The Stockton Report

Bloged in News and Information by John Rizzuti Monday February 19, 2007

UIL Girls State – 2007

by Mike Stockton

Here we go again. Another great year in women’s wrestling in Texas! This might be the best state championship ever. This is, by far, the best senior class in history with names like Brooks, Epps, Clark, Wood, Lowe, Underwood, Kurt, McClendon, and Alvarado. I could go on and on and on.

But then you have the young ones knocking at their door –juniors Tessa Plana and Angie Murray, sophomores Courtney Lindley and Kirsten Strickler and freshman phenom Trisha Jenkins. Women’s wrestling gets better and better each year in this state.

Now to the business at hand; last year I named 7 out of 10 champions and had 16 of the 20 finalists. This year I might miss some of them because it is so tight in several weight classes. But, I will lay money that I don’t miss many. Plus I will name the team champions as well – can Caprock continue its dominance?

95 pounds – This has some tough young ladies competing, but no one will touch reigning State Champion Lene Wood from Frisco Centennial. She hasn’t given up a takedown this season and won’t be stopped here. Jennifer Gonzalez from PSJA Memorial will finish 2nd, Heather Mandhardt from Katy Taylor 3rd and Jenny Garza from Rio Grande City will finish 4th. The best early match-up will be Garza and Palo Duro’s Plasencio in round 2. If Garza stops the deadly Palo Duro headlock, she keeps moving.

102 pounds – Five girls can win this weight class and I wouldn’t be shocked with any of them. But you want to know who will win and that is Lady Blue Montoya from El Paso Chapin. She will avenge her one loss on the year to Lisa Martinez from Caprock at the regional finals and win it all.

Martinez will finish 2nd, LBJ’s Helen Timmons 3rd, and Arlington’s Crystal Grajeda finishes 4th. Don’t forget about Cy Ridge’s Jessica Nguyen, Montwood’s Nicole Silva Southlake Carroll’s Jordan West, or Rio Grande’s Krystal Montalvo. Best match ups will be Timmons/Silva and Montoya/Grajeda in the quarterfinals.

110 pounds – Remember at 103, I said five could win it; well here you have nine with a shot. Let the discussions begin because two-time defending champion Awbrey Lowe will leave Austin not with gold, but with a bronze this year.
We will see a rematch of another regional final in this one with T.J. Cannon from Arlington Bowie taking on Emily Martin from Frisco Centennial. It was a great match at the Texas Ladies Classic, it was a great final at regional, and it will be a fantastic final at the State Tournament.

Lowe will beat Suzanne Baker from Arlington Lamar in the consolation finals. That leaves undefeated Jenny Torres from Shoemaker, Nancy Rodriguez from Crockett, and Brynn Suttles who each have only lost to Torres – not placing. Best early match-up will be Martin/Torres and Lowe/Baker in the quarterfinals.

119 pounds – This one is a little easier than the last two. Cy Fair’s Angie Murray will complete the first half of the brother/sister sweep in the afternoon and we will see if Michael can do his part later it in the evening. The winner of the Strickler and Maylene Garcia from Corpus Christi Ray semi will finish 2nd and the other 3rd. I am picking Strickler to win.

Mia Mickelson from Arlington Lamar will finish 4th. That leaves Lisa Gutierrez from Del Valle, Jennifer Williams from Caprock, and The Woodlands Avery Eshenroder on the outside looking in. Best match-up will be Strickler/Gutierrez in the quarters.

128 pounds – The Judo Master Coppell’s Tessa Plana will dominate this weight. She finished 4th in the nation last year but will finish number-one in the state Saturday afternoon. Ashley Underwood from Amarillo River Road will be second, Stephanie Han from EP Irvin third, and Anna Campos will finish fourth. Don’t forget about Arlington’s Amy Stephens or Wagner’s Marissa De La Garza – they’ll be in the hunt as well. Best match-up early will be Han/De La Garza.

