State Wrestling Championships 2019

17 Years, 16 State Championships
Posted on 02/26/2019

Rams hoist blue state wrestling trophyIt may be the longest streak in New Mexico sports.  The City of Vision owns state big-school wrestling.   And this year is no exception. 

The Rio Rancho Rams hoisted the blue trophy as repeat state team champions in 5A wrestling, narrowly taking down the rival Cleveland Storm, 170 points to 163.  The Carlsbad Cavemen settled for third. 

The Storms Tristan Masacarenas hoists the Rams Tim Lopez during the 113-pound matchThe Rams took home the title, but it was the Storm wrestlers who dominated in the final rounds and made a contest of it.  Five Storm grapplers competed in the final round and three won individual championships.  Heavyweight Austin Roman pinned all of his opponents throughout the tournament to dominate the 285-pound class.  Dion Hunter (bottom photo) was equally dominant in the 220-pound class, pinning everyone he wrestled.  And on the other end of the weight scale, at 113 pounds, Tristan Mascarenas repeated as state champion, decisioning Rio Rancho’s Tim Lopez, who was last year’s 106-pound victor (photo above right).  It’s the ninth individual state title in the Mascarenas family – brothers Mikey and Paul both won multiple state titles. 

The Rams had four wrestlers make the finals, but only one was able to prevail: senior James Emmer, with a decisive win at 138 pounds.  That one individual victory, though, was enough to clinch the team state title, as the Rams depth at all weights carried the day. 

The Storm's Dion Hunter pins his opponent in the 220-lb matchThe Rio Rancho schools have dominated the large school classes in state wrestling since 2003.  Between them, Rio Rancho and Cleveland own every state title save 2006, and since Cleveland High opened in 2009 have traded the title back and forth several times.  The Storm last took state in 2017, and have been state runners-up the past two years.