We are jumping into covering more wrestling this year at Sports in Kansas. Have a tip or something that deserves to be on here weekly? Be sure to email suggestions each and every week to both Chet Kuplen & Conor Nicholl at both of the following emails: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org. If you would like to be an advertiser and help support our coverage of high school wrestling contact Chet Kuplen at email@example.com or 620-719-0283
Manhattan moves from No. 5 to No. 2 in 6A; GB and S. Center compete
Manhattan had an impressive week at the Flatwater Fracas, a massive two-day, 27-team dual tournament that is held in Grand Island, Neb. and is split into Gold (16 teams) and Silver (11 teams).
In the Gold division, Manhattan took fourth and was the highest finishing Kansas team. Kearney, host Grand Island and Millard South, all Nebraska schools, took 1-3. Great Bend, which is ranked seventh in Class 5A, took 12th place in Gold.
In Silver, Smith Center, ranked fifth in 3-2-1A, earned sixth place.
In the third place match, Millard South defeated Manhattan, 39-31. Manhattan started the tournament in Pool B and won 60-15, 63-9 and 48-30. In its fourth competition, the Indians faced Smith Center and earned a 64-15 victory. Then, Manhattan narrowly beat Great Bend, 33-30.
The key last match came at 160 when senior Bubba Wilson, ranked first in 6A, earned the victory in 1 minute, 13 seconds. In the quarterfinal, Manhattan won 45-30. However, in the semifinals, Manhattan lost, 35-32, to Grand Island before the third place match.
Manhattan was 6-2, Great Bend won three duals, Smith Center two.
Wilson led Manhattan with 47 team points and Easton Taylor delivered 40. Wilson finished 8-0 and won every match by fall, except for a 20-5 technical fall finish.
Overall, Manhattan tied Grand Island with the most pins with 49 and led all teams with fewest collective time in the pins at 101 minutes, 39 seconds.
Taylor, a freshman, is ranked third at 113 pounds. Taylor was 7-1 and lost only to a Grand Island wrestler by fall in 5:59, one second before the match ended. He had five pins, a 17-5 major decision and a forfeit victory.
Tate Sauder and Quincy Saddler each scored 37 points. Saddler, a senior, stands third at 170. Saddler was 8-0 with four wins by fall, a 16-5 major decision and three decisions. Sauder, a junior who is ranked fifth at 120, was 7-1. His only loss came to Great Bend’s Drew Liles, the No. 1 ranked wrestler in 5A at 120.
At 138 and 145, senior Jacob Mitchell and junior Darius Island-Jones were both 6-2. Mitchell is ranked fourth, and Island-Jones is sixth. At 152, Daron Island-Jones, who is unranked, went 7-1 and only lost to Great Bend’s Alex Randolph (5-2).
At 220, senior Christian Schlepp, ranked second, went 5-1 with four quick pins, all in 3:26 or less, and a 3-2 decision.
Sauder delivered five victories by fall, had a major decision and a decision.
For Great Bend, Liles finished 6-2 with a variety of wins, including a forfeit, technical fall, decision, fall and two major decisions. Both of his losses came to out of state wrestlers who combined for a 15-1 record.
At 138, George Weber, who is ranked fourth, went 8-0. He rarely permitted points with wins by scores of 7-0, 10-0, 15-0 and 4-0, along with three falls and a 12-3 major decision.
GB’s Gage Fritz finished 7-1 at 145 and lost only a 3-0 match. He had a 12-0 major decision, a fall in 3:19, a 16-1 technical fall victory, an 8-3 decision, a 17-2 tech fall, and two falls in a combined 6:34. Fritz, a junior, is ranked sixth at 145.
For Smith Center, junior Colton Shoemaker, ranked second at 113 in 3-2-1A, finished 6-1 and lost only to Manhattan’s Taylor in a fall in 5:05. Shoemaker had a 6-4 decision and a forfeit victory and delivered falls in 53, 18, 50 and 10 seconds.
Junior Jaden Atwood was 5-2 at 138. He is second ranked in 3-2-1A at the weight class. Ethan Peterson is unranked at 170, though also posted a 5-2 mark.
