Three SWKS Boys claim state wrestling titles
Now that the 2019-20 KSHSAA Boys State Wrestling Championships are in the books, we can take a look at what transpired in all of the classes and celebrate the first season in which Kansas had separate state-sanctioned tournaments for both the boys and girls.
Three wrestlers from Southwestern Kansas claimed state titles, and several others came close and wrestled in the championship bouts of their respective weight classes. Here's how all the action went down over the weekend, separated by classification.
Tate Seabolt of Cimarron and DJ Knox of Goodland each wrestled for individual titles at Fort Hays State University, and each were turned away in their respective title matches by wrestlers from the squad that claimed the team championship.
Knox helped lead Goodland - who sent just three wrestlers, but had all three place in the Top 6 of their weight class - to a 10th place finish. In the process, Knox spent a total of 2 minutes, 19 seconds in winning his first three matches via pinfall. However, Norton Community's Darius Shields would keep Knox (40-5) off the scoreboard in the title match at 106 pounds, winning 5-0 to deny Knox the state title.
Seabolt (36-2) won by pinfall and two decisions to advance to the championship bout at 170 pounds, where he was decisioned by North Community's Cole Amlong, 4-2.
Only six area wrestlers qualified from the Southwest Preps area, but five of them placed. Joining Knox on the medal stand from Goodland were 138-pounder Mason Hernandez (36-15), and 195-pounder Dawson Holub (35-16). Wichita County's lone qualifier, Jesse Gardner (33-4), placed 4th at 160 pounds.
The other wrestler from the area who qualified for state, Kade Lovelady of Lakin (16-18), went 1-2 at the state tournament at 152 pounds.
Scott Community edged out Ulysses for 8th place in the team standings, while Chanute dominated the meet at Tony's Pizza Events Center in Salina, winning the team title by a 57-point margin.
Scott Community 138-pounder Kaden Wren ended up winning a state title, using two pins and a semifinal win in the sudden victory period, before registering an 11-0 major decision over Kolby Roush of Holton to claim the title. The Beavers had two other placers - Justus McDaniel placed 6th at 145 pounds, and Gabe Bowers was 5th at 285.
Both Colby and Ulysses had two placers each - Tyler Voss (39-4, 125) and Hagan Booi (39-5, 195) both placed 5th for the Eagles, while Quentin Pauda (35-3, 106) placed 3rd and Ayston Perez (33-4, 285) placed 2nd for the Tigers.
Perez scored three pins to advance to the championship bout, but Logan Brown of Iola ended Perez's pursuit of gold with a pin in 3:52 to win the title.
Dodge City showed that the runner-up finish they had at regionals was no fluke, as they finished third in the state tournament, just ahead of Garden City. Mill Valley outpointed Topeka-Wahsburn Rural to win the team title.
The Red Demons were led by three wrestlers who advanced to the title bouts, with 152-pounder Luke Barker winning the title. Barker (28-6) won by fall in his opener, then won on three decisions, including a 2-1 decision over Izaiah DelValle of Hutchinson in the title bout to bring home the gold.
Damian Mendez (27-1, 113) and Garrett Edwards (27-8, 145) also wrestled for titles but came up short in the title bouts. Mendez registered three pins in the first three matches, then dropped a 5-2 decision to Bishop Murray of Washburn Rural in the championship bout. Edwards won his first two bouts by pinfall and major decision, respectively, before taking the semifinals in a sudden victory round, and losing the championship match to Cason Lindsey of Derby by a 1-0 decision.
Dodge City had four other placers - Rudy Hernandez (31-21) placed 5th at 138 pounds, Marcelino Otero (31-7) placed 4th at 160 pounds, Ruben Rayas (10-5) placed 6th at 170 and Ryan Parga (37-14) placed 6th at 182.
Garden City had a total of seven state placers, led by state champion Jacob Holt at 138 pounds.
Holt (31-2) used two pins and a decision to advance to the title bout, where he won in the first tie-breaker over Dallas Koelzer of Olathe South, using an escape to pick up the 2-1 win.
Four Buffaloes finished in 3rd place - Steven Sellers (32-14, 132), Josh Janas (39-11, 152), Jared Arellano (21-10, 160) and Alexavier Rodriguez (25-8, 170). Erick Dominguez (31-17) finished 4th at 145 pounds, and Ryan Heiman (39-16) placed 5th at 126 pounds.
Liberal finished in 13th place, and had three state placers - Trystian Juarez (25-16) placed 6th at 145 pounds, Jaime Arenivas (33-14) was 6th at 220 pounds, and Zeth Mansell (21-8) ended up in 4th place at 285 pounds.