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Foothill lands in playoffs with Placer’s win over Lincoln

Eslinger on her way to state
By: Jim Linsdau News Messenger Sports Editor
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The Lincoln High wrestling team came up one match short in a mathematical tie-breaker that allowed Foothill to claim second in the Pioneer Valley League and get the invite to the Sac-Joaquin Section Playoffs. Bear River took the PVL title and will also be in the playoffs. However, wrestling is not done as the league meet is scheduled for Friday at Foothill to determine qualifiers for individual advancement. And Lincoln’s Gabrielle Eslinger will move onto the California Interscholastic Federation Girls State Meet after placing second in the Girls Section Masters in the 108-pound class, Feb. 3-4. “I was ranked first in state in the off season because I got second last year and the girl that beat me at state was a senior and graduated,” said Eslinger, a junior. “So, if I keep working hard and don’t get too over confident I should win it.” Eslinger has been nursing a leg injury, but feels that shouldn’t hold her back. She said it didn’t bother her that much at Masters but after wrestling she does feel some soreness. Eslinger also plays soccer and is a cheerleader. Also wrestling at Masters were Emily Solozano, Nicolette Lipman and Shye Mosier. Lipman, Mosier and Eslinger all made it to the second round of the tournament. Placer _ It appeared the Fighting Zebras would wrestle their way into the playoffs after picking up 18 points in the first three matches of their league dual meet, but the Hillmen rallied for a 39-28 victory last week. Sam Brasher and Juan Ramirez both had pins in the 106-pound and 120-pound classes respectively, and Eslinger earned a forfeit at 113. A forfeit carries the same team points as does a pin. “That was the plan. The plan was score a lot of points early and see if we could pull through, but it didn’t work out,” said Brasher following the meet. “I just moved as quickly as I could,” Brasher added as to what led to his pin of Placer’s Anthony Wong. Both Brasher and Ramirez are freshmen. It was also senior night during the dual meet with Marcus Gillett, Joe Moran, James Sheridan and Drew Suchomel being recognized along with their parents. The Zebras could have a lot of returning lettermen next year. Placer head coach Don Packheiser said he knew Lincoln would be a tough match. His club had some injuries and illnesses forcing him to fill some spots with underclassmen. He said that last year the Zebras came to Auburn and took the title from the Hillmen. “You guys are going to have to give all you got and wrestle with your heart,” said Plackheiser as to what he told his grapplers before their final league dual meet. “I knew (Lincoln) would be ready for us.” But not ready enough; the Hillmen took four of the next five matches, including a pin at the 170-pound class, and began to pull away. Placer picked up two forfeits at 195 and 220 pounds. “They were just a little better than us tonight,” said Lincoln head coach Mike Maul. “There might have been a couple matches where we could have sneaked by with either wins or not get pinned, but nothing that I look at where we blew it.” The loss put Lincoln in a virtual tie for second place with both Placer and Foothill. After Maul went over the numbers to determine the tie-breaker the Mustangs emerged with the No. 2 spot and the playoff berth. PLACER 39, LINCOLN 28 Weight 106 (L) Sam Brasher def (P) Anthony Wong pin 113 (L) Gabrielle Eslinger forfeit 120 (L) Juan Ramirez def (P) Wyatt Bankus pin 126 (P) Justin Mason def (L) Evan Deathrage 11-5 132 (P) Gamaliel Gomez def (P) Landon Croisant pin 138 (P) Jacob Limon def (L) Jake Palmyra 9-7 145 (P) Hayden Mills def (L) Tye Karsikas 10-7 152 (L) Ero Wainio def (P) William Thorton 9-1 160 (P) Brendon Packheiser def (L) Marcus Gillett 12-11 170 (P) Mason Lenover def (L) Alex Shima pin 182 (P) Brendan Rinaldo def (L) JD Edwards 16-10 195 (P) Ryan Talley forfeit 220 (P) Luis Medina forfeit No heavyweights