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MAT CLASSIC PREVIEW: Carpios hope to make history
The Carpio family is used to getting their arms raised following wrestling matches.
Actually, that's all senior Ares and freshman Arian have experienced this season for the Todd Beamer Titans. The brother-sister combination is a combined 56-0 during the 2011-12 and have won every conceivable tournament title during their stellar careers.
The 126-pound Ares Carpio is hoping to close out his stellar prep career for the Titans with another state championship. Ares Carpio won the 119-pound title during his sophomore season before finishing in third place as a junior. He also won an academic state championship in 2011 and will attend Arizona State University in the fall on a academic and wrestling scholarship.
Not to be outdone, the 106-pound Arian is looking to start her high school career with a bang by winning her first state title in her freshman year.
The Carpios would be the first-ever brother-sister combination to win individual state titles at the same Mat Classic.
As an eighth-grader, Arian became the first girl in Federal Way middle school history to win a district wrestling championship by beating all the boys in her division.
This season, Arian has put together an impressive 32-0 record and basically dominates every time she steps on the mat, including pins in the sub-regional and regional championship matches.
But the domination was expected. During the spring, Arian won the USA female national championship.
The Carpios lead a record-setting contingent of Federal Way school district wrestlers to Tacoma. In total, 26 wrestlers from the four Federal Way high schools will be vying for state championships at Mat Classic XXIV, which runs Friday and Saturday inside the Tacoma Dome.
Beamer leads the way with a total of 10 participants, including eight boys and two girls. Decatur qualified eight boys to the Class 3A tournament, Federal Way brings six (five girls, one boy) to Tacoma and Jefferson has two wrestlers at Mat Classic.
Besides the Carpio siblings, TJ's K.W. Williams might have the best shot at bringing home a gold medal Saturday night. The senior 195-pounder is 39-1 on the season and knows what it takes to make a run at the Mat Classic. Last year, Williams lost in the 189-pound championship match.
This season, Williams' only loss came to Curtis' Kadyn Del Toro, and the two seem to be headed for a clash in the finals.
Other regional champions who will be wrestling this weekend will be Federal Way heavyweight Jessy Leifi and Decatur's Kyle Gleed (heavyweight) and 126-pounder Nick Lindholm. Federal Way's Bianca Arizpe (20-2) won the regional title on the girls' side and is the top-ranked 112-pounder by washingtonwrestlingreport.com.
Other state qualifiers include from Beamer Jordan Rhodes (second place at regionals, 106 pounds), Brett Dykman (second, 113), Brian Dykman (third, 120), Aron Set-Heit (fourth, 138), Deshar House (second, 138), Lance Gibson (second, 152) and K.J. Skannal (fourth, 195).
Other Decatur state qualifiers include Trystan Dawson (third, 106), Brandon Zimmerman (fifth, 145), Nick Karis (second, 160), Rowland Gaydosh (second, 170), Spencer Smith (fourth, 182) and Justin Robison (fifth, 285). Jefferson's Michael Roybal (third, 113) will also wrestle in Tacoma.
On the girls' side, Federal Way's Kim Mored (100), Lalaine Castro (106), Axa Molina (second, 118) and Luaipou Lologo (145) qualified, as did Beamer 137-pounder Vanessa Dixon.
This weekend's state wrestling tournament marks the 24th time Washington has held the extravaganza at the Tacoma Dome. The Mat Classic will crown state champions in every classification in the state at one central location.
The idea began in the fall of 1988 and the inaugural Mat Classic was held in February of 1989. The event is truly the epicenter of the sport of wrestling in Washington, which features no collegiate programs.
Mat Classic I featured three classifications on 18 mats. Over 18,000 spectators watched the action, which was an increase from the combined 16,000 at the separate tournaments in 1988. The tournament expanded to 24 mats in 1998.
It features many characteristics not found at other individual state tournaments in high school sports. The March of Athletes, over 1,000 strong with wrestlers, officials and cheerleaders, is an emotional opening to the finals. Theres also a presentation of Hall of Fame inductees and Academic State Champions, adding to the atmosphere.