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Three CHS wrestlers bring home titles from Western Athletic Conference tourney
Ceres High seniors Gabe Balderas, Ruben Sanchez and Armando Morales claimed gold while competing at the Western Athletic Conference Wrestling Championships on Saturday in Los Banos.

"That was expected," head coach Jon Nowicki said.

Balderas added to his already-impressive resume.

Gabe, a two-time state-meet qualifier, won his third straight league title.

He claimed the 115-pound crown this year.

Balderas compiled a 3-0 record.

He beat Central Catholic's Danny Abbate (decision, 5-0) and Livingston's Rainier Colina (major decision, 14-4).

He was also awarded a forfeit victory.

"Gabe is one of the best wrestlers to come through Ceres," Nowicki said. "There's only one thing missing from his resume, which is a state medal."

Sanchez (222s, 3-0) won by forfeit, and defeated Central Catholic's Ryan McLean (decision, 4-2) and Los Banos' Bailey Rodriguez (pin, 3:42)

Morales (287s, 3-0) won by forfeit, and defeated Livingston's Rafael Millan (pin, 1:22) and Pacheco's Everardo Santillan (decision, 3-0)

Bulldog teammates David Cisneros, Abel Morales, Daniel Raya, Nick Santibanez and Micah Young placed in the top four in their respective weight classes at the WAC tournament and will join Gabe, Ruben and Armando at Divisionals this week. Rudy Gonzales qualified as well.

"The kids did a great job," Nowicki said. "Overall as a team, we performed to our abilities."

Cisneros won two of three matches on his way to a runner-up finish in the 147-pound bracket at the WAC tournament.

David defeated Pacheco's Nathan Bristow (pin, 2:53) and Los Banos' Noah Camacho (decision, 7-4).

He lost to Patterson's Joey Howard (decision, 5-4).

Sophomore Abel Morales placed second with a 2-1 record at 184 pounds.

Morales won by forfeit and upset top-seeded Reggie Bland of Central Catholic (decision, 6-5).

He lost to Central Valley's Adrian Vizcaino (pin, 1:02).

"That's a huge accomplishment," Nowick said while talking about Abel's runner-up finish.

Raya (128s, 3-1) and Santibanez (134s, 3-1) both took third.

Daniel defeated Pacheco's Martin Perez (decision, 12-8), Central Valley's Angel Gonzales (pin, 4:40) and Patterson's Josh Roberts (decision, 8-6).

Nick defeated Central Valley's Logan Dowling (major decision, 9-0) and Pacheco's Salvador Rostro (pin, 0:59). He also won by forfeit.

Young (108s, 2-2) took fourth.

Micah defeated Livingston's Jatin Anad (decision, 6-5) and Central Catholic's Jarod Nickolson (major decision, 10-2).

He lost to Central Valley's Isaiah Gonzales (major decision, 18-5) and Anad (pin, 5:01).

Rudy Gonzales (197s, 2-2) placed fifth.

Gonzales won by forfeit twice.

He lost to Patterson's Francisco Placencia (major decision, 12-3) and Pacheco's Brandon Villarreal (pin, 3:17).

Tyree Williams (172s, 2-2) placed fifth and was named an alternate for Divisionals.

Williams defeated Livingston's Cody Carter (decision, 6-4) and Patterson's Brad Gill (pin, 2:35).

He lost to Central Valley's Joaquin Garcia (pin, 4:00) and Los Banos' Markus Rico (decision, 6-1).

Joey Bettencourt (122s, 1-3), Drake Anderson (162s, 1-3) and Austin Moore (154s, 1-3) finished sixth.

Bettencourt won by forfeit.

Anderson defeated Livingston's Miguel Flores (decision, 13-8).

Moore defeated Pacheco's Thomas Cardenas (pin, 0:48).

Gabe Solis (140s, 0-2) did not place.

Ceres High finished third overall (151) in WAC team standings.

Crosstown-rival Central Valley (126) took fourth.