Friday, July 31, 2020

Gone, Lost & Forgotten: Their Best = Golden West

Located a little more than a half hour of downtown Los Angeles, at one time Golden West had a respectable wrestling team that turned out CCCAA place-winners year in & year out, many of which later became stars in the world of MMA.  The last year of Rustler wrestler was 2004-2005. 

Tim Riley

Riley won a CCCAA title in 1982. 

Trent Kenney
150 lbs 

Kenney placed twice at the CCCAA tournament.  He was fourth in 1985 & fifth in 1988. 

He later became the head coach of Durham High School's Girl's program. 

Rich Benton 

Benton won a CCCAA title in 1985 & took third place in 1987. 

Paul "Hitman" Herrera

A two time Colorado High school state champion for Grand Junction, Herrera won two CCCAA titles for the Rustlers in 1986 & 1987.  He introduced future MMA legend Tito Ortiz to the sport of wrestling, later coaching him as well as Tank Abbot for fights in the Octagon. 

After graduating from Golden West, Herrera went on to finish up his wrestling career at Nebraska where he took fourth place All American honors at the 1990 NCAA Division I championships. 

Eddie Ruiz
134 lbs 

Ruiz was a two time California High School State place-winner for Marina while in high school. He placed seventh his sophomore season & sixth his junior season.  While wrestling for the Rustlers he won the 1987 CCCAA. 

Mike Bolster

Bolster took fourth in the high school state championships for Huntington Beach before coming to Golden West.  Competing for the green & gold, he was a two time CCCAA runner-up in 1992 & 1993. 

Raphael "Noodle" Davis
177 lbs 

Davis took third place at the 1995 CCCAA, before winning a CCCAA title in 1996.  He then took his talents to Cal State Bakersfield where he qualified for the NCAA Division I championships in 1998, before earning Division I All American status with a fifth place finish in 1999.    He later would coach as CSU-Bakersfield as well as Northern Illinois before getting into the world of MMA. 

Tito Ortiz
190 lbs 

After placing fourth in the high school state championships for Huntington Beach, Ortiz won two CCCAA titles for the Rustlers in 1995 & 1996.   He finished up his collegiate career at Cal State Bakersfield before becoming one of the most popular & recognizable names in MMA. 

Jesse "Lil Ninja" Miramontes
125 lbs 

Miramontes took back to back third place CCCAA finishes in 2000 & 2002.   He later wrestled for Cal State Fullerton, where he won a PAC-12 title his junior season.  He later got into MMA

Jesse Jaurez
174 lbs 

Jaurez took seventh place in 2000, before winning a CCCAA title in 2001.   He later wrestled for Montana State Northern where he was a two time NAIA All American.  He was fifth in 2004, winning an NAIA title in 2005.   He later got into MMA. 


Again a big thank you to Al Fontes for valuable information he provided to make CCCAA wrestling a part of "Gone, Lost & Forgotten." 

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