Wrestlers place third at home tournament
Fatigue was present on the faces of the Tonganoxie wrestling team Saturday after it's third-place finish at the Randy Starcher Memorial Wrestling Tournament.
Bill DeWitt, Tonganoxie wrestling coach, looked beat. His wrestlers had the look of guys who had worked hard and would sleep well.
"We're thrilled with third," DeWitt said. "I can't remember the last time we finished that high at a tournament."
Four Chieftains qualified for the finals, and four Chieftains made it to the consolation finals.
Tony Miller, 275 pounds, Chris Calovich, 215 pounds, Zach Subelka, 189 pounds, and Josh Ferris, 112 pounds, placed second in their respective weight classes. Chad Bradley placed third at 171 pounds.
Mike Andrews, 152 pounds, Willy Altman, 140 pounds, and Bruce Walker, 103 pounds, placed fourth.
Basehor-Linwood won the tournament with 197.5 points. Atchison was second with 183.5. Tonganoxie finished with 107.5 points, one point ahead of fourth-place Lansing.
The downside of the tournament was the final round for the Chieftains. Only Bradley won his last match of the day.
DeWitt would have liked to have seen some more first- and third-place finishes and a smaller gap between second place and third place in the team scores. He said everyone on the team is capable of wrestling better.
Bradley scored two points in the first period of his consolation match with a takedown. Leading 5-4, he pinned Joe Johnson of Basehor-Linwood with 1:04 remaining in the third period.
Walker and Altman both lost decisions by two points and the remainder of the team lost by larger margins.
"I just thought we were a little tired throughout the day," DeWitt said.
The Chieftains wrestle at at tournament in Holton Saturday. With no duals scheduled, DeWitt said the team would use practice as a time to fine tune, toughen up and maybe push some of the wrestlers to improve.