Cream of the Crop

Gilroy’s Martin Gonzalez and Nicolo Naranjo demonstrate a drill

GHS Wrestling Squad is Aiming Big This Season
Gilroy – In sports, being disliked isn’t always a bad thing. Sometimes, it just means you’re good.

After winning three straight Central Coast Section championships and taking sixth in the state last year, the Gilroy wrestling team is in that position.

And the Mustangs have worked hard for it.

“People hate us now and that’s a good thing,” said Gilroy head coach Armando Gonzalez. “When you’re bad, everybody loves you.”

Said senior Daniel Gamez, “For so many years we were the underdog, so it’s good to be on top.”

With a group of returnees that have wrestled together since grammar school, Gilroy comes into the season stronger than ever. The Mustangs, who are currently ranked 22nd in the nation, lost one senior and return four wrestlers who placed in the top eight at the California Interscholastic Federation State Championships last year. A tweaked conditioning program has also added strength to the Mustangs’ already rigorous pre-season training. Gilroy head coach Armando Gonzalez said the coaching staff learned from camps over the summer.

“The team is in better shape than it’s ever been,” said junior Rudy Maldonado (125 lbs.) “In conditioning, we’re breaking barriers for time (in the mile run.)”

Now Gilroy, which has the chance to become just the second team to win four straight CCS titles this year, is one of the top teams in California and expected to be in Bakersfield’s Rabobank Arena come March.

“In my eight years as head coach, it wasn’t until two years ago that we got ourselves into that arena (for the state championships),” Gonzalez said.

Since then, the state championships have been the focus of the Mustang wrestlers.

“A state championship as a team is the No. 1 goal,” said senior Adin Dueñas (135 lbs.), who took seventh place in the state at 130 last spring.

The Mustangs could have some individual state champions also before all is said and done.

Senior Armando Gonzalez, who signed with Fresno St. last Wednesday, returns for his final year under his dad’s regime. As a junior, he finished third in the state at 130 lbs. This year, he’s moving up to 135.

“I think out of the four years I’ve been here, this team has the most potential,” Gonzalez said.

Also returning is junior Nico Naranjo, a fourth place finisher at state last year, who will fill the 112-pound spot.

After a successful 8th place finish as a freshman at 160 lbs., sophomore Hunter Collins will look to do damage at 171 this year. In his favor, the state’s top eight 171-pounders from last season were all seniors.

For seniors Gonzalez and Dueñas, this is the last chance to make a run for and individual state title.

“It’s the last year. We’ve got to come out with a bang,” Dueñas said. “My goal is to be the state champion and hopefully the national champion, too.”

Though big brother Armando is approaching the end of his high school wrestling career, Martin Gonzales is just getting started. However, another Gonzalez is just getting his high school wrestling career started. The freshman will wrestle at 103 and is poised to be the next young standout on the team.

Gilroy will get a better understanding of where it stands nationwide at the Reno Tournament of Champions Dec. 19-20, which attracts 100 of the best high school teams in the country.

Until then, the Mustangs will stay focused.

“The team’s been not just placed here,” Maldonado said. “We’ve had to work hard like never before.”

Mustangs Wrestling

2004-2005 Result

• 6th place at CIF State Championships

• CCS Champions

• Four individuals placed in top 8 at state championships

Armando Gonzalez – 3rd, 135lbs.

Nico Naranjo – 4th, 103lbs.

Adin Dueñas – 7th, 130lbs.

Hunter Collins – 8th, 160lbs.

Boys Roster

Weight Wrestler Year

103 Martin Gonzalez Fr.

112 Nicolo Naranjo Jr.

119 Tim Ibañez So.

125 Rudy Maldonado Jr.

130 Chris Krough Jr.

135 Adin Dueñas Sr.

140 Armando Gonzalez Sr.

145 Ismael Gutierrez Jr.

152 Austin Gubrud Jr.

160 Mike Ayres Sr.

171 Hunter Collins So.

189 Andres Barragan Jr.

215 Daniel Gamez Sr.

Hvywt Luis Chavez Sr.

2005-2006 Gilroy Boys Basketball Schedule

(All Home Games in Bold)

Date Opponent Time

12/2 Zinkin Classic TBA

12/3 Zinkin Classic TBA

12/19 Reno TOC TBA

12/20 Reno TOC TBA

1/4 Palma 5:30pm

1/6 Doc Buchanan TBA

1/7 Doc Buchanan TBA

1/11 @ North Salinas 5:30pm

1/13 Five Counties TBA

1/14 Five Counties TBA

1/18 Live Oak 5:30pm

1/25 @ Sobrato 5:30pm

1/27 Mid Cals (@ Gilroy) 10:00am

1/28 Mid Cals (@ Gilroy) 9:30am

2/2 Salinas 5:30pm

2/8 San Benito 5:30pm

2/11 TCAL Finals (@ Gilroy) 5:30pm

2/17 CCS Prelims TBA

2/18 CCS Prelims TBA

3/3 State Finals TBA

3/4 State Finals TBA

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