Goodbye Senior Wrestlers

by Kayla Faasse and Bailey Campbell

On Wednesday, Jan. 23, the senior Panthers take on the Bonanza Bengals in the last dual meet of their high school career.

Coming off a Championship performance at the Chaparral Invitational and a pinning win from the Arbor View duals, Captain Grey Garcia wrestled his 122nd career victory tonight.

This was Garcia’s fourth year on varsity for the Panthers and his second year as a captain. Garcia pinned his Bengal opponent giving him another win to add on to his record.

“I usually don’t rack up a lot of pins when I wrestle just because it’s not my typical wrestling style,” Garcia explains, talking about his style of wrestling.

Garcia’s senior wrestling season landed him with a record of 37-6 with 16 wins by pinning his opponent.

“I use an armbar a lot, which is not something you necessarily see a lot of people use, but I fell in love with it as a kid and it’s just kind of instinctual at this point,” said Garcia.

Paul Lee returned to the lineup from a mid-season injury last night with an amazing win against Arbor View and managed to score a win with a pin tonight against his Bonanza Bengal opponent.

One thing Lee is proud of from his wrestling season is “dislocating [his] right elbow three times”, which was his mid-season injury.

Palo’s senior girls were represented by Dallas Gomez and Tatum Pine, who was recently ranked number twelve in USA high school girls in her weight class.

“The fastest I’ve ever pinned anyone this season was 39 seconds but throughout my career, it is 20 seconds,” said Tatum Pine.

Gomez won her 100th high school career match tonight by a forfeit.

“The senior leadership exceeded our expectations with their work ethic and positive attitude this season for a very young team,” Coach Lytle stated.

They started the night off with weight class 152 to heavyweight before taking a short intermission for half time, where the Panthers’ dance team came out and performed for the audience.

They continued on with the beginning weight class of 106 to 145. In both halves of the duals, the Panthers showed off their strength and overcame their opponents, coming out as the victors in the tournament.

“I really like the time I get to spend with my teammates. There is a lot of waiting involved in wrestling and with good teammates like I have a lot of fun during the downtime,” stated Garcia.