By Cerwin D Haynes
(Photos by Tadzio Garcia)
At yesterday's CCCAA South Regionals, the East Los Angeles College Huskies successfully qualified seven of its wrestlers into the State Championships next week in Fresno. The best performance was turned in by Emmanuel Zepeda who earned 2nd place in the 157lb bracket. Teammate Doroteo Lopez was right behind him in third place, while his brother, Nicholas Lopez, finished 5th in the 165lb bracket. The other four Husky qualifiers are Salvador Alvarez (5th place, 125lbs), Josue Aguilar (3rd place, 149lbs), Juan Zapien (5th place, 184lbs) and David Aranda (4th place, 285lbs). In each weight class, the top six finishers advance to State.
As a team, ELAC finished 4th overall with 126 points. Cerritos was best in points (216.5), followed by Bakersfield (188.5 points) and Mt. San Antonio (168 points). "I'm pleased and proud those who qualified," said longtime head coach Ralph Valle. "The same is true for our guys who wrestled in the Regional tournament and came up short. It was an exceptionally tough tournament this year. ELAC Wrestlers always wrestle tough... win or lose."
Although happy for his guys who made it, Coach Valle wanted a few more from the team to advance as well. "We were hoping nine or 10 would qualify," he said.
Fresno City College is the host for next week's Championships. The Rams won the NoCal Regionals yesterday.