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Ceres wrestlers open 2004 season with loss
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The Ceres High wrestling team opened its season with a 40-39 loss to the Calaveras Redskins in a non-league dual meet in Calaveras Wednesday night.

"We should have won it," said Ceres first-year head coach Steve Vieira. "We had a couple of little mistakes that cost us a few matches."

The Bulldogs held a 39-29 lead with just two matches remaining.

"We were winning by 10 points then they got a forfeit to get within four points," Vieira said. The Redskins won the final match to secure a victory over the Bulldogs.

Calaveras beat Ceres 48-30 last season, 63-21 in 2002 and 51-12 in 2001.

"In the past few years, we haven't faired too well against Calaveras," Vieira said. "(This year) we lost by one point."

The Bulldogs won six of 13 matches, including three by pin, two by forfeit and one by decision.

Ceres' Cleo Payne pinned Calaveras' Cory Zaro in the first round in the 130-pound division. Marc Dias pinned Calaveras' Paul Rios in the first round in the 145-pound division. Jake Elwess pinned Calaveras' Matt Berg in the second round in the 189-pound division.

Ceres freshman Steven Chaves defeated Calaveras' Sean Watson 9-2 in the 152-pound division.

Ceres' Russell Bridges won by forfeit in the 215-pound division. Nate Niemeyer won by forfeit in the heavyweight division.

Bulldogs place at tourney

Ceres competed at the Pitman Novice Wrestling Tournament on Saturday. The Bulldogs had two first, six second and two third-place finishers.

"We took 18 wrestlers all together," Vieira said. "Almost everybody won a match or two."

Mike Gonsalez took first in the 125-pound weight division. Niemeyer took first in the heavyweight division. Tubera took second in the 112-pound division. Louis Bracamonte took second in the 125-pound division. Dias took second in the 140-pound division. Steven Chaves took second in the 160-pound division. Russell Bridges took second in the 215-pound division. Justin Larson took second in the 215-pound division with a 3-1 record. Jason Hardenbergh took third in the 112-pound division. Juan Salas took third in the 215-pound division. - By DALE BUTLER / Staff Reporter of The Ceres (Calif.) Courier