Cover Story

Salt River High School senior, Jesus Salazar (pictured) and the rest of the varsity wrestling team go undefeated at the Holiday Multi held at the SRHS gymnasium over the winter break, finishing 4-0.

SRHS Wrestling Squad Dominates the Competition

By Dustin Hughes
Au-Authm Action News

Over the holiday break, most families enjoyed their time off from work and school. A handful of families, however, put in time to work out and kept a keen eye on their food intake as the Salt River High School wrestling team hosted their first of three home tournaments, the Holiday Multi Meet, on December 28.

“During this time of year, it’s important to keep in shape. Two weeks with no action is a long time to do nothing,” said SRHS Wrestling Head Coach Na Humma. It is important for wrestlers to maintain their fitness level, but Humma explained that practicing for two weeks gets old. “That’s why we wanted to host the tournament. [I wanted them to] get some more experience on the mat.”

Four teams joined the SRHS Eagles in the tournament: the San Tan Foothills Sabercats from Queen Creek, the Valley Lutheran Flames of Phoenix, Imagine Prep from Coolidge and the Baboquivari Warriors team from Sells on the sister Tohono O’odham Nation. The tournament lasted about three hours, ensuring that every wrestler who attended got some time in competition. The point system for wrestling is similar to that of track and field. The individual wrestler scores points against his/her opponent, and after each team member competes, the points are added up for the team. The SRHS Eagles finished the meet with a 4-0 record.

“As a team we were undefeated. Overall it went well, and I am satisfied with each wrestler. They are improving their own individual performances.” said Humma.
This was the second time the Eagles had met T.O. in a wrestling tournament. Everyone was getting along and cheering for one another, but when it came to compete against one another, the friendship remained outside the mat. The friendly rivalry continues to build in anticipation of the Salt River Multi wrestling meet on January 28, the same night as Senior Night for the wrestlers. The first match-up begins at 3 p.m.

On January 10-11, Salt River hosted their second meet of the season, the Salt River Invitational. The invitational hosted 16 teams from all over the state, including Tohono O’odham. Salt River individuals placed their highest Jesus Salazar received 4th, Jason James received 6th and Orlanthia Chase received 6th.

“This weekend all of our wrestlers saw some of the best competition they’ve seen all year, and some wrestled some of the best matches of their careers, so far,” said Na Humma. “You can expect a show for our last home meet against TOHS, our kids are hungry for another chance to wrestle at home and we should see some exciting match ups at 120, 132, 195, and 285. We’ll have the advantage of more wrestlers this year, but between our match ups there will be as many as 20 team points up for grabs and TO’s kids are tough and experienced, so it could be anyone’s match.”

For more information on the final home meet on January 28 at 3pm, call Na Humma at (480) 362-2000 or Athletic Director Shawn Lytle at (480) 362-2021.

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