Two Palm Desert wrestlers win individual state title, Aztecs place 4th as a team

Palm Desert Wrestling, a local flagship program, represented the Valley in major fashion over the weekend in Bakersfield at the CIF State Championships.

PD produced two individual champions and finished 4th overall as a team.

Sophomore stars Brock Mantanona (126) and Daniel Herrera (285) both won their respective weight division via pins.

Mantanona and Herrera became the first Aztecs to win an individual state title since Anthony Mantanona in 2017.

PD’s top grappler Beau Mantanona was arguably just short of the top spot on the podium. There was clear controversy at the end of his league game.

In short, the referee awarded Beau two points, but then stripped those points “after” the match was over, ultimately meaning Beau had lost the match and the state championship.

Despite the devastating loss, Beau showed his true championship spirit and class through a post on his Instagram.

Beau’s unfortunate loss garnered a lot of attention on social media over the weekend, including from Daniel Cormier, one of the most accomplished wrestlers and mixed martial artists of all time.

As with the other Palm Desert wrestlers, Sonny Kling finished 2nd and Erick McCown 5th, both in their respective weight classes.

Also for the Aztecs was Tegan Nguyen. She made history by becoming the first female wrestler from Palm Desert to rank stateside, finishing 8th.

Cathedral City also had a representation in Bakersfield. Isaiah Morales and Hector Haro placed 4th and 6th respectively.

They both made history by becoming the first-ever Lions to place in the state tournament.

Congratulations to all of our local wrestlers for a successful season! Be sure to stick with KESQ News Channel 3 for ongoing high school sports coverage.

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