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VALLEY / VENTURA COUNTY SPORTS | HIGH SCHOOL WRESTLING

Pacific View Has Three-Way Battle

February 02, 2001|DANNY SCHUMACHER

Three's a crowd in the Pacific View League. But not for long.

Saturday's league finals at Hueneme will break a tie for first place between Camarillo, Rio Mesa and Hueneme. The winner will gain the league's top entry in the Southern Section Division IV team playoffs next week.

Defending champion Camarillo forced the deadlock, defeating Rio Mesa, 33-30, Tuesday. Hueneme, Camarillo and Rio Mesa each finished with 3-1 records in league duals.

A Camarillo victory will push Rio Mesa to second because of the Spartans' victory over Hueneme.

"I see Camarillo having the slight edge," Hueneme Coach Juan Flores said. "They're going to have more guys in the finals."

The Scorpions have the region's top wrestler in 189-pounder Ralph Garcia. The defending Division IV champion is 34-3.

Garcia is ranked No. 8 in California by wrestlingreport.com.

Among the anticipated matchups is a 103-pound final between Camarillo's Jake Nishimura and Hueneme's Rufino Giles.

Nishimura defeated Giles, 15-14, at the Camarillo tournament in December, but Giles won a 5-1 decision in the Vikings' upset over Camarillo two weeks ago.

Hueneme's Ramiro Ruiz and Rio Mesa's Mike Dominguez could meet in a pivotal 215-pound final.

Dominguez is the defending league champion, but Ruiz did not compete because of a death in his family. Two weeks later, Ruiz received an at-large berth in the Division IV individual tournament.

Ruiz has been hindered by a groin pull the last two weeks.

"It's going to be the upsets in the middle weights that could determine the outcome," Flores said.

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Camarillo Coach Ron Wilson brought several former wrestlers to Monday's team meeting.

The message: No one wanted to see Rio Mesa celebrate a league championship at Camarillo.

"We just told [the wrestlers] that they didn't want to have any regrets and that they should come out and leave everything on the mat," Wilson said. "Now it's going to be settled on Saturday."

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Regional teams will have a tough time when seeding meetings are held for next week's Southern Section playoffs.

Only three teams in the region are ranked in section polls.

Ventura, which advanced to the semifinals before losing to eventual section and state champion Santa Ana Calvary Chapel last year, is No. 7 in Division I.

In Division IV, nine-time Golden League champion Highland is No. 9 and Hueneme is tied for No. 10.

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Crespi, Chaminade, Harvard-Westlake and Alemany are expected to form a new Mission League next season.

The departure of Chaminade and Alemany would leave the Frontier League with only three teams--Fillmore, Calabasas and Santa Paula.

Southern Section rules prohibit league's with fewer than four schools. Malibu, a former Frontier member, dropped its program midway through last season.

Crespi, a first-year program, is competing this season as an independent.

Harvard-Westlake is in the Rio Hondo League.

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San Fernando and El Camino Real, the City Section's top two teams, will meet in a dual Thursday at El Camino Real.

San Fernando's Will German, a two-time City champion, will meet Andreik De Leon of El Camino Real in a 171-pound match.

German is 2-0 against De Leon this season but needed overtime to defeat his rival at the North Torrance tournament in January. De Leon is coming off a 4-3 upset last week over Ventura's Bobby Taylor, a Times' all-region pick last season.

De Leon is the defending City champion at 171 pounds. German won the 161-pound title.

(BEGIN TEXT OF INFOBOX / INFOGRAPHIC)

The Top 10

Rankings of wrestling teams in the region

*--*

RK LW School (League) 1 1 Ventura (Channel) 2 3 Simi Valley (Marmonte) 3 4 Hueneme (Pacific View) 4 5 Camarillo (Pacific View) 5 2 Rio Mesa (Pacific View) 6 6 El Camino Real (City) 7 8 Highland (Golden) 8 7 San Fernando (City) 9 9 Palmdale (Golden) 10 10 Quartz Hill (Golden)

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