MAIZE SOUTH—In their last match before the highly anticipated Newton tournament, the Maize South High School wrestlers beat Goddard in a dual Thursday, Jan. 10.
The result marked a victory over a league foe. Both schools are part of the Ark Valley Chisholm Trail League’s Division II.
That confidence showed early Thursday. Maize South led 11-0 before Goddard picked up its first win. Dakota Leach beat Maize South’s Jesse Bashor by major decision (12-0) in the 120-pound class.
Three Maverick wrestlers – Reagan Nguyen (126 pounds), Kevin Kissane (132) and Jared Hydock (138) – pinned their opponents and built a 29-4 Maize South advantage that proved to be insurmountable.
Goddard answered with three wins in a row, thanks to Christian Frame (145), Brett Woodruff (152) and Dakota Driskill (160). The Lions’ streak moved the score to 29-19, but Maize South’s Shelton Robison stopped the surge by pinning John Vap in the first period of the 170-pound match. Maize South went on to win 47-23 at home.
“This year we have made big steps,” said Kerr, who added that his wrestlers showed they could “hang with the big boys.”
The Mavericks’ lone returning state placer, senior Jaysten McClure, has not wrestled this season but will be eligible to return to action Jan. 21. The team initially seemed worried about McClure’s absence, Kerr said, but the boys started believing and that feeling was contagious.
“Every single person’s pulled their weight,” Kerr continued.
Kerr described the competition at Newton – which starts Friday, Jan. 11 – as the toughest tournament of the season. He explained that he would be less concerned about wins and losses and instead would focus on how each wrestler performed in every period this weekend.
“I’m ready to see how we do with the competition,” Kerr remarked.
The Newton tournament will include the No. 1 teams in Class 6A, 5A and 4A, based on Kansas Wrestling Coaches Association rankings. The tournament will conclude Saturday, Jan. 12.