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Wrestlers wrap up season, look to build on success
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Lady Bruin Antoinette Wilkerson is shown here in a home meet, on the mats for the Riverbank wrestling team, which had a girls squad this season in addition to the boys. Ric McGinnis/The News

The season for Riverbank wrestlers has come to a conclusion and head coach Khrystian Daniel said he was pleased overall with what he saw, both with the boys and girls taking to the mats for the Bruins.

“The girls fought so hard this season, they never backed down from a challenge, even in our dual against Hughson,” explained Daniel. “They (Hughson) had no female wrestlers and our girls stepped up and wrestled against the guys in their weight class. No matter the injury these girls shook it off and got back on the mat and set the standard this year as our first female team.”

Meanwhile, what the Bruin boys lacked in experience, they made up for in hard work.

“The boys had a great season as well, all but two were first year wrestlers and they all proved themselves on the mat,” Daniel said. “Our 215-pounder, Gabe Sandoval, came in as a freshman, no wrestling background, took home a medal in almost every tournament and put in the work with dual meets as well.”

The coach pointed to Sandoval as “one of our up-and-coming prospects that has the potential to go far” in the sport.

With the school season now done, Daniel said they are starting up an off-season wrestling club for Freestyle/Greco wrestling to introduce younger students to the sport.

“That way the younger ages can learn since there’s no middle school team and my high schoolers will help coach to establish leadership skills for themselves,” Daniel added.