Junior Brell Spiess is fifth ranked at 182 and was 5-2.
Lautt leads way at Johnson County Classic
St. James’ Cade Lautt is 17-0 with 16 pins. He has captured three titles and was named Outstanding Wrestler of the Johnson County meet last week. Lautt, a junior, is ranked third at 220 pounds behind Newton’s Wyatt Hendrickson and Bonner Springs’ Caleb Willis.
Hendrickson is fifth in the nation, and El Dorado’s Braden Morgan is ninth, according to Flo Wrestling. Morgan is ranked first in 4A. Hendrickson, Morgan and Lautt all match up Jan. 5 in Derby.
Washburn Rural wins at Bishop Carroll; Murray wins 1-2 matchup; Carter wins 1/1 match
Washburn Rural maintained its No. 3 ranking in Class 6A. The Junior Blues had 177.5 points and Dodge City was second at 155.5 points. DC moved from fifth to fourth. Newton was third at 129 and Winfield was fourth at 114 points. Newton was eighth at 5A, and Winfield was fifth at 4A.
Sophomore Bishop Murray (14-0) captured the title at 106 pounds with a sudden victory in the finals against Dodge City’s Damian Mendez (14-4). Murray and Mendez are 1-2 in 6A in the weight class.
Freshman Austin Fager (13-2) earned the title at 145 pounds. He is ranked second at 145 and is 13-2 overall. He went 5-0 with four wins by fall and a technical fall victory. At 182, junior Gavin Carter (10-0) remained first in the classification and defeated Winfield’s Owen Braungardt, 13-10, in the final.
Braungardt (13-2) remained first in 4A at 182 pounds.
At 220, Preston Williams (9-1) is unranked and took his first loss of the season when he fell to Newton’s Hendrickson by technical fall. Hendrickson (15-0) won by technical fall.
Dodge City with multiple top finishers; Darville beats Hicks in 1/1 matchup
In addition to Mendez taking second at 106, Couy Weil (15-3) was second at 120, and Danny Rojas (10-7) took third at 126. Weil fell, 13-1, to Newton’s Grant Treaster in the finals by fall. Treaster stands at 13-1 and is ranked second in 5A at 120.
Senior Garrett Edwards (15-3) was first at 138 with a 6-2 win against Campus’ Nathan Bowen in the finals. Edwards is now fifth in the rankings and Bowen sixth.
Last week, Edwards was fifth and Bowen (12-2) was unranked. At 145, Marcelino Otero (11-6) took third, and Jashon Taylor (12-6) was second at 160. Taylor stands fifth at 160.
At 285, Evan Darville (11-0) ranked No. 1 in 6A, rolled through his first four matches with pins in 1:17, 46 seconds, 25 seconds and 1:07. In the finals, he handed Wichita Northwest’s Marcus Hicks his first loss.
Darville and Hicks (Oklahoma commit) are two of the state’s top football players, and Hicks (5-1) is ranked first in 5A. Darville defeated Hicks, 3-1.
Marysville wins at Abilene, continues to lead 4A pack; Hayes/Slupianek match highlights
The Abilene tournament had a bevy of top teams and has helped shape the pecking order in 4A. Two weeks ago, Marysville, Pratt and Scott City went 1-2-3 in the rankings. After last week, it goes Marysville, Scott City and Pratt.
Marysville won the big tournament with 224.5 points, followed by Scott City at 203, Pratt at 186, McPherson at 169.5, Salina Central at 160.5 and host Abilene sixth at 137.5. McPherson remained outside the top-10 in the 5A rankings, and SC stayed tenth in 5A.
For Marysville, at 120, Isaac Novotny, ranked fifth at 11-3, took third. In the semifinals, he fell to Salina Central’s Elix Hernandez. In the third place match, he defeated McPherson’s E.J. Kretzer by fall in 1:46.
At 126, Ethan Crownover (12-2) was second and is ranked second in 4A. In the final, Salina Central’s Drew Burgoon (11-0) defeated Crownover, 6-2. Burgoon had shifted down a weight class after he was ranked fourth at 132 and is now second at 126 in this week’s rankings.
