Cal State Bakersfield wrestling’s “Feud on the Field” lived up to all the hype the program and the school put around it. CSUB edged Fresno State, 18-12, winning the final three matches in dramatic fashion on the Main Soccer Field at CSUB on Saturday afternoon. Fresno State received votes in the most recent coaches poll.
“If you were here sitting in those bleachers and you didn’t get excited and it doesn’t make you want to come watch more wrestling, I don’t know what will,” CSUB head coach Manny Rivera said.
Needing a win to lock up the dual victory, the Roadrunners had 141-pounder and Bakersfield High alumnus Carlos Herrera left. Herrera trailed Fresno State’s Christopher Deloza in the second period before getting a late takedown to take the lead. He limped back into position and still managed to earn two more takedowns in the final period for the 15-11 win.
“He’s not 100 percent healthy,” Rivera said. “He was in tough spots, but he dug deep. He showed a lot of heart. … That match kind of game me heart attack almost, but he pulled it off there at the end.”
One match prior, CSUB senior Sean Nickell (133 pounds) slipped past the Bulldogs’ Gary Joint with a 3-2 decision. Nickell’s first period takedown and second-period escape were just enough.
CSUB freshman Eddie Flores beat Fresno State’s Robert Garcia IV in the 125-pound match that started the string of wins the propelled the Roadrunners to victory. Flores won a 9-8 decision on a takedown with fewer than 20 seconds left. It was the first win of his career.
“It was awesome, especially in this environment,” Flores said. “I couldn’t ask for a better situation, better outcome.”