BAKERSFIELD -- Greg Hartman has been on a mission this year.
On Friday night at the CIF State Championships at Rabobank Arena, the Los Banos 145-pound senior moved a step closer to accomplishing his life-long goal -- bringing a state medal home.
Hartman was the only area wrestler to advance to the second day of the tournament.
Hartman was just one of two area wrestlers to win a match in Bakersfield. Los Banos teammate Kendal Klette went 1-2 before being eliminated.
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"(Placing at state) has been my goal since I was a little kid," said Hartman, who went 3-1 on Day 1. "I've worked hard throughout my career just to get here and do this.
"It's going to be an amazing feeling when I have that state medal in my hand. I don't care what place it says on the back."
Hartman is one win away from being guaranteed a spot on the podium later tonight.
"I try to fill my head with 'I'm the best, and I work harder than him,' " he said. "I always think I have the upper hand.
"When you wrestle like you have nothing to lose it breaks (your opponent) mentally."
Golden Valley's Ben Weber (112 pounds), Livingston's Kevin Villalobos (135), Dos Palos' DJ Quiroz (135), Buhach Colony's Mikey Guzman (125) and Luis Boroquez (189) all lost their first two matches on Friday.
Guzman was one win shy of his 100th career victory.
Klette was knocked into the consolation bracket after opening the tournament with a loss.
The 103-pound junior then picked off Mission San Jose's Corbin Lee before being knocked out of the tournament with a 9-8 loss to Calvary Chapel's Klette was knocked into the consolation bracket, where he improved to 1-1 after knocking off Corbin Lee of Mission San Jose. Calvary Chapel's Gavan McDonald then eliminated Klette with a 9-8 win.
"(McDonald) tried to punk me at first," said Klette, who was cleared to wrestle just on time for this postseason. "I should have controlled the first round like I did the second and third."
Klette trailed 4-1 after the first round. He came back to tie it at four apiece in the second. However, McDonald moved on after hanging onto a one-point advantage in the third round by riding out Klette until the final buzzer.