Wrestlers open with three victories


April 28, 2021

The Tucumcari wrestling team opened its season belatedly Thursday but with a big triumph — three dual-meet victories over district opponents.

The Rattlers defeated St. Michael’s 36-24, downed Newcomb 42-30 and defeated Pecos 42-15.

Tucumcari coach Eddie Encinias wasn’t completely satisfied, though.

“We did all right,” he said. “My expectations are a lot more than a lot of people’s. We’ve got a lot of improvement to do. I think we can be a lot better than we are. We have to get guys into different weight classes.”

Encinias was reluctant to single anyone out for the victories but gave praise to sophomore Xzander Garcia.

“For someone wrestling outside of his weight class, he looked really strong,” Encinias said. “I didn’t expect that much out of him this year, but he put a lot of offseason work in the weight room.”

Dadrian Ysco also scored crucial wins in the 126-pound weight class for Tucumcari.

“A lot of our younger guys showed a lot of potential,” he added.

The Rattlers began their season about a week later than expected. The previous Thursday, the New Mexico Activities Association announced a suspension of wrestling because of COVID-19 concerns about the time Tucumcari’s squad was about to depart for its season-opening meet. The NMAA reinstated the sport a few hours later.

The Rattlers lost one significant grappler. Senior Colt Garcia, who was Tucumcari’s top athlete in the state tournament last season with a third-place finish at 171 pounds in Class 3A, left the team.

Tucumcari will travel Friday to Santa Fe for non-district dual matches against Moriarty and Tierra Encantada.


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