Tonganoxie wrestling class of ‘05 advances to state meet together
For Tonganoxie, Saturday's Class 4A regional wrestling tournament was as easy as 1-2-3.
At No. 1 was Ross Starcher, No. 2 Hunter Samuels and No. 3 Garrett Palmer.
Tonganoxie's three seniors punched their tickets to the state tournament Friday and Saturday in Wichita with big regional victories at Fort Scott.
Starcher placed first in the 171-pound division, Samuels was second at 130 and Palmer third at 145.
Starcher defeated De Soto's Leif Goleman in the tournament finals, while Samuels lost to Eudora's Andy Coffman in his regional final.
Palmer, meanwhile, defeated Fort Scott's Jordan Renfro in his consolation final.
"It's just awesome to see them all in Wichita together with the same goal -- place at state," THS coach Jeremy Goebel said.
This will be Starcher's fourth state appearance and Palmer's third. Samuels will be making his first trip to Wichita.
Tonganoxie finished the tournament in eighth place out of 16 teams. THS scored 74 points, just behind Bonner Springs, which tallied 74.5.
Fort Scott won the regional with 184.5 points, while Baldwin was second at 165. Eudora came in third with 123.5 as Spring Hill (119), De Soto (96) and Louisburg (87.5) held the next three spots.
"I couldn't ask for a better performance from our kids," Goebel said. "We did everything we could have done; we left it all on the mat."
Although some of Tonganoxie's younger wrestlers didn't earn state berths, Goebel said the regional would be a confidence-builder for next winter.
One of Tonganoxie's freshmen, Beau Waters, nearly had an invitation to state.
Waters, however, fell in overtime in the consolation semifinals at 103 and missed one of the top four spots.
The state tournament will get started at 9 a.m. Friday and will conclude Saturday evening.
This will mark Tonganoxie's final trip -- at least for a few years -- to Wichita for a state meet.
Next year, Class 4A will have its state tourney in Salina, while 6A and 5A's state site is yet to be determined. Class 3-2-1A still will be held in Hays.
Goebel hopes the team's final trip to Wichita will be a good one.
"These seniors are not happy to just be going to state," Goebel said.
- Log on to The Mirror's Web site, www.tonganoxiemirror.com, for updates from the state meet.