Green Valley wrestling coach Jon Ferry says junior Steele Dias has the best “poker face” he’s ever seen.
“You couldn’t tell after a big win or after a frustrating loss,” Ferry said. “Doesn’t show a lot of emotion one way or the other.”
Fortunately for Ferry and the Gators, he wins a lot more than he loses.
Dias packs prototypical strength, balance and agility into his 113-pound frame and has grown into one of the best wrestlers in Las Vegas and on the West Coast.
He cruised to the Class 4A state championship in the 106-pound weight class last season, and has competed in some of the most prestigious tournaments on the West Coast en route to a 37-4 record in 2017-18.
Colleges are taking notice, too. Dias said he’s heard from multiple Division I wrestling programs — none more notable than academic juggernaut Stanford.
“I want to be more successful. I want to go to college,” Dias said. “I want to get education, and wrestling can help out with that.”
Dias started wrestling as a sixth-grader in the Gators’ youth program and fell in love with the feeling of victory.
He traveled all over the country to compete in tournaments against some of the nation’s best wrestlers and racked up dozens of first-place finishes in freestyle and Greco-Roman invitationals during his formative years.
“Whenever I get my hand raised, I feel accomplished,” Dias said.
And he was quite accomplished when he arrived at Green Valley.
Ferry said Dias’ goal from the start was to win a state championship, and he fulfilled that with his 106-pound title in 2017.
He’s eager for the opportunity to repeat next month, too, and the coach said the athlete competes with an uncanny drive that helps propel the rest of his teammates.
“He definitely rises to the occasion,” Ferry said. “He separates himself just by his pure love for the sport.”
Dias’ recruitment is still in its infancy as he figures out the test scores he needs for admission into the schools he fancies.
Ferry expects a multitude of suitors by the end of Dias’ prep career, and belabored that whatever program he chooses will get a high-character kid with a passion for wrestling.
“He’s got opportunities,” Ferry said. “It’s going to be a matter of where he wants to go. I think any college program at any level would be a joy to have him. That would be a great get for any school.”
Gorman wrestler honored
Bishop Gorman senior wrestler Joey Mazzara was named the Adidas national wrestler of the week after winning the 170-pound championship at the Rockwell Rumble in Orem, Utah.
Mazzara, who has signed to wrestle collegiately at North Carolina, posted a 6-0 record with five pins. He is the 14th-ranked recruit in the 170-pound weight class, per FloWrestling.
Centennial girls No. 8
Centennial’s girls basketball team is ranked No. 8 in the nation in USA Today’s Super 25. The Bulldogs (19-3) have defeated all their Southern Nevada opponents by at least 33 points.