All told, 26 wrestlers from the Daily News coverage area qualified for the upcoming state wrestling tournament in Columbia with their performances Friday and Saturday in their respective district tournaments.
Seneca qualified 10 wrestlers and won Class 1, District 2 with 205.5 points (second place Buffalo had 133), Neosho qualified eight and won its 11th straight district crown, and McDonald County and Diamond each qualified four.
CLASS 3, DISTRICT 3
The Neosho Wildcats finished with 213 points and Carthage came in second at 157.5.
Neosho's qualifiers are Cayden Auch (106 pounds), Kolton Sanders (113), Trenton Young (132), Braxton Barnes (138), Drayke Perry (170), Joey Williams (182), Zane Persinger (220), and Adrian Hitchcock (285). Young, Perry, Williams, Persinger, and Hitchcock each won district titles, Auch and Barnes each finished second, and Sanders finished third.
Young won a 3-0 decision over Republic's Jonathan O'Connell for the district title, an opponent Young defeated for a conference title earlier this season. Young pinned Willard's Ryder Heimbach in 41 seconds, Branson's Austin Hadaller in 27 seconds, and Carl Junction's Holden Hughes in 2:36 en route to a 45-8 overall record.
Perry won by injury default against Carthage's Ymbar Polanco in the finals. Before that, Perry pinned Camdenton's Angelo Alfano in 1:59 and Hillcrest's Steven Brown in 2:53, and won a 6-1 semifinal decision against Carl Junction's Kobe Maxwell. Perry improved to 37-13.
Williams, like Young against O'Connell, defeated Carthage's Dillon Lancaster for both district and conference titles, a 13-2 major decision Saturday. Williams, who improved to 47-3 overall, pinned Republic's John Hickman in 41 seconds, McDonald County's Wilson Menas in 1:06, and Webb City's Jonny Goggins in 51 seconds in his other matches.
Persinger pinned Marshfield's Travin Plemmons in 5:40 for a district title, his third pin of the tournament and it brought him his first district title. Persinger also pinned McDonald County's McCoy Ikosia in 42 seconds and Webb City's Matt Miller in 1:37. Persinger improved to 34-13 overall.
Hitchcock defeated Carl Junction's Zeke Wall for the second year in a row in the district title match, this one coming on a 8-3 decision. Hitchcock also pinned Glendale's Thonan Rabourn in 47 seconds and Carthage's Brener Ocana in 31 seconds, ultimately improving to 47-2 during his senior season.
Auch and Rolla's Anthony Sederburg wrestled a title match the caliber of one pitting individuals a combined 94-4 this season, Sederburg victorious 5-4 on Saturday. Auch earned three wins by pin earlier in the tourney, Republic's Wyatt George in 1:24, Glendale's Cole Tedford in 22 seconds, and Willard's Christian Finley in 32 seconds.
Barnes lost a 4-2 sudden victory to Rolla's Coleman Brainard, another finals match pitting wrestlers with over 40 wins on the season. Barnes improved to 43-6 and Brainard 44-4 after districts. Barnes pinned Hillcrest's Daytona Berg in 3:16 and Camdenton's Gabe Blain in 2:55 in his other two matches.
Sanders was the lone Neosho wrestler to make it out of the back side of the bracket and his big win came on a 7-0 decision against Helias Catholic's Aleksey Salaz in the consolation semis. After that, Sanders defeated Willard's Riley Wertz on a 8-6 sudden victory for third. Sanders lost a 7-0 decision to Rolla's unbeaten Nathan Pulliam and he pinned Parkview's Ethan Fulfer in 46 seconds and Branson's Christian Cartright in 2:34 in his other matches.
McDonald County finished eighth overall with 81.5 points and qualifiers Oscar Ortiz (113), Jakob Gerow (120), Jack Teague (145), and Timber Teague (170).
Ortiz lost a 2-0 decision to Pulliam in the finals. Before that, however, Ortiz pinned Glendale's Kyle Justice in 1:25, won a 14-3 major against Carthage's Tanner Russow, and won a 3-2 semifinal decision against Willard's Wertz. Ortiz moved to 38-5 on the season.
Gerow lost a 5-3 decision in the finals against Helias Catholic's Evan Winder, but before that, Gerow pinned Rolla's Collin Woods in 1:30, won a 10-2 major against Camdenton's Connor Morgan, and pinned Webb City's Josh Copher in 1:03 en route to the finals. Gerow improved to 41-4 overall.
Both of the Teagues won their critical consolation semi matches, Jack Teague with a 17-3 major decision against Marshfield's Will Snider and Timber Teague with a 44-second pin of Rolla's Jacob Phillips.
Timber Teague won third after Marshfield's Jordon Irwin medically forfeited.
Jack Teague and Timber Teague own 32-18 and 27-17 records, respectively.
Team scores: Neosho 213, Carthage 157.5, Rolla 147, Helias Catholic 134, Marshfield 105, Carl Junction 92, Willard 84.5, McDonald County 81.5, Webb City 72, Republic 64, Branson 50.5, Camdenton 26, Glendale 18, Parkview 16, Hillcrest 14.
CLASS 1, DISTRICT 2
The Seneca Indians earned their district title behind 10 qualifiers: Levi Connelly first at 106, Cole Whitehead fourth at 113, Grant Smith fourth at 120, Max Roark third at 132, Dalton Hembree first at 138, Dayton Fields second at 152, Cole Hatfield fourth at 160, Jordan Ishimura second at 170, Kale Schrader second at 195, and Grant Durman third at 285.
