ELK GROVE — Two periods into the final match of the Division I North Sub-Sections meet last weekend at Franklin, Davis High wrestler Andrew Olivas found himself trailing by a point.
Showing a determination that has defined the underdog Blue Devils all season long, Olivas scored an escape in the third round, then defeated Pleasant Grove’s Brandon O’Donnell in overtime, 5-3. The victory gave Olivas a seventh-place finish at 137 pounds, and made him the fourth DHS wrestler to qualify for Friday’s Masters meet in Stockton.
Olivas, who missed most of the season with an injury and has been brilliant since returning to the mat, will be joined by Devil seniors Philip Toy and Blair Kittle, and sophomore Andy Schmidl. According to Davis coach Ty Brown, “Olivas as one who may surprise at Masters.”
Toy had the highest finish of any Blue Devil, going 4-2 to take fourth at 114 pounds. The pivotal match came against Lyle Suza of Sheldon, who was second at 114 last year. Down 3-0 in the first period, Toy used the second round to tie the score. Then, working from the down position to start the final period, the DHS grappler scored an escape to win 4-3.
Kittle (173 pounds) and Schmidl (132), the only Devil underclassman this season and the only sophomore in Brown’s tenure to advance to the Masters meet, each placed eighth. Needing a victory to advance, Kittle faced Freddy Lopez of powerhouse Elk Grove. The Devil senior finished an exciting match with a pin to post an upset victory.
“It feels good to beat (Elk Grove) … for once we sent one of the wrestlers home for the postseason,” Brown said. “Blair’s just over a year past (an) ACL injury, he’s getting his groove and … this is big for him.”
Junior Scott Derby, freshman Adrian LoBuono-Gonzalez, and senior Navid Fani all wrestled well at the North Section meet, but did not advance.
At the Masters meet, Toy’s first match will be against Jobel Cabigting from Jesse Bethal, Olivas will face Peter Santos from WDC, Schmidl bouts Andrew Perez from Pittsburg and Kittle squares off against Yevgeniy Isayev from Cordova.