Two STHS students wrestle to state
South Tahoe High senior Nick Alexander and junior Ryan Davis are taking a few days off school to hit the mats in Las Vegas before relaxing for winter break.
The 2002 4A state wrestling championships begin Friday, Feb. 14 at Las Vegas High School. The tournament will conclude Saturday with championship matches at 6 p.m.
Both fifth-seed wrestlers are poised to take on the top seeds from the Southern division. This is the first time either has had the opportunity to test their meddle against the state’s top wrestlers.
Both wrestlers enjoyed a light workout Wednesday after wrestling the day before.
“We gotta ride (the training bikes) for 10 more minutes, then we’re done,” Davis said Wednesday, a 171-pounder originally from Germany. “It’s all about the conditioning now.”
Davis will face Rusty Worthen from Palo Verde on Friday in the traditional 16-man bracket tournament. Five wrestlers are from the Northern Region, five from the Sunrise Region and five from the Sunset Region in the south.
Alexander, a189-pounder who also plays baseball and football, will meet Rodrick Atwood from Cimarron-Memorial High in the double-elimination tournament.
Alexander was trying to shed 2 pounds before the weigh-in Friday morning. Davis, the lucky one, was actually trying to gain weight.
Davis qualified for state after wrestling in one match at the Nevada 4A regional tournament last Saturday. He won his other match by default when his opponent from McQueen declined to wrestle after bruising his ribs.
His plan before heading down Thursday was to get lots of sleep, concentrate on his performance and keep his mind off things that would make him nervous.
“We gotta attack them, don’t stall and be aggressive basically,” he said of his coaches’ advice.
Alexander said he feels good going into the tournament. Last year, he broke his right ankle, but it’s fully healed and responding fine.
“I did it to myself,” he said, describing a wrestling move that pulled his opponent off his feet but over his shin. He said wanted to keep wrestling, but the coach heard the break and threw in the towel.
STHS wrestling coach Jack Lopez and assistant coach Jim Kruk drove to Las Vegas ahead of their wrestlers on Thursday.
“This is indeed the biggest tourney they’ve been in in their wrestling career,” Lopez said.
“(Ryan and Nick) are both coaching the (South Tahoe Middle School) team, so they go down after us,” he added.