Perez captures wrestling crown
One of the best matches in the final round of the Texas state high school wrestling tournament came in the Class 5A Girls’ 138-pound weight class.
Uvalde High School’s Adelyhda “Lala” Perez recorded a 2-0 decision victory over Frisco Liberty’s Ashley Cook last Saturday.
“It was a greatly executed match,” said Uvalde High School head wrestling coach Nick Hernandez. “It was the final match of the state tournament. We began with the 16 top wrestlers in the state. All the matches are tough. You can’t overlook anyone.”
This was the second year in a row for Perez and Cook to meet up in the state finals.
In 2018, Perez bested Cook in the championship match of the Class 5A Girls’ 148-pound weight division. Perez won that match by a 7-3 decision.
“I was not concerned that Lala would be facing the same person she wrestled in 2018. I’ve seen Lala’s preparation all year. She is the hardest worker in the room. She gives her all with every practice, every rep, and every technique,” said Hernandez. “She put 15 years of work into the sport and at such a young age, it speaks volumes to her dedication. She’s an amazing athlete and leader.”
Perez blew away her competition in the semi-finals as she posted a 10-0 major decision win over Mikayla Hodnett of A&M Consolidated.
Prior to the semi-final win, Perez needed only 12 seconds to win her opening-round match over Molly Ashcraft of Richmond Foster.
Perez downed Seguin’s Armani Barnes by pin at the 1:31 mark of the first round of the state second-round match.
After losing to Perez, both Hodnett and Barnes came back through the consolation bracket to battle for third place. Hodnett topped Barnes by pin at the 2:50 mark of the first round.
With her four state tournament match victories this past weekend, Perez finished her season with an overall record of 34-2.
The UHS senior did not lose a district, regional, or state match.
In four years of high school wrestling competition, Perez totaled an amazing wrestling record of 152 match victories and only six losses.
She claimed two state Class 5A Girls’ 148-pound division championships, with wins her freshman and junior years.
As a sophomore, she finished second in the state Class 5A Girls’ 148-pound weight division competition.
She lost a narrow 1-0 decision to A&M Consolidated’s Za’Maia Marshall in the 2017 title match.
That season, Perez lost three matches, including the state title match.
Other state qualifiers
Two other Uvaldeans, sophomore Reynaldo Perez and freshman Dominique Quiroz, competed in the state wrestling tournament last weekend at Cypress.
Perez won two matches and lost two matches wrestling in the Class 5A Boys’ 120-pound weight class.
He won his opening match with a 7-1 decision over Houston Northside’s Agustin Ramirez.
Perez then lost a 13-6 decision to Andres Mendoza of Canyon Randall in the second round.
Randall advanced to the finals, but lost a 9-5 decision to Mason Purvis of El Paso Chapin in the state title match.
Perez posted a 7-0 decision win over Jeyden Castillo of Colleyville Heritage in his first consolation-bracket match, but then lost by pin against Aidan Medina of Lubbock High in his fourth and final match.
Medina lost to Aiden Conners of Grapevine in the consolation semifinals.
Conners went on to win third place.
Competing in the Class 5A Boys’ 132-pound weight class, Quiroz won by pin over Jacob Moreno of Pflugerville.
Quiroz lost by pin to Steven Rodriguez of Canyon Randall in the second round.
He then lost to Ahlee Dart of Dumas by pin in his first consolation bracket match.
Dumas went on to lose in the match for third place.
“For Reynaldo and Dominique, it wasn’t the result we wanted, but they wrestled tough and were competitive, which is all I could ask for,” said Coach Hernandez. “At this level, there is minimal room for error. There were some good and bad things. We hope to build on what they learned through the experience. They both are young. To compete and qualify for state is something to be proud of. Many wrestlers never get the opportunity.”