Trojan wrestlers win MCAA title

The Hillsboro Trojans placed in every weight class they competed in Saturday to win the MCAA league wrestling title in Lyons.

Hillsboro wrestlers won four classes, finished second in two, third in four, and fourth in two.

This is the first time Hillsboro has won the league title on its own. Two years ago, Hillsboro and Marion won the title when they competed as a combined program.

The Trojans edged Hesston, 158 to 155, for first place. Nickerson was third with 131, Lyons fourth with 97, Haven fifth with 80 and Halstead sixth with 58.

“It was a total team effort,” coach Corey Burton said. “Everybody scored points for us and it took every point to get it done.”

The accomplishment was all the more significant because the Trojans were missing two key wrestlers.

Ronnie Davis, who would have been a prohibitive favorite at 215 pounds, injured his knee two weeks ago and is out for the season. Chuck Bina, a consistent performer at 160 pounds, was out Saturday with a strained neck and is doubtful for regionals.

The format for the league tournament was round-robin competition within each weight class. With six teams, that meant five rounds.

Outcome points were kept from round to round according to the nature of the win. Placement points were added at the end of competition. The first-place winner received 14 points, second-place 10 points, third-place seven points and fourth-place four points.

Winning their weight classes were Bri Ratzlaff with a 2-0 record at 103 pounds; Ryan Janzen who was unopposed at 119; Ryan Jilka who was 2-0 at 171; and Wade Sorensen who finished 1-1 at 189.

Taking second place were Danny Yoder, 2-1 at 130; and James Bina, 3-1 at 140.

Finishing third were John Sims, 0-2 at 125; Carson Greenhaw, 2-2 at 145; Adam Jilka, 2-2 at 152; and Cody Pankratz, 1-2 at 275.

Tim Glahn and Billy Weingarner finished fourth at 135 and 160, respectively.

Given the scoring system, the Trojans weren’t sure of the team outcome until the competition was completed.

“I told those guys they would all have to place in order to do it,” Burton said. “I knew it was going to be close. I just didn’t know how close.”

Regional tournament

Hillsboro High School will host one of the four regional wrestling tournaments for Class 3-2-1A on Friday and Saturday.

Eighteen teams have been assigned to the Hillsboro site. In addition to the Trojans, the teams will include Cheney, Cherryvale, Chase County, Eureka, Frontenac, Garden Plain, Halstead, Hesston, West Elk (Howard), Leon-Bluestem, Marion, Neodesha, Central Heights, Flinthills, Sedgwick, Remington and Wichita Independent.

“We have a number of kids who are going to be seeded in the top four and have a chance to qualify for the state tournament,” coach Corey Burton said.

The top four wrestlers in each weight class move on to state competition the next weekend in Hays.

“If we can get them qualified, we’ll have a good chance to bring home a team trophy,” Burton added. “They give trophies to the top two.”

Matches begin at 2 p.m. Friday at Brown Gymnasium. Action resumes at 11 a.m. Saturday. Burton expects the consolation and championship finals to start sometime mid- to late Saturday afternoon.

“We’d like to have fans show up and support us,” Burton said. “We look forward to hosting it. It should be a good little tournament. It should bring a lot of people to town.”

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