With only eight varsity boys competing in the Sonoma County League championship tournament, the Sonoma Valley High School varsity wrestling team couldn’t overcome the odds of finishing the dual season in third place and having to climb past two teams to win the tourney and repeat as SCL champions.
On Saturday at Elsie Allen in Santa Rosa, the Dragons were officially dethroned by both tournament first-place Analy and dual-meet-season winner Healdsburg, who now reign as SCL co-champions, with Sonoma finishing in overall third-place, followed by Petaluma, El Molino, Piner and Elsie Allen.
While the Sonoma grapplers fell short of their second straight league team title, they did have three individual league champions, with Dragon senior co-captains and four-year varsity starters Harris Meglen and Max Schimm, along with sophomore Dalton Elster, rising to the occasion and winning their weight-class titles.
Schimm was Sonoma’s lone repeat champion, compiling a 2-0 record with one pin, including a technical-fall victory over Healdsburg’s Merlo in the finals to claim the crown at 147 pounds; while Meglen won his title with a 2-0 record with one pin, and a victory over El Molino’s McDonald in the final at 115 pounds; and Elster topped Analy’s Weaver 5-2 in the final to capture the heavyweight-division title. Both Meglen and Elster were second-place SCL medalists last year.
All three Dragon titlists earned return trips to the North Coast Section championships in Newark on Friday, Feb. 28, and Saturday, March 1, and they will be joined by teammates junior Jack Biaggi and sophomores Austin Beltran and Brandon Ruiz, who qualified for NCS as third-place league medal winners.
At the SCL tourney, Sonoma’s Biaggi posted a 3-1 record with one pin at 172 pounds; Beltran had a 2-1 mark with two pins at 182; and Ruiz was 2-1 with a pin at 162.
Also competing for the Dragons – coached by Kyle Baird and Deets Winslow – at the SCLs were freshman Noah Bartolome’s 1-2 with one pin at 140 pounds; and frosh Maclain Goertzen’s 0-2 at 122; while in the league junior varsity tournament, sophomore David Price finished with a 2-1 second-place record at 147; and frosh Victor Vazquez had a 1-2 third-place mark at 128.