Tonganoxie High wrestlers break school records, take 4th at state
The Tonganoxie High wrestling set a school record for medalists last year with three.
On Saturday, the THS wrestling program found itself reaching another high in school history books at the Class 4A State Wrestling Championships at Tony’s Pizza Events Center in Salina.
The Chieftains medaled five wrestlers out of seven who qualified for state this year.
And, THS finished in fourth place as a team, which also marked the highest finish in school history.
Senior Justin Hand (37-9) and junior Korbin Riedel (43-4) competed for Class 4A individual titles in the 170- and 138-pound weight divisions, respectively.
Hand lost Basehor-Linwood senior Jon Trowbridge (35-1) in the 170 title tilt. Hand was 0-2 against Trowbridge this season entering the match, but couldn’t reverse fortunes in the third meeting. Despite a well-fought effort, Hand wasn’t able to pull the upset. Trowbridge escaped with a 7-4 decision and a state title.
Riedel faced Arkansas City’s Marcus Robinson in the 138 championship. The ACHS senior finished the season 42-4 with an 8-4 decision against Riedel, who had one more victory on the season, but had to settle for second.
Freshman Hunter Harris was the lone Chieftain unable to advance to Day 2.
Harris finished the season 17-23 after losing to Louisburg freshman Cade Holtzen (43-4) by technical fall, 16-0, and then Pratt freshman Kaiser Pelland (24-16) by a 4-0 decision in the consolation bracket.
Senior Patterson Starcher (36-6) placed sixth at state.
He defeated Chanute’s junior Dalton Misener (26-16), by an 11-3 major decision before losing to Pratt junior Kadence Riner (35-4) by a 9-7 decision in the championship quarterfinals.
He made his way through the consolation bracket before losing to Basehor-Linwood’s Kaden Jacobson in the fifth-place match at 145. Jacobson won by fall at the 3:18 mark. The Bobcat sophomore finished the season 38-8
Fellow senior Gad Huseman also had a successful season, finishing 32-3.
He placed fourth. Huseman went 2-1 Friday, pinning El Dorado sophomore Kai Wernili (27-17) by fall and then Ottawa senior Jared Parenti (38-7) by 5-2 decision before dropping an 8-2 decision to McPherson junior Scott Radke (40-3).
Huseman lost to Chanute senior Gage Leedy by fall (3:28) in the consolation finals. Leedy finished the season 38-7.
Another senior, Devin Duncan, lost to Winfield junior Owen Braungardt (36-3) by a 9-0 major decision in the 182 opening round. He then outlasted Anderson County junior Dominic Sutton (36-10) with a 5-1 decision.
Duncan ended his career with a 31-15 record his senior season.
He got a victory in the consolation bracket, but Rose Hill senior Chase Thrush pinned Duncan in the next round and eliminated the THS grappler. Thrush went on to take fifth and end his season at 37-7.
And at 195, sophomore Connor Searcy (43-7) placed fourth.
He defeated Andale freshman Cayden Winter (22-18) by pin at the 1:07 mark in the first round and then lost to Prairie View sophomore Chanz Gerleman (18-3) by pin at the 1:36 mark in the championship quarterfinals.
He went on to win two more matches Saturday before losing in the fifth-place match.
Columbus senior Ridge Smith (37-4) won that match by just a 4-2 decision.
Tonganoxie was in fourth place after Day 1 and maintained the placing Saturday.
Arkansas City won the team title with 162.5 points.
Andover Central finished second with 105 and Bonner Springs third with 94.5.
Tonganoxie placed fourth with 83 points. El Dorado took fifth with 80.5 and Abilene sixth with 73.
Rounding out the Top 10 were McPherson (67.5), Burlington (67), Basehor-Linwood ninth (62) and Marysville 10th (58).