Here are the top eight wrestlers in the state as selected by the Arizona Republic, along with 10 honorable mentions and Coach of the Year for High School Men’s Wrestling.
Andres Avelar, Laveen Cesar Chavez, Sr.
Two-time state champion and his second selection to the All-Arizona Men’s Wrestling Team. Avelar had a 35-2 doubles record, rose this season from the 120 weight class to win the Division I title in the 132. Also, he won the Division I Section IV title and capped his career as a four-time placer in the state tournament and a three-time state runner-up.
Gavin Davis, Arizona Lutheran, Sr.
Had 44 pins, tied for a record 59 double wins with Ty Ryan of Glendale Raymond Kellis. Davis went undefeated on his way to the Division IV title in the 170. Tournament wins include the Gila Valley Invitational, Tim Brown Invitational, Joseph City Invitational, Verrado Invitational and Rocky Nelson Invitational.
Davian Guanajuato, Santa Cruz Valley, Jr.
A two-time champion who helped lead Santa Cruz Valley to its second straight Division IV state tag team title. Guanajuato hasn’t lost a game in the past two seasons and moved up from the 106 weight class to the 113 and went 43-0 this season. He won the Division IV Section III title, earned first place in the Show Low Invitational, Mile High Challenge, Peoria Tournament of Champions, Payson Tournament, and won consecutive Division IV Section III titles.
Brock Locknikar, Scottsdale Notre Dame Prep, Sr.
Harvard-hired heavyweight who went undefeated at 29-0 and capped his high school career with his first Division II state title in the 220. Locknikar gave up no offensive runs or outs all season, a had 20 pins, won first place in his weight class, and was named the Peoria Tournament of Champions’ top wrestler.
Luke Padwe, Phoenix Pinnacle, Sr.
Went 56-0, tied for 11th on the state’s all-time single-season list with 41 pins and won the Division I state title in the 220 weight class. Padwe a finished his high school career as a two-time Division I Section II champion, placed three times in the state tournament, made history as the first undefeated state champion in the history of Pinnacle wrestling and clinched a school-record 11 career tournament championships.
Keller Rock, Chino Valley, Sr.
Three-time state champion who descended from the 170 weight class in Division III, which he won last season, and won the Division III title in the 160. Rock was 58-1 , has earned Most Outstanding Wrestler awards in his tournament wins, including Marana Mountain View Invitational, Mingus Duals, Mile High Challenge and Doc Wright Invitational. He was also a runner-up in the Reno Tournament of Champions and finished his high school career with four first-place wins in Division III, Section IV. Finished his Chino Valley career with a 201-9 doubles record.
Robert White, Safford, Sr.
Division III state champion who went undefeated at 55-0 in the 182. Had 45 pins and had 286 team points for Safford. Wins from this tournament include the Division III Section I title, Flowing Wells, Marana Mountain View Dual, William Bell, and Catalina Trojan. Finished his high school career with an overall record of 178-12 in doubles, 140 pins and 181 eliminations.
Jesse Ybarra, Tucson Sunnyside, Sr.
Iowa commit and three-time state champion who went undefeated at 37-0, had 31 pins and won the Division II state championship in the 126 weight class last season. His tournament victories include Division II Section I, Flowing Wells, Mile High Challenge, Peoria Tournament of Champions, participated in “Who’s Number One” where he defended his number one ranking in the country in his weight class.
James Brown, Tucson Sunnyside, Jr.
Came in second after a hard-fought Division II Championship game in the 120 and helped lead Sunnyside to its third straight state tag team title.
Emilio Ysquirre, Santa Cruz Valley, So.
This is Ysquirre’s second consecutive All-Arizona honorable mention selection. He is a two-time Division IV state champion who went from 120 to 126 and posted a 39-2 record.
Tanner Crosby, St. Johns, Sr.
He went from 126 to 132 last season to win his third Division IV state championship and finished his St. Johns career with a 51-5 record, the most win total at that weight among the four divisions of the state.
Ty Ryan, Glendale Raymond Kellis, Sr.
Two-time Division II state champion in the 170 who went 59-2 this season.
Preston Cameau, Phoenix Desert Vista, Sr.
Two-time Division I state champion who went from 160 to 170 weight this season and was 34-2. Cameau has placed first for the past two seasons in the Mesa Skyline’s Coyote Open, Division I Section III tournament and was a runner-up in the Moon Valley Wrestling Tournaments.
Alfonso Martinez, Phoenix Desert Vista, Sr.
Won its second straight Division I state title after going from 145 to 152 last season. Martinez was 48-1 and atop the podium for first place for the second straight year at the Coyote Open, Moon Valley and Flowing Wells Invitational, and Division I, Section III tournaments. He also won the Peoria Tournament of Champions and placed second at the Sierra Nevada Classic.
Zach Espalin, Chandler, Jr.
Won its third consecutive Division I state title after going from 113 last season to 120 and posting a 49-3 record.
Matthew Stevenson, Peoria Liberty, Sr.
Was 47-2 in the 182 and was one of the top wrestlers in helping Liberty earn their second straight tag team victory in the Division I State Championship.
Clayson Goodwin, Benson, Sr.
Two-time Division IV heavyweight champion in the 220 and was 39-1 this season.
Jacob Moore, Anthem Boulder Creek, Jr.
Won 285 heavyweight title for Division I and had a 46-2 record.
Coach of the year
Jeff Welsing, Yuma
Despite only having eight qualifiers for the Division III state tournament, Welsing rallied Yuma to persevere and led the Criminals to their second state title in three seasons.
How they were selected
The eight nominees for Arizona High School Wrestler of the Year were selected by azcentral athletic high school staff during coverage of the 2019-20 season using first-hand observations, interviews with coaches and players, statistical analysis, rankings and performance of players in Arizona. Interscholastic Association State Tournament.