The meat grinder that is the Flowing Wells Invitational is over and there were several lasting impressions.
There were some great matches throughout the weekend some of which we know we won’t see again this year like the semifinal battle between Mesa Mountain View’s Anthony Wokasch and Cibola’s Andres Gandara or the championship between Corona del Sol’s Marc Farina and Marcos de Niza’s Ryan Sondrup.
Wokasch and Farina came out on top in tight matches, but won’t have to worry about the next time because they are in different divisions than the guy they squeaked past.
Luckily that won’t be the case for all of the top matches that took place in Tucson over the weekend.
Here are the top five rematches we are looking for in sectionals and/or state.
1. Sunnyside’s Juaquin Olivas vs. Boulder Creek’s Cory Crooks.
Heading into the finals this battle at 132 was the one that was one of the most anticipated and it didn’t disappoint. If bracketing falls right, they should be on the opposite side of the bracket at state.
At Flowing Wells, it was 1-0 Olivas after two periods when Crooks escaped to tie it. Olivas got the takedown for the 3-1 lead and held on for 3-2 although Cooks was really close to the go-ahead takedown on two separate occasions.
These two were at the same weight last season, but never cross paths at state when Olivas won the 120-pound title and Crooks finished fourth.
That shouldn’t be the case this year. If so, stop watching all other matches and watch this one.
2. Mesa Mountain View’s Paden Mason vs. Desert Vista’s Alex Carrillo.
Mason won 7-4 for the 120-pound title and it was his third straight victory over Carrillo so it is clear Mason has the upper hand, but that doesn’t mean it can’t change.
Mason came in having lost four times on the season wrestling a more difficult schedule before handing Carrillo his first loss of the season.
Carrillo got the initial takedown, but Mason eventually took a 7-2 lead before Carrillo got a late reversal.
They are in different sectionals so any rematch will have to come in Prescott Valley.
3. Centennial’s Lewis Arendall vs. Marana’s Travis Howard.
Arendall came in with two losses on the season both coming to Davion Grey, Moon Valley’s Division III state champion, but was still wrestling well as the Division I defending champion at 220.
Then came Saturday and Howard controlled the match from the start on his way to a 5-1 in the championship match.
They are in separate sectionals so they won’t meet until state where Arendall pinned Howard in the semifinals last season.
“I gotta be working harder,” Arendall said. “These guys are coming for me. I have to step it up. I have to go back to using my technique.”
4. Crooks vs. Chandler’s Quincy Reece.
Crooks had another squeaker in the semifinals, this time coming out on top. Like the match with Olivas, it was scoreless after one, but Crooks got two near fall points in the second and it was 2-1 after two.
Crooks escaped to start the third, but Reece tied with the only takedown of the match. Crooks escaped right away and finished with the 4-3 win to advance to the finals.
If they both end up on the opposite side of Olivas it will be battle to see who gets the chance to knock off the defending champion.
5. Sunnyside’s Roman Bravo-Young vs. Chandler’s Jason Holmes.
Ok, so this wasn’t exactly an enthralling match as Bravo-Young, ranked No. 2 in the nation, dominated the 106-pound title match 14-3.
But it was Holmes taking the shots, forcing the action early on. He was just too small to finish against Bravo-Young, who is a big 106-pounder.
It just showed that Holmes is ready to mix it up if another matchup comes together.
So if there was anyone that could push Bravo-Young it would be Holmes, one of the few competitors who went a full six minutes against the freshman Blue Devil.