Hembree pinned his way through four opponents en route to a district title and a 41-3 overall record. Hembree pinned Warsaw's Jayden Schepker in 1:03 in the finals and before that, it was Buffalo's Keaton Rackley in 3:11, Father Tolton's Audrey Hebert in 19 seconds, and North Callaway's John Allen in 18 seconds.
After byes, Connelly only wrestled two matches to earn a district title, with a 15-0 tech fall over Knob Noster's Sam Wilheim in the finals. Connelly pinned Buffalo's Conner Pinkley in 55 seconds in the semis. Connelly improved to 44-6 overall.
Father Tolton's Brock Mauller has been a thorn in the side of Seneca wrestlers throughout his career and he continued that on Saturday when he pinned Fields in 40 seconds in the 152 title match. Otherwise, it was Fields who did the pinning en route to the finals, taking down El Dorado Springs' Dakota Long in 4:29, Tipton's Trevan Isaacs in 1:41, and Blair Oaks' Kyler Griep in 3:10. All told, Fields improved to 45-4 on the season.
Ishimura defeated first Holden's Peyton Seiz on a 4-0 decision and then Butler's Bryce Ackerman 7-1 to reach the finals, where he lost to Buffalo's Floyd Miller, who improved to 53-2 overall with a 40-second pin of Ishimura. Ishimura improved to 19-4.
Schrader just missed on a district title, losing a 4-3 decision to Knob Noster's Kodie Bellury, in a match that lived up to wrestlers with 45-3 (Bellury) and 46-3 (Schrader) records, respectively, and who will likely meet again at state. Schrader recorded three wins by pin en route to his clash with Bellury, Sherwood's Jake Hughes in 1:29, Diamond's Owen Gray in 2:57, and Versailles' Riley Rademann in 57 seconds.
Consolation semifinal matches are vital at district, and Seneca wrestlers finished 5-3 in those matches Saturday. For example, if the Indians had won all eight consolation semifinal matches, they would have qualified all 13 for state rather than 10.
Roark lost a 11-6 decision to North Callaway's Jadon Henry in the semis, but rebounded with a 7-1 consolation semi win over Blair Oaks' Addison Canale and then pinned Knob Noster's Brodie Payne in 2:42 for third.
Durman answered the bell after being pinned by Diamond's Justin McGough in 20 seconds flat in the semis. Durman turned around to pin Buffalo's Levi Kenady in 4:32 in the consolation semis, earning a state trip. Seneca's heavyweight closed it out with a 10-3 decision over Adrian's Andrew Forgette to claim third. Durman pinned his first two opponents, Versailles' Damian Murray in 40 seconds and Forgette in 5:18.
Whitehead beat Butler's Jacob Smith on a 14-2 major decision in the consolation semis and placed fourth after Diamond's Triston Kralicek pinned Whitehead in 17 seconds. Whitehead pinned Smith in 1:21 earlier in the tournament and won a 14-10 decision against Buffalo's Lizzie Miller.
Smith had a long road back to state qualification on the back side of the 120 bracket, after being pinned by Fatima's Kagan Froning in 1:03 in the first round. Smith won three straight matches, including a 11-9 decision against Butler's Justice Carpenter in the consolation semis. Smith pinned Adrian's Ryen Glaser in 4:01 and Knob Noster's Logan Hernandez in 51 seconds earlier in the comeback trail.
Hatfield won a 7-1 decision against Butler's Jaden Heckadon to punch his state ticket, that consolation semifinal win bracketed by two losses, 4-1 to Holden's Andrew Martin and 4-3 to North Callaway's Chad Maupin. Earlier, Hatifled pinned Tipton's Christopher Corley in 51 seconds and Blair Oaks' Eddie Wells in 4:54.
Diamond finished sixth in the team standings and the Wildcats have four qualifiers, Justin McGough second at 285, Kralicek third at 113, Austin Behler third at 120, and Jacob McGough fourth at 220.
Justin McGough pinned Holden's Zack Kelley in 38 seconds and Durman in 20 seconds en route to the finals, not preparation for the finals match against Warsaw's Nathaniel Fauquier. Fauquier defeated McGough on a 6-3 tie breaker. McGough improved to 40-13 overall.
Fatima's Lucas Laux pinned Kralicek in 1:10 in the semis, then Kralicek won a 7-3 consolation semi decision against Buffalo's Lizzie Miller and then pinned Seneca's Whitehead in 17 seconds for third. On Friday, Kralicek pinned Sherwood's Brandon Van in 1:20 and Father Tolton's Paul Wilson in 3:30.
Behler was pinned by Father Tolton's Teague Travis in 1:40 in the semis, but, like teammate Kralicek, Behler rebounded in a big way in the consolation semi and third place matches. Behler won a 14-1 major against Fatima's Kagan Froning in the consolation semis and then won a 18-3 tech fall against Seneca's Grant Smith for third. On Friday, Behler pinned Buffalo's Tyler Parnosky in 45 seconds and Knob Noster's Logan Hernandez in 4:48.
Jacob McGough pinned Seneca's Garret Babbitt in 2:52 in the consolation semis to earn a spot at state. This win came between two losses, as McGough was pinned by Buffalo's Colten Kenady in 3:43 in the semis and by North Callaway's Jordan Delashmutt in 2:55 for third.
Team scores: Seneca 205.5, Buffalo 133, Knob Noster 131.5, Father Tolton 124, Holden 99.5, Diamond 94.5, Warsaw 86.5, Blair Oaks 80, North Callaway 73, Adrian 70, Versailles 61, Butler 48.5, El Dorado Springs 45, Fatima 43, Tipton 23, Sherwood 15.