Bobcat Classic wrestling tourney opens Friday
On the Kansas Wresting Coaches Association Web site, which is dedicated to keeping high school wrestling fans abreast of the news, a simple poll question is asked: In your opinion, which Kansas tournament is the toughest?
The tournaments listed are Basehor-Linwood, Beloit, Colby, Derby, Eudora, Garden City, Gardner, Liberal, Newton, Rose Hill and Valley Center.
As of Wednesday morning, the Bobcats rank third on the list behind Garden City and Beloit with less than 50 votes separating the three.
In politics this would be cause for a recount, but high school wrestling debates like these never have to end as proponents and fans of a specific tournament never stop bragging about the competition they see on the mat.
While Internet polls can be completely unscientific and skewed by a visitor with a clever browser, there is little doubt that Basehor-Linwood’s Bobcat Classic, which is in its ninth year, ranks among the tops in high school competition.
The field is filled with ranked teams and wrestlers. State champions will wrestle in the tournament that kicks off at noon Friday and continues on Saturday in the BLHS gymnasium.
When the tournament begins, one area wrestler with the best chance to medal is Symon Seaton of Basehor-Linwood. He is currently ranked No. 1 in the 125-pound division in Class 4A. He could potentially face Derek Weller of Piper in the title match. Weller is No. 2 ranked in the state of Kansas. The two have wrestled one another frequently, including earlier this season at the Kaw Valley League duals where Seaton prevailed in overtime.
In addition to Basehor-Linwood and Piper, this year’s field includes ACCHS (Effingham), Andale, Blue Valley, Bonner Springs, Chapman, Columbus, Eudora, Fort Scott, Garden City, Glenwood, Goddard, Harmon, Junction City, Lansing, Lawrence Free State, Olathe North, Paola, Piper, Pittsburg, Rossville, Santa Fe Trail, Shawnee Mission East, Silver Lake, Staley, Olathe South, Tonganoxie, Topeka-Seaman, St. James Academy, St. Thomas Aquinas and Turner.
Wrestling action begins at noon Friday with the first round of the tournament. Seven rounds of wrestling will take place on Saturday, concluding with the semifinal round and consolation third round.
Wrestling action will begin again at 10 a.m. Saturday. Tournament finals will take place at 5 p.m.