Three Martinez victories and one from freshman Miguel Padilla paved the way for Santa Fe High’s wrestlers to finish first in Saturday’s annual Jaguar Invitational at Capital High
Sam Martinez and the Martinez brothers, Elijah and Isaiah, joined with Padilla to emerge victorious, with Jasper Mares and Ryan Romero Capital’s winners
By ARNIE LESHIN, Santa Fe Today
The Martinez brothers, Elijah and Isaiah, Sammy Martinez, who is not related, and Miguel Padilla, shared the spotlight for Santa Fe High as it finished first Saturday in the annual Jaguar Wresting Invitational at Capital High.
Must start with Sammy, a junior and the defending state 6A champion at the 132-pound weight, while concluding at 41-8. As a freshman, he placed fourth at state. And he hasn’t slowed down, winning Saturday at 145 via a pin in 53 second over Elias Ortiz of Foothill.
And Demons’ head coach Stephen Burns, now in his fourth year, continues his praise for Sammy.
“He shows up every day for practice, has a good work ethic, is a great leader, and has a great attitude,” Burns said, “and good grades.”
This is Sammy’s third year on the team, and the only sport he competes in.
Isaiah Martinez is a senior who pinned Capital senior Lucas McNatt in 1:50 in the 170 weight, and the veteran of the squad. He put together a 42-7 record after taking second at 152 last year.
Not so for brother Elijah, only an 8th grader, and victorious at 138 by pinning Zac Batie of Moriarty in 5:56.
“That is a rarity,” Burns said, “8th graders don’t usually win tournaments, but for Elijah, it wasn’t a problem.”
Then there’s Padilla, a freshman, and he, too, came away with a first place in the 129 weight by taking a 6-0 decision over sophomore Andrew Trujillo of Robertson, last year’s state champion at 106, and in the semis pinned senior and two-time state champion Ryan Romero of Capital in the second round of the 129 weight.
“That was impressive,” Burns said, “to defeat two state champions back-to-back.”
Santa Fe High totaled 243 points against the field of 17 schools. Second with 201.5 was Los Lunas, and host Capital placed third with 143.5.
Demons’ junior Adam Pena, who came in fifth in the 120 at state, is currently recovering from injuries. He went 24-8 last season.
The Jags had two winners, defending state 120 champion Jasper Mares, a sophomore, and sophomore Jonathan Romero, who was runner-up at state.
Mares, now at 132 pounds, took a 7-0 decision over Juan Aragon of Los Lunas. Romero won on a pin over Issac Salazar of Los Lunas at 113.
Capital also received a second place from junior Manuel Carrillo at 220 pounds, and the Demons had runners-up in junior Juan Lovato at 152, and junior Isaiah Vargas at 160.
Santa Fe High departs Thursday morning for a tournament in Grand Junction, Colo., about 250 miles west of Denver. Burns intends to take a dozen grapplers for the three-day meet that includes an 8-hour trip.
“The kids always look forward to this,” Burns said. “It’s a great experience, an adventure.”