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Posted on Jan 5, 2019

Lady Jacks wrestlers stay active at Hanford

When you’re on a roll, you’re on a roll.
Expecting to take their largest contingent of wrestlers to Hanford’s Winter Cup, the Lady Jacks ended up taking only five grapplers, decimated by injuries and a holiday bug that shrunk their delegation but not their effort.
“We took the smallest lineup we have taken to a tournament all year,” head coach Devan Silva said. “But it was good.”
The Lady Jacks continued their string of stout performances at the Girls Winter Cup in the Tri-Cities.
Always a showcase for some strong competition, this year’s Winter Cup was no exception, and that helped the Lady Jacks get a true measurement of their season, Silva said.
“Everybody had the chance to wrestle someone who’s supposed to be the best at their weight class,” Silva said, adding that the girls from Quincy faced and passed the tough test.
“Each of our wrestlers showed they are willing to go out there against anybody,” he said.
Even when they lost, they held their own. Like freshman Juana Giron, who almost beat defending state runner-up Mya Spencer from Ephrata, who went on to win the bracket.
“Juana went out there with the right mentality” and she nearly pinned her, Silva said. “She ended up losing, but she caught Mya, and threw her to her back and she got a full count of a near-fall and a takedown for it.”
Cynthia Diaz, who finished fifth, wrestling for the first time this year at 115 lbs. also showed some grit, overcoming her first loss of the season to eventual tourney champ Stephani Blankenship of Sunnyside to win her next two matches and finish fifth.
Diaz beat Grandview’s Liliana Luna in the first round, and Davis’ Anjelique Alcala, before losing to Blankenship. She then beat Karen Valladares of Wapato 10-2 and standout Sofia Correa of Pasco 9-0.
“That’s the biggest test of where a kid is mentally, if they can take a defeat, and win the rest of ‘em. And she absolutely did,” Silva said.
Next up for the team is a bye this week and then a busy time with a double-dual at home that includes Wapato, Grandview and Othello at 6 p.m., Jan. 10.
Then comes the Lady Huskie Invitational starting in Othello the very next day, at 5 p.m. and on Saturday at 10 a.m.

By Sebastian Moraga,