Three THS wrestlers advance to Saturday’s state competition
Salina It wasn't quite the day the Tonganoxie High wrestlers have in mind, but a trio of Chieftains will return to the mat Saturday with a chance at some hardware.
Three THS wrestlers advanced to the second day of competition Friday at the Class 4A state championships in Salina.
Freshman Asher Huseman (138), senior Matt Soetaert (152) and junior Thomas Miller (195) don't have a chance at an individual titles, but each did enough to avoid elimination in their respective weight classes. All three can wrestle their way to a third-place finish in Saturday's finale.
"Those three are able to go (Saturday) and have a chance to bring home a medal. That should be enough motivation right there for them to come and compete."
Huseman, the Chieftains' only individual winner at last week's regional meet, won his first two matches to advance to the semifinals. He lost to El Dorado's Austin Hughey, which knocked him out of title contention. He can claim third with two wins on Saturday.
Soetaert and Miller each lost their first match, but bounced back with wins in the consolation rounds. Each must win three matches on Saturday to take home a bronze medal.
The remaining Chieftain participants — freshman Dalton Tavis (113), sophomore Clayton Himpel (120), senior Caleb Himpel (126), sophomore Joe Wolf (132) and junior Julius Coats (182) were eliminated from the field after losing their first two matches.
Errors could prove costly for any of the remaining THS wrestlers, who would each be eliminated with one more loss.
"Every single match, every single minute, it's important," Goebel said. "This whole field is tough. It's the state tournament. You've got to go out and scratch, claw and find a way to score points."
Saturday's competition will begin at 9 a.m.