El Camino Real winner remembers father

first_imgHe won the title on what would have been his dad’s 46th birthday by pressing Le’s shoulders to the mat with 71/2 seconds left in the second period of the match. “This is the happiest moment for me because this is for my dad,” Niemeyer said. “When I got up from pinning him, all I could think of was of him coming to my matches.” Niemeyer was one of seven El Camino Real wrestlers to reach the finals. But it was host San Fernando that claimed the team City title – its 12th – with five champions. The Tigers qualified five to next week’s state championships in Bakersfield on the night San Fernando named its gym after De John, the program’s founder. Tony Mendez (112), George Garcia (125), Angel Morales (140), Rashaad Reynolds (145) and Mike Solis (152) won their weight-division titles. That marks Solis’ third straight City championship and Reynolds’ second in as many years. “This win means more because I’m going to go into state and win some matches,” Reynolds said. “It’s been tough, but I have to make it happen at state.” Chatsworth’s Thomas Cattrell avenged last year’s title loss to El Camino Real’s Steve Munoz with a 4-3 decision win in the 130-pound category. Juan Tec added another title for Chatsworth with a 7-4 decision win against Monroe’s Damiel Ramirez. SAN FERNANDO – T.J. Niemeyer dropped to his knees and pointed to the newly named Sam De John Gymnasium ceiling Saturday. The El Camino Real of Woodland Hills wrestler not only had just pinned San Fernando’s Mike Le to win his first City Section championship in three tries, but he also had fulfilled a promise. Niemeyer vowed to dedicate his 119-pound title to his father, Frank, who died in a motorcycle crash Oct.8. center_img El Camino Real’s Adam Ali beat Sylmar’s Jorge Rodriguez to claim the 103-pound title. Granada Hills’ Sebastian Escobar took the 135-pound title, while other titles went to Birmingham of Lake Balboa’s Damian Niriego (160), Johnny Fernandez (215) and Joe Misini (heavyweight). Misini beat San Fernando’s Lorenzo chapman 2-1 in triple overtime. Dorsey’s Stafford Faulkner repeated as 189-pound champion after pinning San Fernando’s Mike Castillo. [email protected] (818) 713-3607 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more