By CONOR NICHOLL
This past weekend featured several major tournaments, notably the well-known Newton Tournament of Champions
Mendez named Most Outstanding Wrestler at the 59th annual Newton Tournament of Champions
Host Newton won the prestigious Newton Tournament of Champions with 198 points. This is annually one – if not the best regular season wrestling tournament in Kansas. Goddard was second with 156.5 points. Blue Valley Southwest took third with 152.5 points. Washburn Rural finished fourth with 141.5. Maize was sixth at 137, followed by Dodge City, Lawrence Free State and Manhattan.
In the Jan. 11 Kansas Wrestling Coaches Association wrestling rankings, Newton is ranked fifth in 5A, behind Maize, Blue Valley Southwest, Goddard and Shawnee Heights.
In 6A, Washburn Rural is ranked first, followed by Derby, Garden City, Dodge City, Manhattan and Lawrence Free State.
Newton brought two teams to the competition, which generally happens with a host school at a tournament. At 106, Lucas Kaufman (21-6) took third place. Nick Treaster, a defending state champion and ranked No. 1 for all classes at 113, won the title and improved to 21-2. Treaster won two matches by fall, a 7-0 victory and a 1-0 tiebreaker.
Newton also had AB Stokes return to the program. Stokes’ dad, also named AB, was the former head coach at Larned, and then became an assistant coach at Bethel College. The Stokes family moved to Oklahoma, and Stokes recently took over the Bethel College program as head football coach. The younger Stokes has been a standout wrestler.
He improved to 8-1 and finished second at 120 points. In the semifinal, Stokes defeated Lawrence Free State’s Darius Shields, who cleared 100 career victories and won a state championship at Norton his sophomore year. Stokes qualified for Oklahoma state wrestling last season.
At 126, Bailey Steinmetz (21-9) finished fifth. Colin Bybee improved to 16-5 and took fourth at 138.
At 220, Logan Buchanan (23-5) won the championship. He finished 4-0, including a sudden victory against Manhattan’s Talique Houston.
At 285, junior Rio Gomez (22-4) delivered the title, including a win by fall in 2:57. Gomez dominated his way through the bracket with wins by fall in 49 seconds, 1:07, 59 seconds and 2:57 versus Blue Valley Southwest’s Andrew Farrell in the finals. The semifinal win came against Lawrence Free State’s Tai Newhouse, who has committed to Tulsa football and is 10-2 in wrestling this year.
A freshman, Kaufman is ranked fourth at 106. Treaster is ranked first at 113. Stokes is ranked third at 120. Steinmetz is ranked fifth at 126. Collin Bybee is ranked fifth at 138. Buchanan is ranked fourth at 220, and Gomez is third at 285.
Fisher and Glass paces Goddard
At 113, Levi Glover (17-7) finished fifth. Jayden Miller (17-6) was also fifth at 120. Jacob Goodwin (16-6) earned third at 132. That included a consolation semifinal win versus Norton’s Kolton Field, a 3-2-1A two-time defending state champion.
Zachary Wessley (14-5) earned second at 145. In the finals, he lost, 4-2, to Emporia’s Xerarch Tungjaroenkul, who improved to 17-0 and is ranked first in 5A.
At 152, Jerrdon Fisher (16-1) won the championship. That included a 11-4 finals win against Rose Hill’s Keegan Beavers. That marked Beavers’ first loss this winter and dropped him to 22-1. Fisher finished 5-0 with two victories by fall and two others by technical fall.
At 195, Kaden Glass (17-3) finished second with a 3-1 loss to Olathe South’s Blake Jouret in the championship. Jouret is 19-0. Glass collected two wins by fall in a combined 58 seconds and a 9-3 victory.
For Goddard, Glover, a junior, is ranked second at 113. Senior Jayden Miller is fourth at 120. Wessley is fourth at 145. Fisher is ranked first at 152 at 5A, and Glass is first at 195.
Mendez earned Most Outstanding Wrestler; Barker also wins for Dodge City
Damian Mendez won the acclaimed Most Outstanding Wrestler honor. At 132, Mendez improved to 28-0 with a dominant run. He won two matches by fall, two by technical fall and a 9-1 finals win against Blue Valley Southwest’s Hayden Mills (26-3).
Last year, Mills finished 38-1 and earned second place at 126 in 5A.
At 170, Luke Barker (26-1) captured the championship. He won two matches by fall, an injury default, a 7-5 decision and a fall by 2:55 in the finals versus Maize’s Connor Padgett (25-4).
Mendez is ranked first at 132, and Barker is ranked first at 170.
Maize with several top finishes
At 132, Keton Patterson (27-5) finished fourth. Camden Padgett (22-9) earned sixth at 145. Cody Hughbanks (17-9) was sixth at 152. Jayden Ford (23-8) finished fifth at 160.
Connor Padgett (25-4) took second at 170. Before the loss to Luke Barker, Padgett won his four matches by fall in 1:48, a 13-3 major decision victory, a fall in 3:40 and a 12-5 major decision.
At 182, Ayden Flores (14-3) earned second. He took runner-up to Southeast of Saline’s Matthew Rodriguez, a Shrine Bowl football selection and two-time top-three finisher. Rodriguez is 14-0.
At 195, Ronan Wunsch (25-6) earned third.
For Maize, Camden Padgett is ranked third at 145. Junior Connor Padgett is ranked first in 5A at 170, and Flores is ranked first at 182.
Other top showings
For Blue Valley Southwest, Mills had its second-place finish. Brett Umentum (9-0) earned first at 160. He won his matches by fall in 1:22, 1:15, an 11-0 major decision and a fall in 1:47. He finished 37-3 and was a state runner-up last winter. At 285, Andrew Farrell (16-8) finished in second.
