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Pelayo finishes in top 16 at state
CV grappler compiles 19-7 overall record
Nayeli Pelayo starred on Central Valleys varsity girls wrestling team for the second year in a row. Pelayo earned a return trip to the CIF State Championships. - photo by DALE BUTLER/Courier file photo

Central Valley varsity girls wrestling standout Nayeli Pelayo finished in the top 16 while competing in the 191-pound weight division at the seventh annual CIF State Championships this past month in Visalia.

"A realistic goal was to make it to the second day of the tournament," Hawks coach Rob Beckhart said. "And she did. We'd love for her to come back next year and win a medal."

Pelayo compiled a 2-2 record.

She bested Golden Valley's Kayvett Osorio (pin, 1:45) and lost to Ponderosa's Abyah Fields (decision, 3-1) on Feb. 25.

Nayeli topped Pittsburg's Daniella Martinez (pin, 1:32) and was beaten by Oak Hills' Corey Burton (pin, 0:57) on Feb. 24.

Burton took first.

"She was two wins away from placing," Beckhart said. "I'm sure she was feeling a lot of pressure."

Nayeli went 0-2 at the state meet as a sophomore.
"She got a dec
ent draw this year and won some matches," Beckhart said. "She has a tremendous amount of athletic ability. I'd like to have more time with her to refine her technique."

Pelayo amassed a 19-7 overall record this season.

She placed fourth at Masters, third at Regionals and first at the Western Athletic Conference Championships.

She claimed titles at tournaments at Pacheco and Bear Creek.

Nayeli accomplished a first in program history this winter by qualifying for state for the second time.

"Softball is her primary sport," Beckhart said. "We're lucky she's a part of our program. It's pretty incredible what she's been able to do. I can't say it surprises me. Some people are good at whatever they do."