At 138, Jakob Snellings (11-3) took third. He defeated Phillipsburg’s Austin Niblock, 4-2, in the finals. At 160, Noah Ackerman (12-2) took second with a 4-1 record.
He won by falls in 41 seconds, 43 seconds, 8-0 and by fall in 1:59. In the finals, McPherson’s Scott Radke (15-0) delivered a 10-2 major decision victory.
Radke is ranked second at 160 in 5A after he opened the season third.
At 170, Storm Slupianek (13-1) took his first loss of the season in the final to Scott City’s Wyatt Hayes (11-0). Hayes is ranked first at 170, and Slupianek is third. Hayes collected a 3-1 victory. In his other four matches, Slupianek had a 5-0 victory and then wins by fall in 1:20, 1:12 and 1:22.
At 182, Matt Lindhorst (11-3) remains unranked and took second to Salina Central’s Taylon Peters. At 195, Garron Champoux (13-0) has been ranked third all season. He finished with a 7-0 finals match against Basehor-Linwood’s Josh Willcutt, a 17-2 wrestler.
Peters leads Salina Central
While Salina Central had multiple individual standouts, 182-pound senior Taylon Peters (9-0) was arguably the most impressive wrestler at the tournament. After a first round bye, he collected wins by fall in 41, 58, 36 and 30 seconds.
At 113, Slade Adam (10-1) took his first loss of the winter with a 4-3 defeat to William Stroda of Abilene. Stroda is 16-1 this season.
Stroda is ranked first at 113 in 4A, and Adam is third. In addition to Hernandez and Burgoon, SC had success at 145 with Ethan Bolen and Levi Sutton.
The two teammates are a combined 12-4 and met in the third place match with Bolen earning a 6-2 decision versus Sutton.
Mac’s Edmonson beats Wren in No. 1s matchup; odd matchup for Kretzer twins
At 138, McPherson’s Rhett Edmonson (15-0) has enjoyed a big climb up the 5A rankings. He was fourth at 132 in the Dec. 4 rankings and is currently first at 138. He finished 5-0 and beat Scott City’s Kaden Wren, 6-4, in the title. Wren took his first loss of the winter and is 10-1. Wren remains first at 138 in 4A.
At 220, Kourtney Craig (9-5) took third and had an upset in the third-place match against Pratt’s Hunter Huber, who is ranked fourth in 4A at 195 pounds. Craig captured a 6-2 victory.
McPherson senior twins E.J. and Mya Kretzer, children of longtime Bullpup coach Doug Kretzer, were each in the 120-pound bracket. Mya, a nationally ranked girl wrestler and a starter on the boys’ team last season, took seventh and is 4-5 this year. E.J. finished fourth and stands at 7-8.
The two had to meet in the quarterfinals, but E.J. won by forfeit. The official raised E.J.’s hand to signify the win, and as the two walked off, E.J. grabbed Mya’s hand and raised it in a sibling moment. The majority of girls will compete next at the Jan. 6 Burlington tournament.
In her other four matches, Mya finished 2-2 with both wins coming against Gus Haug of Abilene. In the second round, Mya fell to Phillipsburg’s Aaron Lenker (13-5) by a 12-2 major decision. Lenker is fourth in 3-2-1A at 120 pounds.
McDaniel stays perfect for Scott City; gets big win versus Whitson
In addition to Hayes and Wren for Scott City, Justus McDaniel improved to 8-0 at 132 pounds. He is ranked first in the classification. In the final, McDaniel defeated Buhler’s Adam Whitson, 8-5, in sudden victory. Whitson is 11-2 and is ranked third at 132. The two maintained their same spots in the rankings from the previous week.
At 145, Theron Tucker (11-1) had an 8-2 decision in the second round sandwiched between falls in 20 and 34 seconds. At 220, Kyle Sherwood (11-1) captured the title. He defeated Pratt’s Huber in sudden victory in the semifinals. In the final, Sherwood beat Buhler’s Bradley Briggs, 6-2. Sherwood is ranked fourth at 220 and entered the rankings for the first time this year.
