GOING TO NATIONALS: ‘Savage’ David Rubio Wins Freestyle Tournament, Qualifies for Nationals

By Jeremy McDonald

jeremymcdonald73@gmail.com

COTTAGE GROVE, Ore.– How his sophomore campaign ended wasn’t how McKay’s David Rubio wanted with a injury, but sure did he make it up on his first action in nearly two months at the Freestyle State Championships at Cottage Grove High School.

And sitting in the top of the stands following his first match victory, a 10-0 Techincal Fall over Sweet Home’s Nich James, it looks as if the sophomore hasn’t skipped a beat.

“It felt good, I felt like I had so much potential at Districts but it went all away because of a medical condition,” said Rubio.  “It was a filling out process, I wanted to see what I can put together today and I still have more to come.”

More to come was to come after three-plus hours sitting around waiting as he had a first-round bye; you could tell throughout the morning as he sat around or drilled and warmed-up was the anxiety of lining up for that first match was there as Rubio was itching to get back to the mat.

“I was anxious,” smiled Rubio.  “I was just waiting it out, getting impatient kind of, because I really wanted to get back on the mats.”

He kept the train rolling and moving, picking up another Tech-Fall in the semis to set up the Championship bout with Lebanon’s Landon Kisting, Rubio made quick work of Kisting in the match as Rubio pinned Kisting in 49 seconds to win the Freestyle State Championship.

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David Rubio with his 1st-Place medal as the Sophmore won the 170-pound Freestyle State Championship (Picture Provided By Troy Thomas)

“It shows me that’s I’ve improved from last year fourth to first,” said Rubio.  “And I want to keep making that improvement I want to keep getting better and it’s a great opportunity for me to better my self as a wrestler.”

That latter part of the quote about the opportunity points to that Rubio, with his Semi-Final win to put him in the finals, qualified him for the National Tournament in Fargo, North Dakota the week of Jul 14-22.

The nerves are there of course, but the Sophmore from Northeast Salem, representing the Green and Gold for McKay, knows come match time; it’s all good.

“I’m not letting nerves effect me because I wrestle better when I’m just having fun and letting loose and This is momentum moving into other tournaments,” said Rubio on The Big Show ahead.

Head Coach Troy Thomas said that these series of wins Saturday speaks to the tireless amount of hard-work that Rubio has done through the off-season to keep improving on his craft day-in and day-out.

“David has dedicated this off season to improving. Even as a sophomore he has taken on a leadership role for the Mckay Wrastlers,” said Thomas.  “He makes coaching very easy for me, and is a shining example of how hard work pays off. A true inspiration to younger wrestlers.”

As for the fun on Saturday, well, let’s just say it took a lot out of David Rubio as he heads back to Salem

“It was really fun I think I only got scored on once, But now I want to go home and take a shower then go to sleep,” he said.

Follow Jeremy McDonald on Twitter at @J_McDonald81 or like jmcdonaldmedia on Facebook!

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