Palo Alto Weekly

Sports - February 19, 2010

Gunn and Paly hoping to pin down CCS honors

Palo Alto freshman Trent Marshall won the lightest weight division and Gunn's Jake Cherry took the heaviest. In between, Palo Alto sophomore Kalen Gans won at 162 to highlight local efforts at the SCVAL Championships on Saturday at the old Blackford High.

Palo Alto finished third in the team standings on Saturday with 174 points while Gunn was fifth with 136.5.

Despite being unseeded Marshall captured the 105-pound title while Cherry too the 287-pound division. Gans, the top seed in his division, defended that lofty spot by providing the third individual crown as all advanced to the Central Coast Section championships on Friday and Saturday at Independence High in San Jose.

Action begins each day at 9 a.m., with finals on Saturday starting at 7 p.m.

Marshall, Gans and Cherry are among a combined 15 Palo Alto and Gunn wrestlers who qualified for CCS by finishing in the top five on Saturday. Other top qualifiers included Paly's Nick Ortiz (second at 114), Paly's Jack Sakai (second at 132), Gunn's Stefan Weidemann (second at 142), and Gunn's Spencer Jones (second at 191). Both Weidemann and Jones were No. 1 seeds in their respective divisions and undefeated this season before being upset in the finals.

Gunn qualifiers for CCS are: Cherry (285), Weidemann (140), Jones (189), Yoni Alon (130), Eric Schmidt (160), Jon Chaplin (215).

Palo Alto qualifiers for CCS are: Marshall (105), Ortiz (112), Joey Christopherson (119), Sakai (130), Max Simon (152), Gans (160), Michael Cullen (171), AJ Castillo (215), and Jose Tochez (285).

Paly's Simon received a No. 5 seed at 152 for CCS and Sakai was seeded No. 6 at 130. Castillo, Marshall, Ortiz and Gans will earn No. 6 seeds if a seeded wrestler ahead of them does not weigh in or does not make weight. All, however, are entered along with Gunn's non-seeded competitors.

At the SCVAL finals, Marshall pinned No. 1 seed Santosh Swamnathan of Harker in his first match, won his semifinal by pin over No. 4 seed Kyle Downs of Los Gatos and in the championship posted an 8-6 decision over the No. 2 seed from Saratoga.

Gans won his first match by pin over Andrew Pappas of Monta Vista, took hhis semifinal by pin over Steven Borque of Los Gatos and in the finals posted an 11-6 decision over Kyle Clark of Saratoga.

Cherry, who was unseeded, surprised everyone by pinning the top seed from Homestead in the finals in a dramatic come-from-behind victory. Cherry was out-weighed by almost 90 pounds.

At the PAL Championships, Andre Delagnes of Menlo-Atherton qualified for CCS after taking second in his weight class teammates while Koji Kameda (140) and Steven Gregory (145) both finished third.

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