Weber up to second for Pratt; Cox with upset
At 106, Pratt sophomore Devon Weber bumped from third to second in the rankings and is 14-0 after a title for the Greenbacks. He had been ranked third since the preseason. Weber had a big run with four victories and a bye. The first round win came by fall in 19 seconds and the final was a 23-second victory.
At 126, Dylan Cox is just 3-9 but took fourth and pulled off a big upset in the first round versus Phillipsburg’s Josh Sisson, who had not lost entering the tournament and was ranked first in 3-2-1A in the previous polls. Cox pinned Sisson in 4:30. Sisson came back to take fifth and is 12-2.
At 152, top-ranked Kadence Riner (13-1) earned the title with a 9-6 victory in the finals versus Zach Jeanneret, who is ranked sixth at 160 pounds in 4A.
Colby wins at Goodland, stays first at 3-2-1A; Finley/Branum up in rankings
In the 13-team Goodland Holiday Classic, Colby won with 348 points and remained the top-ranked team at 3-2-1A. Rocky Ford (Colo.) and Ulysses tied for second with 306 points, and Hoxie had 200 points for fourth.
Freshman Tyler Voss (16-2) won the crown at 106 pounds. He stands third in the latest rankings, a place he has held since the season’s second poll. In the final, he defeated Ulysses’ Quentin Pauda, 2-0. Pauda dropped to 11-2.
At 138, senior Kurt Schroeder stands sixth in the rankings after four victories and a loss to an out-of-state wrestler in the finals. Schroeder is 15-4 this year.
At 182, senior Kory Finley, ranked second in the classification, moved to 15-3 and had all five victories by fall. Finley won his matches in 29 seconds, 2:24, 1:05, 36 seconds and 3:58. Finley bumped from third to second this week.
At 195, sophomore Hagan Booi (16-1) took his first loss of the winter after four straight pins. Booi, ranked third at 195, lost to an out-of-state wrestler in the finals.
At 220, senior Tucker Branum (8-0) was unranked last week but moved into the rankings at fifth this week. In the final, he defeated WaKeeney-Trego junior Dillon Dunn, who was ranked sixth last week, 13-2. Before then, Branum had been very dominating with pins in 17 seconds, 22 seconds, 1:34 and 1:01.
Porsch continues to roll for Hoxie; one of several Indian champions
While Hoxie might not have the quantity of some of the larger 3-2-1A schools, Hoxie has excellent quantity. At 120, Drew Bell (13-2) took second. At 132, Dylan Weimer (14-1) captured another title. He is ranked second in the classification. Weimer had a first-round bye and then earned four victories by fall.
At 145, Aidan Baalman (15-2, No. 5 3-2-1A) earned a title with three wins by fall and two decisions.
At 160, Dayton Porsch (17-0, No. 1), one of the best wrestlers in state history, rolled over the bracket. He had wins in 1:31, 1:48, 39 seconds, 1:15 and 25 seconds.
HC’s Segarra up to first at 126
Hill City senior Alec Segarra (10-3) bumped to first in the rankings. He fell by sudden victory to Garden City’s Erik Dominguez in the final at Goodland.
Norton wins Fran Jorgensen in Cambridge, Neb.
For the second straight week, Norton went to Nebraska. The Bluejays captured the 18-team Fran Jorgensen meet with 187.5 points, ahead of two Nebraska schools. Oberlin took fourth with 98 points.
At 106, Darius Shields (13-4) won with a 3-1 victory in the championship. At 126, Camdyn Unterseher captured the crown, improved to 8-3 and had a 7-3 decision in the finals match.
At 160, Brandon Vacura (10-1) enjoyed his second straight title in dominating fashion with a bye and three wins by fall. All three wrestlers are unranked in this week’s poll, and Norton is seventh in the team rankings.
However, at 170, junior Cole Amlong is third in the rankings, captured a tournament crown and improved to 9-2. He earned decisions by 11-5, 8-4 and 6-2.
At 220, Hayden Wiltfong (7-0) is ranked second and picked up a title. Well-known for his pins, Wiltfong had an incredibly dominating weekend with pins in 26 and 35 seconds, in 1:19 and in the finals match in 42 seconds.