PRESCOTT VALLEY - Becoming Desert Vista's first two-time state champion Friday wasn't enough for Robbie Mathers.

So after beating Tucson Sunnyside's Lucio Murillo, a two-timer himself, Mathers took it upon himself to run a few wind sprints under the grandstand in the bowels of Tim's Toyota Center shortly after his 6-3 win ended.

"I want three and it starts now," said Mathers, who improved 39-3 on the season. "I just felt the need to keep working."

Mathers (125) won the 10th state title in school history - later bumped to 12 by Kendall Love at 135 and Alex Bambic at 215 - and it didn't come easy in the Division I bout.

Murillio nearly got the first takedown right after the opening whistle but Mathers was able to scramble out of it. The match was eventually stopped because Mathers sustained a cut on his forehead on the initial shot by Murillo.

"I was a little dazed, but it actually made me focus more," said Mathers, who gave Murillo his only two defeats of the season. "I came back with more of an edge."

Murillo eventually got a first-period takedown but Mathers escaped with nine seconds left in the first period to pull within 2-1.

Mathers deferred to start the second, and Murillo chose down. With 33 seconds left in the period, Mathers was able to lock up a tilt for a two-point near fall and a 4-2 lead.

"We've been working on his tilt and it's become a real weapon," Desert Vista coach David Gonzalez said. "It changed the match and put him in control."

He then chose down to start the third period, escaped and secured the win with a takedown with 1:26 left in the match.

"I had a lead but I didn't think about winning it until the final seconds because there was too much time left," Mathers said. "Once I won it there was a sense of relief. All of that work and time meant something."

Matthew Mathers, his freshman brother who missed placing by one match, said his big bro is an inspiration.

"I see how he works and how it paid off," said little Mathers, who finished 29-12. "He's a great role model."

Gonzalez wasn't surprised by the older Mathers' decision to get some running in shortly after getting his hand raised.

"It's an indicator of who he is and what drives him," Gonzalez said. "Winning a third one is already on his mind. That's just the way his mind works."

 

 

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