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Garcia, German Are Able to Polish Off Medals, Finish 7th


STOCKTON — Will German and Ralph Garcia needed two victories to guarantee medals at the state wrestling meet Saturday. That's exactly what they got.

German, a 171-pound junior from San Fernando High in his third state meet, defeated Brent Jacot of Del Norte, 9-7, to clinch seventh place.

Garcia, a 189-pound senior from Camarillo, won three of his final four matches to secure seventh place.

German beat South Torrance's Adam Neesby, 3-0, and San Leandro's Justin Enright, 9-5, to advance to the medal round.

"All that hard work paid off," said German, who became the fifth City Section wrestler to medal at the state meet. "When you get here, every match is tough. Everybody here is just as good as me."

Garcia's road to seventh place was just as tough. He beat Capuchino's Jahara Matisek, 5-1, and Central Section champion Mariano Sanchez of Reedley, 3-1, to advance to the medal round.

He was pinned by Jeff Webster of Corona Centennial in 4:42 to make the seventh-place match. Granite Bay's Kurt Russell, the Sac-Joaquin Section champion, defaulted because of injury.

German, one of five San Fernando wrestlers at the meet, and his coaches sat in the bleachers near the mat where he took seventh place, soaking it in.

"I think our last state medalist came out of the prehistoric ages," said San Fernando assistant coach John Paez, who is German's adoptive father. "A few years ago we established a youth program for the Los Angeles-area kids. All five of our qualifiers are juniors and they all came from that program.

"And today, they're seeing what it takes to be a state medalist. [German's] an example we're going to use for the rest of our wrestlers."

German is the second Tiger wrestler to place. Jonas Robles finished sixth at 98 pounds in 1986.

The last City wrestler to medal was Jose Barahona of Canoga Park, who was eighth at 135 pounds in 1995.

Calvary Chapel of Santa Ana easily won its record-setting seventh team title. Calvary Chapel outscored runner-up Bakersfield, 180-129.

In the meet's most anticipated match, Bakersfield junior Darrell Vasquez beat three-time champion Jacob Palomino of San Jose Independence, 4-0, at 119 pounds to win his third title.

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