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Lincoln wrestlers advance to the next level

Eslinger at state; Wainio at masters
By: Jim Linsdau/News Messenger Sports Editor
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Lincoln High wrestlers Gabrielle Eslinger and Ero Wainio have put themselves at the pinnacle of their sport and will both compete this weekend. Eslinger, a junior, advances to the CIF Girls State Championships to be held this Friday and Saturday at Lemoore High School. Lemoore is located in Kings County about seven miles from Hanford. “Gabrielle’s bracket this year is a tad tougher than last year,” said Lincoln wrestling head coach Mike Maul. Eslinger finished second at state last year. “This will be a real good challenge for her,” Maul added. Wrestling at 106 pounds, Maul said Eslinger was healthy in spite of a leg injury she had been nursing. Maul said Eslinger has a good chance of earning a medal at state. Wainio, also a junior, heads for the Stockton Arena for the Sac-Joaquin Section Masters this Thursday and Friday. Wainio was one of seven to advance out of the CIF Division III Championships held in Benicia this past week. “Looking at his bracket, he’s got a path,” Maul said of Wainio’s chances of moving onto the CIF State Championships to be held at the Rabobank Arena in Bakersfield, March 2-3. “There’s no easy road to state. He holds his own destiny.” Maul said the state rates each CIF section and each division in that section. Wainio would have to place in the top four to qualify for state at masters. Wainio wrestles at the 152-pound weight level.