Nov. 26 rankings could face off Friday and Saturday. Two of the 43 wrestlers ranked among the top eight of their weight class, including a pair of top-ranked wrestlers in Cornell's Yianni Diakomihalis (141) and Ohio State's Myles Martin (184), are entered in the two-day meet.

Last year, Diakomihalis won the Las Vegas Invitational championship as a true freshman and then eventually the NCAA championship last March. He is ranked No. 1 at 141 pounds. Martin is an NCAA champion and two-time finalist.