photo courtesy of AJ Grieves; MatFocus.com
The 2019 WCWA Championships are over and in the books. With such a large tournament there can be an awful lot to digest. Here are some interesting facts, numbers, trends, and general nuggets of information from the tournament that you can use to impress your friends.
***Be aware I am currently in the process of building up my own personal database of records from past WCWA championships. At this time I have records that go back to 2014. A few of these tidbits of information could go further back once I accumulate more info (in other words; next years will be much better)****
In no particular order….
There were six WCWA champions from California, Alleida Martinez (Selma), Gracie Figueroa (Sanger), Dom Parrish (Scotts Valley), Solin Piearcy (San Jose), Alex Glaude (West Sacramento), and Dymond Guilford (Lancaster). No other state had more than one. Last year, California had four.
Out of four returning champions, only Dom Parrish (Simon Fraser) was able to capture her second title. Andribeth Rivera (Campbellsville) was fourth at 130 lbs, Brittany Marshall (Wayland Baptist) was fifth at 170 lbs. Paige Baynes (Wayland Baptist) was disqualified and did not place.
Not only did Dom Parrish repeat as a national champion, but she also faced her same finals opponent from 2017-18; her teammate Alex Hedrick (Simon Fraser). These two also met in the California State finals during Parrish’s senior season (2015). On that occasion, Parrish won by injury default.
Four wrestlers finished their careers as four-time All-Americans:
Dom Parrish (Simon Fraser; 2019 – 1st, 2018 – 1st; 2017 – 2nd; 2016 – 3rd)
Koral Sugiyama (Campbellsville; 2019 – 4th; 2018 – 5th; 2017 – 3rd; 2016 – 7th)
Alexis Porter (McKendree; 2019 – 3rd; 2018 – 2nd; 2017 – 5th; 2016 – 4th)
Brittany Marshall (Wayland Baptist; 2019 – 5th; 2018 – 1st; 2017 – 4th; 2016 – 4th)
Eight wrestlers finisher their careers as three-time All-Americans (Only wrestlers that entered the tournament are mentioned):
Hiba Salem (Menlo; 2019 – 4th; 2017 – 4th; 2016 – 6th)
Cassidy Jasperson (Oklahoma City; 2019 – 4th; 2017 – 4th; 2016 – 4th)
Maggie Douma (Oklahoma City; 2019 – 4th; 2017 – 7th; 2016 – 2nd)
Iman Kazem (Menlo; 2019 – 2nd; 2017 – 4th; 2016 – 5th)
Hannah Gladden (Emmanuel; 2019 – 4th; 2017 – 6th; 2015 – 4th)
Kiera Gabaldon (Warner Pacific; 2019 – 2nd; 2017 – 3rd; 2016 – 4th)
Paige Baynes (Wayland Baptist; 2018 – 1st; 2017 – 2nd; 2016 – 6th)
Brandy Lowe (McKendree; 2018 – 3rd; 2017 – 3rd; 2015 – 2nd)
Simon Fraser has the longest current streak with a national champion. They have had at least one every year from 2016-19. 2016 – Mallory Velte, 2017 – Mallory Velte, Peyton Smith, 2018 – Abby Lloyd, Dom Parrish, Mallory Velte, 2019 – Dom Parrish.
King University had its streak of national champions broken. Previously, they have had at least one WCWA national champion in every season going back to 2010.
Seven of the ten WCWA champions were number one seeds. The other champions were two seed: Solin Piearcy (Menlo – 136 lbs), three seed: Dymond Guilford (Missouri Baptist – 170 lbs), and four seed: Destane Garrick (McKendree – 191 lbs).
Nine of the ten one seeds earned All-American honors (with Paige Baynes being the only who didn’t). Seven were champions, Nicole Joseph (King) was a runner-up, and Brittany Marshall (Wayland Baptist) was fifth.
All ten two seeds finished in the top eight; however, only four of them made the finals. Solin Piearcy (Menlo), McKayla Campbell (Campbellsville), Felicity Taylor (McKendree), and Brenda Reyna (McKendree).
Jayden Laurent became Lakeland’s first National Champion, as well as their first All-American. It was also in the first year of existence for the Lakeland program. Other schools with All-Americans in their first season were: Maria Reyes (Big Bend CC – 7th 109) and Sierra Brown Ton (Colorado Mesa – 8th 123). Abnelis Yambo (Brewton-Parker 8th at 136 lbs) was the first All-American in school history. Brewton-Parker has only been competing since the 2016-17 season.
The only unseeded wrestler in the finals was Kaylee Seabolt (Emmanuel) at 191 lbs. Kaylee made the finals by upsetting the sixth seed (Sara Aguilar – Menlo), the third seed (Brandy Lowe – McKendree), and the second seed (Serena Woldring – Simon Fraser). In each match, she was trailing at the time she won by fall.
Alex Glaude’s title at 155 lbs made her the first individual national champion in McKendree history. Two matches later, Destane Garrick joined the club, as well, winning at 191 lbs.
