The standard: Randall wrestling carries steep tradition
The Randall wrestling team will compete for a sixth UIL state championship at the Berry Center in Cypress starting Friday. [Kale Steed/ Press Pass Sports]
UIL state wrestling tournament
When: Friday and Saturday
Where: Berry Center, Cypress
Randall wrestling coach David Quirino has built the boys program into a statewide juggernaut over his 25 years at the school.
That’s why it’s no surprise his team is one of the favorites heading into the UIL Class 5A state wrestling tournament that begins Friday at the Berry Center in Cypress.
The tradition speaks for itself.
Randall has won five UIL state champions since 2008 — 2008, 2009, 2013, 2017, 2019. With that, coach Q’s team also won the Texas Wrestling State Dual championship in 2019.
Dating back to 1999, Randall has seen an astounding 28 state individual champions claim a gold medal, with 27 runner ups to their credit.
Quirino carries that tradition proudly, with all of those achievements, and all of those former names imprinted on the wall of honor in the Raider’s wrestling room. Quirino does this to ensure the legacy for the younger generation of wrestlers trying to make their mark.
“All of our guys see the wall of honor we’ve built with all the names that have come through,” Quirino said. “These guys on the team now love it. They take pride in it. They see these state champions on the wall everyday and they want to be a part of it. They want to leave their own legacy, and know we’re talking about them 10 to 15 years down the road.”
Randall will carry eight competitors to this years state meet. Those wrestlers are —Andres Mendoza (120 pounds), Steven Rodriguez (138 pounds), (Moses Torres, 145 pounds), (Greg Dean, 152 pounds), Jaydn Heaton, 160 pounds), Branson Britten (170 pounds), Kale Farrington (182 pounds), and Jaykob Mills (285 pounds).
Last weekend, those eight Randall standouts dominated the Region I-5A Tournament with an unbelievable performance, racking up 261 points.
The Randall wall of honor has seen 28 boys state champions, and one girl state champion dating back to 1999. [Kale Steed/ Press Pass Sports]
Junior Kale Farrington says it’s just another way of this team writing their own chapter of Randall wrestling history.
“When I look at our wall of honor I just want to keep the legacy going,” said Farrington, who has a 43-9 record this season. “There’s are a ton of great names on that wall, and we want to add to that and put as many up as we can. We want to add another team title, and I want my name up there. I know my teammates do too.”
Teammate and senior Moses Torres is making his third appearance at the state meet. Torres has been a part of Randall’s team success but is eager to join his older brother Xavier Torres, who was a three-time individual state champion in 2015, 2017, 2018.
“My older brothers name is on the wall,” said Torres, who is 45-7 this year. “I remember Jacob Rubio, and guys like Braun Marquez. It means a lot to see those names, and see all that tradition. I want to be a part of that. I want my teammates to also. We want to carry that legacy.”
Not only is tradition the selling point of Randall’s run, but Quirino is quick to credit his teams work ethic. This isn’t just a seasonal sport to the Randall wrestlers. It’s taken a special dedication.
“Our program is year around,” Quirino said. “We have a really good summer program that we do that is a freestyle greco program that keeps you good on your feet. It’s all about the training, especially in the summer. If you do your summer training it’s like getting an extra season under your belt.”
AHS standout Jackson makes third appearance at state
Amarillo High’s Jeff Jackson will make his third straight appearance at the UIL Class 5A state wrestling tournament.
Jackson, a senior that competes in the 220 pound weight division, is a back-to-back Region I-5A champion, and placed fifth as a sophomore at the state meet.
On the year, Jackson carries an impressive record of 40-1.
Amarillo-area Boys Qualifiers
Aden Zamora, Fr. 106 pounds
Aaron Trevizo, Sr. 152 pounds
Gabe Garcia, Sr. 126 pounds
Alex Diaz, Jr. 152 pounds
Jeff Jackson, Sr. 220 pounds
Tyler Gibson, Jr., 170 pounds (alternate)
Kysten Morrison, 152 pounds
Josiah Pina, So. 113 pounds
Robert Ruiz, Jr. 126 pounds
Ah Lee Yart, Jr., 132 pounds
Juan Romero, So., 145 pounds
Cannon Speck, Jr., 182 pounds
Karlo Sanchez, Jr., 220 pounds
Carlos Gonzalez, Sr. 195 pounds
JoJo Voiron, Jr., 285 pounds
Andres Mendoza, Jr. 120 pounds
Steven Rodriguez, Jr. 138 pounds
Moses Torres, Sr. 145 pounds
Greg Dean, Sr. 152 pounds
Jaydn Heaton, Sr. 160 pounds
Branson Britten, Jr. 170 pounds
Kale Farrington, Jr. 182 pounds
Jaykob Mills, Sr., 285 pounds