Mills and Umentum are ranked first at 132 and 160, respectively.
Three wrestlers finished with five pins: Lawrence Free State’s Tai Newhouse, Goddard’s Levi Glover and Garden City’s Alan Chairez. Newhouse had a total pin time of 3:59, Glover’s total time was 6:23 and Chairez’s time was 12:48.
Mendez, Barker, and Newton’s Rio Gomez led the field with 32 points. Umentum, Manhattan’s Easton Taylor and Goddard’s Fisher all tied for fifth with 31 points.
At 106, Valley Center sophomore Jett Schwartz defeated Washburn Rural’s Easton Broxterman, 12-7, in the championship match. Schwartz stands at 20-2, and Broxterman is 25-4.
At 126, Garden City’s Ryan Heiman captured the championship and improved to 18-2. Lawrence’s Kevin Honas earned second, and Washburn Rural’s Jacob Tangpricha, a former state champion, earned third.
At 138, Manhattan’s Easton Taylor picked up the crown over Andale’s Owen Eck, 7-1. Taylor is 26-3 in his senior year. Eck, a sophomore, stands at 24-2. Taylor is ranked first at 138. Eck is ranked second at 138.
Girls have first-ever Tournament of Champions
This marked the third year that girls’ wrestling has been sanctioned by KSHSAA. It marked the first time that girls had their own TOC competition. The teams had a dual format. Two-time state champion Washburn Rural captured the competition, followed by Emporia, Centennial (Colo.), Garden City, McPherson and Newton.
Washburn Rural beat Emporia, 42-24, McPherson 60-9, and Garden City, 48-21. In Round 4, Rural beat Newton, 60-9, followed by a 48-21 win versus Centennial.
In the 6/5A rankings, Wichita North is first, Washburn Rural second, followed by Derby, Dodge City, Great Bend and Emporia.
Dodge City girls roll at Hays Girls Prairie Classic
The 20-team Hays Girls Prairie Classic has emerged as one of the larger girls’ tournaments. Dodge City rolled to the championship with 165 points. Great Bend took second with 80 points, Hays High third with 59 points, Colby fourth with 53 and Russell fifth with 45.5 points.
For Dodge City, unranked Jessica Rivera was first at 101 with three wins by fall in 49 seconds, 1:31 and 1:04. At 126, Ariana De La Rosa took first, including a 3-1 win against Great Bend’s Daizy Gomez in the championship match.
At 170, Jolette Almaraz went 3-0 with wins at 56 seconds, 47 seconds and 5:04.
Dodge City had multiple second-place showings: Hailey Ramos at 132, Dayanara Garcia at 138, Valeria Hernandez at 143 and Ashley Arroyo at 155.
Dodge City girls has six ranked wrestlers. De La Rosa, Ramos and Almaraz are both ranked fourth. Garcia is ranked fifth at 138, and Arroyo is sixth at 155.
Six wrestlers with three pins; Russell duo continues to roll
Six wrestlers had three pins: Dodge City’s Rivera and Almaraz, Salina Central’s Lydia Dong, Great Bend’s Rosa Campos, Salina South’s Breanna Stone and Hays High’s Sarah Zimmerman. Two wrestlers paced with 24 points: Hays High’s Zimmerman and Dodge City’s Jolette Almaraz. Plus, two outstanding 3-2-1A wrestlers finished with big tournaments.
Zimmerman won by fall against Oakley’s Citori Bosserman in 5:43 in the first place match at 109. Bosserman is a defending 3-2-1A state champion.
Zimmerman is ranked first at 109 in 5/6A.
Russell freshman Tionna Napue delivered 23.5 points. Plus, Hoxie’s Marissa Porsch finished with 22 points. As well, Colby’s Kathie Chavez, Dodge City’s De La Rosa, Russell’s Jaden Ney and Goodland’s Destiny Gonzalez all had 22 points.
At 120, Napue went 3-0. She won by fall in 16 seconds, a technical fall victory and a fall in 3:07. Ney’s two wins both came in 32 seconds. Napue and Ney, both freshmen, are both now in the rankings. Napue is ranked sixth at 120 and Ney is fourth at 132.
Other champions included Great Bend’s Sierra Ferguson (143) and Colby’s Tessa Hill (191). Ferguson is fourth at 143 in 5/6A rankings.
Scott City wins own tournament; strong performances from Southwest Kansas wrestlers
Scott City boys won the 37th annual Scott City tournament for the second straight year. SC won with 239 points, and Goodland was second at 161. SC finished with three titlists: Colin McDaniel at 126, Zach Rohrbough at 145, and Kale Wheeler at 182. McDaniel was voted the Most Outstanding Wrestler and had the fastest pin by eight seconds.
Scott City is ranked tenth in 4A. McDaniel is ranked second at 126, and Rohrbough is third at 145, and Wheeler is ranked fifth at 182.
Kansas champions featured Holcomb’s Matthew Long (113), Goodland’s D.J. Knox (120), Wichita County’s Wyatt Gardner (138), Rawlins County’s Drew Withington (152), Goodland’s Mason Hernandez (160), Liberal’s Trystian Juarez (170), Wichita County’s Chandler Seaton (195), Goodland’s Dexter Dautel (220), and Goodland’s Caleb Duell (285).
On the girls’ side, Cimarron’s Veronica Greene won at 101/109. Holcomb’s Adriana Barajas won at 120/126. Hugoton’s Olivia Flores won at 138/143, and Cimarron’s Madison Newton captured the 155 championship.