2018-19 saw three freshmen earn WCWA titles Alleida Martinez (Menlo), Gracie Figueroa (Menlo), and Jayden Laurent (Lakeland). In each of the last five years, no more than one freshman was able to win a championship.
This year there were high expectations for the freshman class and they delivered. 28 freshmen earned All-American honors, compared to 23 sophomores, 11 juniors, and 18 seniors. 2018’s freshman AA #’s were 23, 2017 had 13, 2016 had 20, 2015 saw 22, and 23 in 2014.
Each weight class had at least one freshman All-American. 191 had the most, with an astounding six of eight All-Americans being in their first season.
As one may expect, California led the way with 24 All-Americans. At least one California native got on the podium in each of the ten weight classes. 155 (Alex Glaude – West Sacramento, Iman Kazam – Tracy, Alyvia Fiske – Napa, Anna Naylor – San Jose, Myranda Velasquez – Los Banos) led the way with five of the eight All-Americans hailing from California.
Next in line for producing All-Americans was Texas who featured 13.
Keeping the state’s best at home…All three 2019 All-Americans from Georgia stayed home to wrestle for Emmanuel. Kasey Baynon (7th – 116), Kayla Marano (4th – 136), Kaylee Seabolt (2nd – 191).
King led the way with six freshmen All-Americans (Jaclyn McNichols – 101, Cheyenne Sisenstein – 123, Alyssa Aceval – 130, Ashlynn Ortega – 143, Ana Luciano – 143 and Nia Crosdale – 170). Emmanuel and Simon Fraser had three. Jamestown, McKendree, and Menlo both had two.
Mariah Harris (Campbellsville – 171) was the only third-place finisher that lost her first match. She proceeded to win six straight to claim third. Along the way, she avenged that opening round loss to Nia Crosdale (King) with a fall of her own.
Alleida Martinez (Menlo – 109), Abby Nette (Emmanuel – 130), Solin Piearcy (Menlo – 136), and Dymond Guilford (Missouri Baptist – 170) all won titles without going the distance in any match.
The finals at 116 featured two freshman Gracie Figueroa (Menlo) and Felicity Taylor (McKendree). Two freshmen have not met in the finals during the 2014-18 time period, which is where my current records run out.
Six of the ten champions competed on a world team in 2018 Dom Parrish (55 kg at U23’s), Abby Nette (59 kg at U23’s), Alex Glaude (68 kg at U23’s), Alleida Martinez (50 kg at JR’s), Jayden Laurent (65 kg at JR’s), and Dymond Guilford (76 kg at JR’s).
Hannah Gladden (Emmanuel) took fourth-place at 155. This was the third time that she earned All-American honors, all with different schools. In 2017, she was sixth at 155 for University of the Cumberlands, and in 2015 she was fourth at 143 for Campbellsville. If Paige Baynes would have gotten on the podium, she would have AA’ed for three different schools, as well.
Some of the most notable wrestlers that competed and did not place were Brandy Lowe (McKendree) who was a three-time AA, twice placing third and once making the finals. She went 2-2. Also, sophomore Alexia Foca (Campbellsville) was fourth last year and went 1-2.
Third-place McKendree led all teams with 10 All-Americans. Menlo and Simon Fraser both had nine.
McKendree was also the only school to feature three All-Americans in the same weight class, as they did this at 155 lbs with Alex Glaude (1st), Jasmine Bailey (6th), and Joye Levendusky (7th).
All-Americans that have a hometown outside of the 50 states are Alexia Seal (7th at 101 – Simon Fraser), Ciara McCrae (3rd at 109 – Simon Fraser), Sara Brinkac (7th at 143 – Simon Fraser) and Serena Woldring (3rd at 191 – Simon Fraser) who all hail from British Columbia in Canada. Yurie Yoneoka (6th at 116 – Providence) is from Tokyo, Japan, and Andribeth Rivera (4th at 130) is from Puerto Rico.
Macy Higa’s third-place finish is the highest in Eastern Oregon’s short history.
Emmanuel had four finalists which are the most that they have ever produced.
Jamestown had four All-Americans after having none in 2018 and one in 2017.
Kiera Gabaldon became the first finalist in school history for Warner Pacific. The highest placement by a Knights wrestler previously was when Gabaldon was third in 2017.
Although she finished her high school career with two state titles in California, Angelina Gomez (Emmanuel) is originally from Texas, as was her finals opponent Asia Ray (Wayland Baptist). The two met in the semifinals of the 2016 Texas 6A 95 lb State Championships. Gomez prevailed in that meeting by fall in 3:21.
One of the better Fargo brackets I could uncover came from 2015; the 123 lb class of the Junior division. It featured two 2019 WCWA National Champions Gracie Figueroa, who finished first, and Dominique Parrish, who was third. Figueroa had just completed her freshman year of high school, while Parrish had graduated. Other 2019 All-Americans in this weight class were Alyssa Aceval (King) and Tiana Jackson (Menlo). Coincidentally, all four are from California.
Feel free to shoot me an email if you have a fun fact that I may have overlooked!