Ceres High's varsity boys wrestling team earned a hard-fought 43-26 win while battling crosstown-rival Central Valley last Wednesday.
Spencer Nelson, nicknamed Mr. Clutch for his ability to excel under pressure, gave the Bulldogs an insurmountable 37-26 lead with a 16-2 major-decision victory over Hawk 195-pounder Natanael Lezama.
"One of the reasons I have that nickname is whenever my coach needs a win or pin, I deliver," Spencer said. "He has a lot of confidence in me."
Nelson helped Ceres High spoil Central Valley's Senior Night and secure a winning record during the Western Athletic Conference dual season.
The Bulldogs (3-2) and Hawks (2-3) placed third and fourth, respectively, in the WAC standings.
"I've never wrestled at Ceres High not having a winning team record," Nelson said. "It would have sucked if we had a losing record."
Ceres High's Daniel McElwain, Ethan Letras, Edison Jimenez, Shanald Lal, Sonald Lal, Elias Saldana and Jaden Cooper also collected individual victories versus Central Valley.
McElwain won by pin (1:33) against Moises Galeana at 220 pounds.
Letras won by pin (2:30) against Nathan Curry at 160 pounds.
Jimenez won by pin (2:50) against Alan Chavez at 138 pounds.
Shanald Lal won by pin (2:51) against Prabhjot Singh at 113 pounds.
Sonald Lal won by pin (4:35) against Jesse Vazquez at 106 pounds.
Saldana won by pin (5:06) against Bryant Angulo at 285 pounds.
Cooper won by decision (8-3) against James Murphy at 152 pounds.
Central Valley's Ryan Palecek, Michael Duran, Kyle Hendrix, Roman Ramirez, Anthony Voss and Thomas Carrillo accounted for Central Valley's individual victories.
Palecek won by pin (1:52) against Andrew Gibson at 170 pounds.
Duran won by pin (1:54) against Ricky Gonzales at 126 pounds.
Hendrix won by major decision (12-0) against Marcus Martinez at 132 pounds.
Ramirez won by major decision (8-0) against Christian Ibarra at 145 pounds.
Voss won by decision (8-2) against Rafael Ortiz at 120 pounds.
Carrillo won by decision (9-7) against Allen Thy in overtime at 182 pounds.
Palecek and Carrillo posted back-to-back wins to cut the deficit to 33-26 with two matches remaining.
"They made it competitive at the end," Spencer said.
Nelson dashed Central Valley's comeback bid with a dominant victory.
"I love those moments," Spencer said.