Gang of 5 earns trip to Salina
Basehor-Linwood wrestling coach Scott Neil would like to build a team that qualifies every varsity wrestler for state.
The Bobcats took a step toward that goal on Saturday in the Class 4A regional tournament at Spring Hill High School.
After qualifying just two wrestlers for state last season, the team is sending five wrestlers to the state tournament on Friday and Saturday at the Bicentennial Center in Salina.
In addition, every BLHS wrestler who participated in the tournament was competitive. The Bobcats had nine wrestlers competing in the second day of the tournament, and five qualified for state.
Mike Torrez qualified in the 103-pound weight class and was the tournament champion.
Symon Seaton placed second in the 125-pound weight class, losing to Derrick Weller of Piper in the finals.
Miles Brown placed fourth in the 130-pound weight class. Garret Kahle placed fourth in the 140-pound weight class. Joe Johnson placed fourth at 145 pounds.
Other wrestlers came up just short.
“I am disappointed that we didn’t get more through, but our kids have done well,” Neil said. “I asked them to go the extra effort to get pins, and they did that. That is part of why we are sitting in fifth place.”
Chandler King led 3-1 in his qualifying match, but got caught in a scramble and lost by pin. In the 112-pound weight class, Antonio Ferro lost a match that would have sent him to the state tournament. Tyler Simpson lost in the 119-pound weight class to a tough wrestler who had state experience.
The experience should give these wrestlers something to build on for next season from competing in a tough regional, Neil said.
“We thought we had six or seven wrestlers that were right there, but not all ended up qualifying,” he said. “That is the way it should be. It should not be easy to get through to state.”