Two members of the Hillsboro Wrestling Club advanced to the state championship match at USA Wrestling Kansas Kids State Tournament this weekend at the Topeka Expo?center.
Twin brothers Connor and Camden Padgett each reached the finals in the Age 8-and-under division, Conner in the 88-pound class and Camden at 73 pounds. Connor finished as the runner-up while Camden won his championship match.
He becomes the second state champion in as many years for the Hillsboro Wrestling Club, according to Scott O?Hare, lead coach and club director.
?Both of these boys have worked extremely hard,? he said. ?They both set a mid-season goal to become a kids state champion and have put in the time to get in a position to achieve that. We are very proud of both of them.?
Two other club members, eighth-grader Cyle Gautschi and freshman Nathan Sim?hiser, came up one match short of reaching medal contention. Levi Mendoza went 1-2 and Travis King 0-2.
District?Five wrestlers from the Hillsboro Wrestling Club placed among the top four in their respective brackets at the USA-Wrestling Kansas District III Tournament March 22 at McPherson.
Their finishes qualified them for the state championship tournament at Topeka.
Three wrestlers won their age and weight class. Cam?den Padgett (3-0) was first at 8-and-under, 73 pounds; Connor Padgett (3-0) won at 8-and-under, 88 pounds, and Cyle Gautschi (3-0) took first in 14-and-under, 165 pounds.
Placing fourth were Nathan Simhiser (3-1) at 14-and-under, 205 pounds, and Levi Mendosa (2-2) in the high school division, 182 pounds.
Two additional wrestlers, both in the high school division, placed fifth. One of them, Travis King (2-2), will compete in the state tournament as an alternate at 126 pounds.
Jesse Meier (2-2 plus a bye) placed fifth at 170, but will not compete at state.
Coach Scott O?Hare said he and his fellow coaches were proud of the boys for how they competed in the qualifying series tournaments.
?Even the wrestlers that have not advanced have shown improvement and never gave up,? he said. ?They continued to battle every match. This matches last year as the largest group we have taken to the kids state tournament. We are very excited to see how the boys complete in Topeka this weekend.?