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Bulldogs batter Falcons on the mat in league opener
Turlok wrestling B1
Turlocks Isaac Perez hits a reversal against his Falcon opponent before scoring a pin in the final minute of the third period on Wednesday. - photo by BY FRANKIE TOVAR/Turlock Journal

Turlock High signaled the beginning of Central California Conference competition with a lopsided 68-12 defeat of Atwater High in the opening league dual of the season Wednesday night. The Bulldogs rode seven pins, a pair of forfeits, a pair of tech falls, and one major decision to victory as they downed the Falcons and positioned themselves alongside rival Pitman High atop the CCC standings.

“We expect to win. I only recognized one of their kids from last year, so I knew they were inexperienced, but we’re inexperienced, too,” head coach Mike Contreras said. “We’ll pat ourselves for a second, but it’s back to work.”

Turlock scored 57 unanswered team points before suffering its first loss via pin in the eight match of the night. Turlock would give up one more pin before the night was through as Atwater’s best wrestler, JoJo Ochoa, pinned Juan Coronado, but by then victory had already been secured by the Bulldogs.

Dustin Lema, Brady Egleston, Fabian Gaona, Isaac Bertalotto, Albino Orozco, Isaac Perez, and Albert Gonzalez recorded pins against their opponents while Rafael Herrera and Alex Gutierrez notched technical falls and Nick Gutierrez nabbed a major decision.

“It’s great, but it’s going to get tougher from here. I’m proud of our guys and I’m happy we got an easy dual first,” Contreras said.

Turlock will now continue its quest for a league championship on Wednesday in another home dual meet against a strong yet underrated Merced High team.

“Merced’s no slouch, so next week is not going to be easy by any means,” Contreras said.