The 36th Annual Newbury Park Invitational, featuring 28 teams and 252 wrestlers from California and Nevada, took place on December 2. Palisades High School’s Hamzah Al-Saudi (220 pounds) and Jake Carpenter (152 pounds) took first in their weight classes and Al-Saudi received an MVP award.
This is Ventura County’s longest running wrestling tournament and offers a history of tough early-season competition, with many of the wrestlers ranked at the state and national level. It has a double-elimination format with 24-man brackets, and is limited to 28 teams.
Clovis, a six-time state team champion, took first with 278 points, followed by Fontier with 242, M.L. King (Riverside) with 158 and San Marcos with 127.5. Palisades was fifth with 121 points. (Last year the Dolphins finished 11th in this tournament.)
“We had a really good day and as it went on, I was hoping we could bring home the fourth-place trophy,” said first-year head coach Aldo Juliano, who took seven kids to the tournament. “Then we hit some tough matches against Clovis (second in state) last year, and it knocked out some of our guys.
“Overall it was a good day, but we were so close–we just missed it by six points,” said Juliano, who has about 35 athletes out this season.
In addition to Carpenter and Al-Saudi, other PaliHi wrestlers placing were Aaron Galef, who finished third; Chance Chapman, Joseph Velado and Immanuel Newell (Maho), who all placed fifth in their weight class; and Para Parmoula, who took seventh.