Posted: Nov 13, 2019
SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. — The first of a dozen dual meets on the Cal Poly wrestling schedule for the 2019-20 season will be contested Saturday afternoon as the Mustangs host San Francisco State on the Richard O'Neill Green.
First bout begins at 3 p.m.
Cal Poly has held several dual meets outdoors over the past five years in the plaza of the University Union. The Richard O'Neill Green, being used for the first time for a dual wrestling meet, is located just north of Alex G. Spanos Stadium and is the site of the Stampede Club Barbecue, held each Saturday prior to home football games.
Cal Poly opened its fourth wrestling season under head coach Jon Sioredas two weeks ago at the Michigan State Open.
Of those expected to compete in Saturday's dual meet, Junior Fernandez placed fifth at 133 pounds while Benny Martinez (125) and Samuel Aguilar (285) both placed sixth, all in the frosh-soph division. Bernie Truax posted a 3-2 mark at 165 pounds in the Open Division.
As in the last few years, the Mustangs are fielding a relatively young group of wrestlers with two seniors and no juniors joining eight freshmen and sophomores in the projected lineup Saturday.
Two-time national qualifier Tom Lane (197 pounds) and Joshy Cortez (149), both seniors, will make their season debuts Saturday.
"We will have many new faces in the lineup this season," said Sioredas. "With several guys coming out of redshirt and a few freshmen wrestling out of the gate, it will make for an exciting year to see how our young team continues to develop and make strides."
Lane is a two-time NCAA qualifier with a 66-43 career mark and is ranked as high as No. 8 by Trackwrestling.com and Nos. 12, 14, 15 and 19 in his weight class by other publications. Cortez (pictured above), a redshirt last year, has 40 career wins to his credit.
Brawley Lamer, a sophomore from Corvallis, Oregon, won 11 matches in open tournaments during his redshirt year and 13 more last season. He is slated to wrestle at 157 pounds this season.
"These guys have exemplified everything our program stands for and are great leaders on and off the mat," said Sioredas. "We cannot wait to get the dual meet season started and embark on the next chapter of Cal Poly Wrestling."
Last meeting between the Mustangs and Gators was in November 2016, Cal Poly earning a 36-7 victory in the University Union Plaza. It was Sioredas' first dual as head coach of the Mustangs and was highlighted by pins from Colton Schilling and Spencer Empey.
Cal Poly leads the all-time series against San Francisco State, 43-2.
San Francisco State, coached by Jason Welch (third season, 13-12, Northwestern '13), a three-time NCAA All-American wrestler and assistant coach at Northwestern, will be led by Maxamillian Schneider at 157 pounds and Justin Pichedwatana at 184.
Last season, Schneider was selected to the All-Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Team at 165 pounds. He posted an 11-4 record with five wins by fall. TheOpenMat.com ranks him at No. 9 at 165 pounds.
In 2018-19, Pichedwatana was 24-11 and earned All-American honors with a seventh-place finish at the NCAA Division II National Championships. Ahead of the 2019-20 season, TheOpenMat.com ranked the All-RMAC Second Team selection at No. 5 at 184 pounds.
One of San Francisco State's assistant coaches is former Mustang wrestler Dominic Kastl, who compiled a 60-23 record at Cal Poly and twice qualified for the NCAA Finals. He was a Pac-12 champion at 165 in 2012 and second at 174 in 2015.
The Gators defeated Vanguard 32-11 in a season-opening dual meet last Friday.
San Francisco State is one of seven teams coming to San Luis Obispo for home dual meets.
Other home duals are against Buffalo on Nov. 23, Drexel on Dec. 19, Northern Illinois on Jan. 10 and Pac-12 duals versus Stanford on Jan. 17, CSU Bakersfield on Feb. 14 and Arizona State on Feb. 15.
A look at each of the 10 weight classes for Cal Poly:
Sophomore Benny Martinez will get the nod this year again at 125 after earning nine victories a year ago. "He had a couple big wins in dual meets last season and has steadily improved over the summer," said Sioredas. First-year freshman Antonio Lorenzo, a Top 100 recruit from St. John Bosco High School, will redshirt this season.
Redshirt freshman Trae Vasquez, a two-time Montana state champion and two-time Fargo All-American, will make his debut this season at 133 pounds. Vasquez did not wrestle in any open tournaments during his redshirt season a year ago. True freshman Junior Fernandez, a California state medalist from Upper Lake High School, will also wrestle this year at 133.
