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Las Vegas wrestlers in control

WINNEMUCCA — Las Vegas High has won nine consecutive Sunrise Region wrestling titles, but hasn’t taken the state’s top prize since 2002.

The Wildcats moved a step closer to their fourth state championship Friday, taking the first-day lead at the Class 4A state meet at the Winnemucca Events Center.

Las Vegas leads with 27 points and advanced seven wrestlers to the semifinals, along with a nonscoring heavyweight.

Cimarron-Memorial is second with 21 points, followed by Shadow Ridge (11), Green Valley (10) and Canyon Springs (9).

“It was a good day for us,” Las Vegas coach Aric Thomas said. “We won most of the ones we expected to win and some we had to earn a little harder.

“We won one or two that we knew we would be in a scrap for. We’ve definitely got to be more polished Saturday.”

The semifinals will begin at 10:45 a.m. today, with the finals scheduled for 3:45 p.m.

Las Vegas wrestlers in the semifinals are: Nathan Garcia (103 pounds), De’Armon Hall (112), Brett Sampson (119), Johnathan Hales (171), David Prieto (189), Trey McElhaney (215) and heavyweight Madison Hales. Heavyweight Austin Woo advanced as an independent.

Sunset Region champion Cimarron has five semifinalists, led by two-time state champion Britain Longmire (119). He is joined by Travis DeGroat (130), Colbey Garrison (135), Brogan Ashjian (145) and Aaron Garcia (189).

“We weren’t particularly pleased with our first day, but we still have another,” Cimarron coach Mike Garcia said. “Hopefully the kids will do better. Las Vegas looks like they had a pretty good day.

“We made a few mistakes and fell apart in a couple of matches and just need to bring it together.”

Shadow Ridge’s Jordan Kurth (160) and Michael Tootle (171) reached the semifinals, as did Green Valley’s Mason Saldana (119) and Daniel Allen (140).

Mojave, the two-time defending state champion, is tied for 16th with six points.

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