Like many a gambler in Sin City has learned (or not) over the years, betting against a stacked house rarely yields big dividends. The New Mexico Highlands wrestling team found that out in the weekend’s Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational, a tournament loaded with many of the nation’s premier collegiate talent.
Highlands managed no team points in the 42-team tournament over the weekend at Star of the Desert Arena in Primm, Nev.
Ohio State, a power in NCAA Division I wrestling, edged Cornell 122.5 to 121.5 for the team championship. D-I programs Oklahoma, Boise State and Nebraska rounded out the top five.
• Seth Chavez (125) lost via pin, 2:21, to No. 2 seed and eventual runner-up Anthony Robles of Arizona State; lost 17-0 to Mat Fields of Purdue.
• Donovan Troup (133) lost 13-5 to Daryl Thomas of Illinois; lost to Ian Paddock of Ohio State via pin, 1:53.
• Daniel Perales (141) lost 23-7 to No. 1 seed and eventual champion Reece Humphrey of Ohio State; lost 16-0 to Chase Smith of Wyoming.
• Trey Saxon (149) lost via pin, 1:49, to No. 2 seed and eventual runner-up Lance Palmer of Ohio State; lost 15-10 to Dave Christian of California Polytechnic.
• Nick Sanchez (157) lost 13-4 to Ryan Konz of Indiana; lost via default to Matt Dunn of Columbia.
• Jarrod Purvis (165) lost 6-2 to Alex Rinaldi of Drexel; lost via pin, 4:04, to Joseph Stafford of Air Force.
• Andrew Roden (174) lost via pin, 6:40, to No. 10 seed and eventual seventh-place finisher David Rella of Ohio State; lost via pin, 2:17, to Ryan DesRoches of Cal Poly.
• Mark Martinez (184) lost via pin, 1:14, to eventual sixth-place finisher Matt Ryan of West Virginia; lost via pin, 6:12, to Stephan Hampton of California-Davis.
• Jesse Boggs (285) lost via pin, :33, to Eloheim Palma, of North Carolina State; lost 5-3 to Jim Powers of Cal Poly.
RMAC schools San Francisco State (32nd place, 15 team points), Western State (32nd, 15) and Colorado State-Pueblo (40th, five) also competed in the Las Vegas Invite.
• • •
Before competing in the Las Vegas Invite, Highlands and coach Doug Moses took on RMAC rival CSU-Pueblo in a dual meet at a neutral site in Primm, with the Thunderwolves taking a 34-12 victory.
Chavez, Saxon and Sanchez scored wins for the Cowboys. Chavez won by forfeit. Saxon defeated Levi Jutila 8-5. And Sanchez, a former Belen standout, edged Louie DeSantis 4-3.