Area man top athlete
The Sunflower State Games were held in July in Lawrence, but the organization announced its athletes recently.
They didn't have to look far to find the male representative.
Dean Sheets, Linwood, was the Male Athlete of the Year.
A coach at the games, he also competed.
The 74-year-old won the gold medal in wrestling in his age division by defeating at 54-year-old in the title match.
"They stopped the other matches," said Stephanie McDonald, Sheets' daughter. "Everyone in the gym was yelling for him and his opponent.
"There were videos capturing the moment and videos going off everywhere."
Sheets and his opponent received a standing ovation after the match.
The Linwood resident has been involved with wrestling for 54 years and has been a coach for 37 years in Linwood and De Soto.
He has also served as a high school wrestling official and was inducted into the Kansas Wrestling Hall of Fame.
"It is a very great honor to be selected," Sheets said. "I entered to see if I could still accomplish my goal."
Lindsay Carter, an 18-year-old from Parsons, was the Athlete of the Year on the women's side.
Carter won three medals in track and field. She took gold and silver in the long jump and triple jump, respectively, and won bronze in the shot put. She also took fourth in the javelin. Carter is a junior on the Pittsburg State University track team.
The Sunflower Games will leave Lawrence next summer for Topeka. The games have been held in Lawrence since 1999.
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