138 pounds – Finally I get a couple of easy picks for champion. Defending Champion and self-titled “Headlock Queen” Vanessa Epps from Frisco will repeat. She has over 130 wins including 110 pins and she wants to finish with 4 more.

Her best match will be against Daffney Barbosa from Caprock whose only loss was to Epps by the score of 8-4 at the Texas Ladies Classic. Epps’ only 3-round match in two years! Barbosa will finish 3rd since she sees Epps in the semi’s. Whitney Disotelle from Waller will finish 2nd and Andriena Moore from Shoemaker will finish 4th.
Look out for Katy Brown from A&M and Hereford’s Allison Medina. Best match-up will be Epps/Brown in the quarterfinals.

148 pounds – This is another easy one. Lindsey Brooks makes it three state titles in a row! She is the all time winningest wrestler in Texas state history. With four more matches to end her Texas career she’ll move on to bigger and brighter things.

Francis Efiong from Arlington Lamar might be accepting of the torch when she finishes 2nd, Kirsten Iruegas from Hereford 3rd and Brittney Meyer from Cy Falls (who has only loss to Brooks) finishes 4th. Best match-up will be Efiong and Meyer in the ¼ finals. Look out for Pflugerville Zinna Anyanwuh; she will make some noise, too.

165 pounds –Back to another difficult weight-class prediction right here. You have three undefeated girls in this weight class. You have two returning state runner-ups, plus two others who have only one loss to one of the undefeated girls.

Can we make my life hard doing this? I think some wrestlers avoided Lindsey Brooks at 148 this year, but life is still tough. Let’s start with the finals: Katy Taylor’s Adele Kurt and Caprock’s Maci Alvarado with Alvarado winning a tight match. Arlington Sequin’s Erica McClendon, who lost a controversial final last year will lose to Alvarado in the quarterfinals but come back and finish 3rd and Ellison’s Keyetta Brown will finish 4th.

Look out though for Katie Brackin from LBJ, Cedar Park’s Jaime Moore and Katy’s Alana Jimenez. Best early match-up easily McClendon/Alvarado in the quarters. This could have been a final.

185 pounds – Three undefeated girls again!!!! Carrie Clark from Vista Ridge will end her career with a repeat performance. Venus Barron from Katy Taylor will beat Keller Central freshman phenom Trisha Jenkins in the semi’s and get 2nd. Jenkins will finish 3rd and Jaleesa Stell from Palo Duro will end up 4th. Josie Garcia from Beeville Jones and Claudia Pena from PSJA will be in the fight but the top three are the best by far. Early match-up of Pena/Barron will be mighty good.

215 pounds – We finish with the big ladies but another not easy to handicap weight class. Cassie Rangel from PSJA Memorial will defeat “Tiny” Amanda Athon from Arlington in the finals.

Estrella Cabrera from Klein Collins will finish 3rd and Karon Scott from Austin LBJ will score points at 4th. Deicy Cervantes from Socorro and Demetria Brown from Kimball will be tough to beat as well. Scott and Athon in the quarterfinals will be the best early match-up by far.

Best Five after the State
1. Lindsey Brooks – Klein – 3 Time Champion, All time wins – The total package
2. Vanessa Epps – Frisco – 2 Time Champion, 3 time finalist, The lean, mean pinning machine
3. Angie Murray – Cy Fair – She will be a 2-time champion and 3 time finalist after next year. Makes history as her brother wins state too!
4. Emily Martin – Frisco Centennial – One of the best in the state on her feet!
5. Carrie Clark – Vista Ridge – The most powerful double leg in the State!

Who wins it all? Caprock again!!!!!!! After plugging in the computer, Katy Taylor will be 2nd, then Frisco, Arlington Lamar, PSJA Memorial, Arlington, Frisco Centennial, Cy Fair. Now all this includes prediction of bonus points.

We will see what really happens starting Friday morning!!!

Thanks for reading!

Mike Stockton

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