Entering the Sunrise Region wrestling tournament, Liberty’s Rudy Reveles knew each match against host Las Vegas High would be crucial.
The Patriots senior did all he could to help his squad in Friday’s early rounds.
The 171-pound Reveles defeated the Wildcats’ Cornelius Brown 10-4 to advance to today’s semifinals.
Green Valley led after the first two rounds with 86 points, followed by Las Vegas with 66. Foothill (61), Liberty (55) and Desert Pines (49) rounded out the top five.
Reveles led 3-2 entering the third period before taking control.
“I was playing as more of a defensive wrestler. I guess I was just a little nervous with my first time wrestling him,” Reveles said. “Then I kind of got mad, definitely more aggressive, and that’s when I got in control of the match. I just relaxed and kept my cool.”
The two-time state qualifier started the final period in the down position but immediately stood up and spun into Brown for an escape and a takedown, a 3-point swing.
Reveles’ win helped Liberty remain within striking distance of the Gators and Wildcats after the first day.
“I knew I had to come out (strong) for the team,” said Reveles, who pushed his record to 45-8. “Us and Vegas, we’re two of the top teams, and our coach said it would probably come down to us and them wrestling each other. I knew I just had to man up and beat him.”
Briant Peterson (119), Anthony Kaulili (130), Ian Wilson (140), Anthony Terrell (160) and Spencer Hill-Hale (189) also advanced to the semifinals for Liberty, giving Reveles confidence that he can lead his team on a postseason run.
Liberty’s Erek Cisneros (189) also made a semifinal run as a nonscoring wrestler.
“It’s my senior year, so this is my last year,” Reveles said. “I’ve been to state for two years, and I want to win it all. I know how it feels to lose, and I don’t want that feeling of regret.”
Deandre Seals provided a spark for Desert Pines, defeating Green Valley’s David Hosey 18-5 in the quarterfinals.
“I’ve got to show what a leader has to do, how to wrestle and take up the whole leadership role, in school and every time I step on the mat,” said Seals, Desert Pines’ only four-year wrestler. “I just figure things I have to do, and then I just try my best to stay focused and be the leading example for the team.”
Seals was the Northeast League’s top seed at 152 pounds after finishing the regular season 40-1. His loss was against Las Vegas’ Napoleon Aniciete, the defending state champion who dropped to the league’s No. 2 seed after sitting out several matches with injuries.
But that loss has given Seals more incentive to keep winning.
“It kind of motivated me to beat whoever steps in my way,” Seals said, “so that hopefully I can get revenge next time. I hope to see him in the finals.”
Green Valley had semifinalists in nine of the 13 weight classes, and Las Vegas advanced six to the semifinals.
Today’s competition will begin at 10 a.m.
At Las Vegas High