The Hillsboro wrestling team placed sixth out of 14 schools competing Saturday at the Charles McMillen Invitational in Herington.
The Trojans finished with 80 team points to finish behind Abilene (200), Jefferson West (122), Chapman (120.5), Onaga (84) and Wamego (82).
Leading the way for Hillsboro was Tanner Jones, who won the 170-pound weight class with a 3-0 record.
“By staying in good position, keeping his composure, and staying patient against a quality opponent, Tanner saved his best attack of the tournament by securing a single leg and finish for a takedown in overtime to secure the tournament championship,” coach Scott O’Hare said.
“In the past, Tanner has gotten easily frustrated by strong opponents as they defended off his attacks, and he would eventually get impatient, making attempts out of desperation. In his finals match, he learned that he could still score on those guys. He just has to capitalize when the opportunity presents itself.”
Close behind Jones was fellow senior Tyrell Thiessen, who finished second at 275 with a 2-1 record.
“After a very exciting semifinals win, Tyrell suffered what I might consider one of the most difficult losses I have seen from one of our wrestlers,” O’Hare said. “Tyrell was on the losing end of a 7-4 decision in a match that he seemingly dominated the entire time.
“Some unfortunate circumstances cost him the match, in which his opponent only earned two of his seven match points. The rest of his scoring was on penalty points. We will just chalk this up as a valuable learning experience for Tyrell.”
Also finishing in the top four for Hillsboro were freshman Austin Cross, who went 3-1 to finish third at 145 pounds, and junior Preston Nelson, who finished third with a 4-1 record at 152 pounds.
“Although he was battling a fever and not feeling well for much of the day, Austin put in another solid performance,” O’Hare said. “Although he suffered a tough loss in the semifinals by fall, it was actually a very tightly contested match up to that point. He came back from the loss with a gutsy performance to place third.
“With the exception of a costly mistake in his second round match, Preston put in his most solid performance of the season, dominating in his other four matches of the day, winning all by fall.”
Also competing for Hillsboro were: Jon Carey, who went 0-2 at 120 pounds in his first competition since injuring his knee; Jesse Meier, 0-2 at 160; Levi Mendosa, 1-2 at 182; and Zac Ghahremanzadeh, who went 0-2 at 195.
“Overall, I was pleased with how the guys competed,” O’Hare said. “We still have an awful lot to learn, work on and improve on, but these guys are showing a willingness to do just that. It seems they are beginning to trust what we are trying to show them, and recognizing that it works.”
Coming—The Trojan will compete this weekend at the Halstead Invitational. Matches begin 4 p.m. Friday and resume Saturday at 9:30 a.m. The field includes 22 schools.