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Riverbank Wrestling Numbers On The Increase
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After attracting only four or five boys for the last wrestling season, Riverbank High School has all of 14 boys on the mats this year.

With a wrestler available at virtually every weight level, RHS could have fielded a full team and taken part in dual meets, said coach Jerry Pief.

Bu the schedule had to be fixed before the numbers were known. So the Bruins again will compete only individually in invitationals and tournaments.

A school has to offer a contender for at least seven out of the 14 weight classes, Pief said. The Trans Valley League used to have only 13 classes. But it added a 14th, at 215 pounds, to fill the large gap between 189 and 275 pound classes and entice "people like football linebackers," he said.

Reviewing his talent for this year by weight class, Pief noted that he has David Gomez at 112 pounds, a junior and brother to former state qualifier Hugo Gomez who wrestled at 119 pounds in 2002-2003.

At 119 pounds, the Bruins have either Martin Moreno, a senior and fourth place finisher in the TVL last year, or Tim McDonald, an up-and- coming 9th-grader.

At 125 pounds is Rain Darden, another 9th-grader who shows a lot of promise and natural ability.

At 130 pounds is Rodney Robbins, younger brother to Jason Robbins, who placed at the State Tournament for Riverbank in the 1990s.

The 135-pound class features Tony (Anthony) Winstead, a junior who is very tough and has great prospects.

Jason Canada, a strong and eager 12th-grader fills the 140 pound weight class.

At 145 pounds is another 12th grader, Ralphael Stevens, who wrestled as a sophomore, so he has a little experience under his belt.

At 152 pounds, there is Mark Dove, a senior who works hard and is eager to learn the sport.

Ruben Torres, a very strong and aggressive freshman who shows great promise, will compete at 160 pounds.

At 171 pounds is Chuck Sanders, a sophomore, who is picking up the technique fast.

Tory McCuistion will wrestle at 184 pounds. McCuistion is a freshman who wrestled for coach Mike Cantwell at Grace Davis High School before his family moved to Riverbank.

At 215 pounds is sophomore Justin Mendonca, who is still figuring out what the sport is really about and working to slim down.

The heavyweight slot belongs to Zach Fisher, a 9th-grader who has good balance and a driving desire to compete at the top level.

"Zach has wrestled for me at Cardozo, and shown great improvement each year. I have no doubt he will continue to do so this season too," said Pief.