A true passion: Tascosa’s Diaz puts her heart into being the best
Tascosa senior Mia Diaz will compete in the 95 pound weight division at the UIL Class 6A state tournament that starts Friday at the Berry Center in Cypress. Diaz is an impressive 39-0 so far this year. [Provided photo]
UIL state wrestling tournament
When: Friday and Saturday
Where: Berry Center, Cypress
Mia Diaz loves wrestling. There’s no other way to put it. The Tascosa senior has an undeniable passion for the sport every time she steps on the mat.
That dedication is why Diaz is back competing for a second straight year at the UIL Class 6A state wrestling tournament that begins Friday at the Berry Center in Cypress.
Last February, Diaz, who wrestles in the 95 pound weight division, found her stride at the state tournament coming home with a bronze medal.
Ever since that state meet, she’s never looked back.
Diaz has put in the work to become one of the top wrestlers in the state this senior season, boasting a 39-0 record to go with a Region I-6A individual championship she earned last weekend.
“It means a lot to be where I am now,” Diaz said. “I put all of my heart into wrestling. It’s exciting to be back at state. I know what I’m going into now. I’m more mentally prepared. The goals I set for myself are higher now with the experience from last year and how I’ve wrestled this year.”
Tascosa veteran coach Joe Stafford has seen the growth in Diaz from the time she was a freshman. Stafford says Diaz has always had the intangibles to be great, but when the light clicked in her to do the little things correctly is where she started coming into her own.
“Ever since she was a freshman she was so quiet it was hard to get a grasp on what made her tick,” said Stafford, who is in his 12th season as the Tascosa wrestling coach. “But what she does now that makes so many wrestlers successful is, she decided to buy into the hard work. She does all the things nobody sees, and does it to the max. The weight room, the running, wrestling harder. She’s put in the work, and paid attention to the finer details.“
Diaz, whose mother, Angel Diaz was a three-time state champion at Tascosa in 2003, 2005 and 2006, prides herself on discipline and mental toughness. That’s what she feels has taken her to the next level as a competitor.
“I’ve grown mentally,” Diaz said. “I think I’ve made a lot of strides than where I was a year ago heading into state. I feel I’m a far better wrestler for that reason.”
“Mia has turned a corner where she truly believes that she can win any match when they go out on the mat,” Stafford said. “You see that from anyone that’s a true contender. I saw it from her last year at state when she turned a corner in the consolation rounds. She just kept wrestling. She knows she has what it takes to get it done and she believes in herself.”
Caprock girls eye medal stand at state meet
The Caprock girls wrestling team poses after winning the Texas Wrestling State Duals earlier this season. [Provided photo]
The Caprock Lady Longhorns will send five wrestlers to the mat during the Class 5A state tournament.
Those competitors are— Audree Garcia (95 pounds), Vanessa Macedo (110 pounds), Tatiana Garcia 119 pounds), Coleby Velasquez (128 pounds), and Vienna Barbosa (165 pounds).
Out of the 18 girls that qualified from the Amarillo-area nobody is carrying more to Cypress than the Lady Longhorns.
Caprock has had a strong season to date, winning the coveted Lady Longhorns Classic — the longest running girls tournament in the state of Texas. Caprock also won the Texas Wrestling State Duals and finished third at the Region I-5A Tournament in El Paso last Saturday.
“A top five finish is always a goal heading to the state tournament,” Caprock coach Chris Allen said. “But in reality you want your team to place,and go out with a win exspecially our seniors. You want the best for each individual and if they all do that then we have a chance to take home some team hardware as well.”
Amarillo-area Girls state qualifiers
Mia Diaz, Sr. 95 pounds
Avang Subhani, Sr. 128 pounds (alternate)
Faith Anderson, Jr. 138 pounds
Breanna Raney, Sr. 110 pounds (alternate)
Norma Salomon, Sr. 215 pounds
Audree Garcia, Sr. 95 pounds
Vanessa Macedo, Sr. 110 pounds
Tatiana Garcia, So. 119 pounds
Coleby Velasquez, Sr. 128 pounds
Vienna Barbosa, Sr. 165 pounds
Viriyha Pizzaro, So. 165 pound (alternate)
Claudia Aguirre, So. 138 pounds
Sean Gonzales, Jr. 120 pounds (alternate)
Andrew Balderaz, Jr. 138 pounds (alternate)
Victor Gutierrez, Sr. 170 pounds
Audalie Cruz, Jr. 95 pounds
Jadyn Cordova, Jr. 102 pounds
Madison Bruce, Jr. 215 pound (alternate)
Avery Stout, So. 95 pounds
Avery Martinez, So. 102 pounds
Jayrn Ortegon, So. 110 pounds