Redshirt freshman Jake Ryan from Oakdale High School will begin his Cal Poly career at 141. Ryan did not compete in any open tournaments during his redshirt season a year ago. Sophomore Wyatt Cornelison, who posted six wins, two via fall, a year ago, will also be competing for the Mustangs at 141 this season.
Joshy Cortez (pictured at left) will come out of his redshirt season as a fifth-year senior. Currently nationally ranked, he was a Pac-12 finalist in 2018, and is one of the team's captains. "Joshy went an impressive 9-2 last year in open tournaments at 157," said Sioredas. "He will descend back down to 149 to make a run during his senior campaign." First-year freshman Legend Lamer, another Top 100 recruit, will redshirt.
Sophomore Brawley Lamer (pictured at right), voted as the most improved wrestler on the 2018-19 team, will be a staple at the 157-pound weight class after posting a 13-15 mark a year ago. "Brawley has been rapidly improving since arriving at Cal Poly," said Sioredas. "One of our team captains, Brawley's lead-by-example style of leadership spreads into our young team."
Bernie Truax, another star recruit a year ago, will be coming out of his redshirt year this season to help lead the Mustangs as a redshirt freshman. Truax, 14-7 with a fall and four technical falls in open tournaments as a redshirt a year ago, was a California state finalist and Fargo All-American. "Up from 149/157 last season, he brings a wealth of wrestling experience to our lineup and will be one to watch as he continues to grow and improve," said Sioredas.
Nathan Tausch is back at 174 as a sophomore after winning six matches with one fall as a true freshman a year ago. "The former California state finalist has continued to develop over the offseason and has grown into the weight class," said Sioredas.
True freshman Trent Tracy from Frontier High School in Bakersfield, another Top 100 recruit from the incoming nationally ranked Mustang recruiting class of 2019, will compete out of the gate at 184. Tracy was a California state champion at 170 pounds in 2018 and placed third in the 2019 state finals, compiling a 78-7 record in his final two prep seasons. True freshman Max Aguirre, also from Frontier High School, will see time in the lineup this season at 184 as well.
Team captain Tom Lane will look to improve on his top-12 finish at the 2019 NCAA National Championship, where he became the first Mustang in seven years to win his first two matches, upsetting the fifth and 12th seeds. "Tom's style of wrestling is fun to watch and has brought Cal Poly wrestling back into the national spotlight," said Sioredas.
Sophomore Sam Aguilar returns after double-digit wins last year as our freshman heavyweight. "Sam has put in the work to get bigger and stronger and has improved dramatically in his wrestling skill," said Sioredas. Top 100 recruit Victor Jaquez out of Bellarmine Prep in San Jose will redshirt this year as a first-year freshman.
San Francisco State at Cal Poly
Cal Poly (0-0)
125 -- Benny Martinez (3-3), Sophomore, Eastlake, Calif.
133 -- Junior Fernandez (4-2), Freshman, Upper Lake, Calif.
141 -- Jake Ryan (0-0), Redshirt Freshman, Oakdale, Calif.
149 -- Joshy Cortez (0-0), Senior, Temecula, Calif.
157 -- Brawley Lamer (1-2), Sophomore, Corvallis, Ore.
165 -- Bernie Truax (3-2), Redshirt Freshman, Oceanside, Calif.
174 -- Nathan Tausch (0-0), Sophomore, Poway, Calif.
184 -- Trent Tracy (0-0), Freshman, Bakersfield, Calif.
197 -- No. 8 Tom Lane (0-0), Senior, Garden City, N.Y.
285 -- Sam Aguliar (3-1), Sophomore, Apple Valley, Calif.
San Francisco State (1-0)
125 -- Tony Margiotta (1-0), Sophomore, Walnut Creek, Calif.
133 -- Nathan Cervantez (0-0), Senior, Pittsburg, Calif.
141 -- Alex Felix (1-0), Freshman (RS), Gilroy, Calif.
149 -- Mason Boutain (1-0), Junior, Benicia, Calif.
157 -- Maxamillian Schneider (1-0), Junior, Chicago, Ill.
165 -- Kurtis Clem (1-0), Junior, Chico, Calif.
174 -- Tyee Ducharme (0-1), Freshman, Vacaville, Calif.
184 -- No. 4 Justin Pichedwatana (1-0), Junior, Lakewood, Calif.
197 -- John Chetwynd (1-0), Senior, San Clemente, Calif.
285 -- Justin Ramos (0-1), Freshman, Folsom, Calif.