By RAUL GARCIA
ELSA — It was a full day of pain at the Twin City Invitational wrestling tournament as 20 teams tussled on the mat and went toe-to-toe with their opponents Saturday.
“All pain goes away when victory is with you,” Edcouch-Elsa’s Ross Uresti said.
Heading into the championship matches, Uresti and his Yellow Jackets teammates were represented in five weight classes on their way to a team victory.
Edcouch-Elsa won the team portion of the tournament with 231points. Los Fresnos followed in second with 183 points. Sharyland High finished third with 147 points. La Joya High placed fourth with 118 points and Weslaco High came in fifth with 116 points.
“We planned to protect our home turf and take back the wrestling championship trophy to our wrestling room,” Uresti said. “We always go for the gold.”
The event began at 9 a.m. and lasted until 8 p.m.
Two wrestlers who got it on once more were PSJA Memorial’s Abel Alvarado and Edcouch-Elsa’s Mario Treviño in the 113-pound weight class championship. Alvarado bested Treviño for the second time in two weeks. They met in the Sharyland Rattler tournament championship Dec. 7.
“I’m proud of the way the kids are wrestling,” Edcouch-Elsa head coach Sam Mangum said. “I know it’s a hyped tournament and I don’t want to make an easy tournament for the kids. I want them to work because we have to get them ready for the next level which is districts, regionals and state. I feel a tournament this deep and this weight gave them the feel of how tough the competition is going to be up in Austin and Houston.”
Donna High, Donna North, Edcouch-Elsa, Edinburg North, Grulla, La Joya High, La Joya Juarez-Lincoln, La Joya Palmview, Los Fresnos, McAllen High, Mission High, PSJA Memorial, PSJA North, PSJA Southwest, Rio Grande City, Roma, San Benito, Sharyland High, Valley and Weslaco High participated in the tournament.
Mission High’s heavyweight junior Dante Lopez also dominated his competition at the 285-pound division all the way through the championship, and stretched his undefeated mark to 10-0.
“The Twin City Invitational is one of those that challenge you,” Lopez said. “You are here all day, you are wrestling all day and you just have to go and compete, especially in these kinds of matches with so many competitors.”
In the girls tournament, the Edinburg North Cougars won the portion of the tournament with 102 points. San Benito came in second with 83 points and Donna High and La Joya High tied for third with 79 points.
Edinburg North’s Eva Cerda improved to 17-1 on the year with a fall at the 2-minute, 16-second mark over Valley View’s Dafne Aguilar-Martinez (14-3) while North’s Stephanie Garza upped her record to 15-2 with a fall over Donna High’s Emily Fernandez (3-1) in 1:26.