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Livingston ends CVs wrestling win streak
Central Valley 138-pounder Christian Oliver won by technical fall (16-1) against Livingstons Juan Garcia. - photo by DALE BUTLER/The Courier

Central Valley's varsity boys wrestling program suffered its first loss in Western Athletic Conference dual-meet competition in over three years this past week.

The Hawks opened the WAC season with a 42-32 loss to visiting Livingston Wednesday night in Ceres.

Central Valley won 18 straight conference matches from 2014-16.

"It was pretty special," Hawks head coach Rob Beckhart said while talking about his team's run of dominance against WAC opponents. "It's something we never aimed for. We had a team good enough to win tonight. We just didn't get it done. Give credit to Livingston. They wanted it a little more than we did. We need to work harder and be better prepared next week."

Livingston seized the momentum by winning seven of the first nine matches on its way to building a commanding 36-8 lead.

Christian Oliver and Angel Rico accounted for Central Valley's two victories.

Oliver won by technical fall (16-1) over Juan Garcia in the 138-pound weight division.

Angel Rico won by decision (8-7) over Felix Lorenzo at 195 pounds.

Robert Scheer lost by pin (0:39) to Livingston's Christian Peralta at 126 pounds.

Will Sprouse lost by pin (2:21) to Raj Chahal at 132 pounds.

Severo Vazquez lost by decision (7-2) to Johnathan Cisneros at 145 pounds.

Ryan Palecek lost by pin (2:50) to Luis Sanchez at 152 pounds.

James Murphy lost by decision (8-4) to Gio Gutierrez at 160 pounds.

Nate Curry lost by pin (4:48) to Juan Ornales at 170 pounds.

Natanael Lezama lost by pin (3:39) to Brayan Negrete at 182 pounds.

"It's not a surprise it happened," Beckhart said. "Livingston has a good team. They have some great wrestlers. It's not easy to win. The thing with a dual meet, a team gets on a roll and it's hard to stop. Unfortunately, we got a little too far behind. We battled back. The kids are disappointed. Nobody likes to lose. The thing they need to remember is we were in it until the last match."

The Hawks rallied on the strength of dominant performances by Tyler Beckhart, David Lezama and Kyle Hendrix.

Beckhart won by pin (2:44) over Jorge Giron at 220 pounds.

Lezama won by pin (1:15) over Macario Castro at 285 pounds.

Hendrix won by pin (1:33) over Dennis Brusenski at 113 pounds.

Central Valley's Joseph Martinez won by forfeit at 106 pounds.

The Hawks faced a surmountable 36-32 deficit going into the evening's last match.

Central Valley's Antonio Castillo lost by pin (0:40) to Livingston's John Lopez at 120 pounds.

"If he pins his opponent, we win that dual meet," coach Beckhart said. "But that's not the reason we lost the match. We're young. We made some mistakes. I don't think we underestimated Livingston. I think we overestimated ourselves. When you win that many times in a row, complacency sets in sometimes. Losing isn't a bad thing. It helps you refocus. It reminds you it's really difficult to win."

Central Valley dropped to 5-5 on the year and 0-1 in the WAC.

Livingston improved to 1-0 in the conference standings.

"The fact that we lost doesn't preclude us from (the race for the WAC overall title)," Rob Beckhart said. "But we've officially allowed other teams to influence the end of the season for us. We need to take care of business ourselves and get help from other teams. We'll be tested the next couple of weeks and we'll see if we're up to the challenge."

Central Valley's unbeaten streak against conference dual-meet competition spanned three years.

The Hawks claimed their second straight WAC overall championship last winter.

"There were a lot of people that contributed to our success," coach Beckhart said.