8 Marion wrestlers earn top-4 finishes at Classic

All eight Marion wrestlers competing at Hoisington’s Cardinal Classic Friday earned top-four finishes to lead to team to a fourth-place finish among 10 schools with 102 points.

Goddard Eisenhower won the title with 188 points, followed by Hoisington (161.5) and Beloit (159.5).

“I was very impressed with how the team did at Hoisington,” coach Tyler McMichael said. “They wrestled very tough, and it showed in our fourth-place finish.

“The increase in our practice room is starting to show in competition, and that is really exciting. We were able to wrestle a few teams that we don’t see very often, so that is always a plus. We got to see a few wrestlers that were ranked and see where we compare next to them.”

Two Warriors won their respective weight classes.

Sixth-ranked Charlie Nordquist (21-3) pinned his way to the 220-pound championship with a 4-0 record on the day. He won the championship by fall over Eisen­hower’s LJ Flax.

Fourth-ranked Jarret McLinden (23-6) pinned his three opponents, winning the 285-pound championship over Eisenhower’s Derek Yuza.

Third-ranked Tyler Palic (16-4) went 3-1 at 195 pounds to finish second. After a first-round bye, Palic won a match by injury default, then pinned his next two opponents. Palic lost an 8-5 decision in the championship to sixth-ranked and undefeated Nick Davenport of Ell-Saline.

Ethan Darnall (13-11) went 3-2 at 132 pounds to place third. After winning his first two matches by fall, Darnall lost his third-round match by fall. He then lost a 10-0 major decision before pinning Ellsworth’s Eryk Andalon in the third-place match.

Calib Mallory (11-13) went 2-2 at 138 pounds to finish third. He won his first match by fall, then received a bye. Mallory lost his next two matches by fall, including a loss to fifth-ranked Tanner Cassity from Hoisington. Mallory won the third-place match by an 8-5 decision over Ellsworth’s Morgan Kelley.

Three Warriors placed fourth in their respective weight classes: Will Alleven (3-12) went 1-3 at 113 pounds; Brock Mitchell (10-18) went 2-3 at 145 pounds; and Kyle Horton (11-18) went 2-3 at 152 pounds. Horton faced a pair of ranked wrestlers in top-ranked Christopher Ball of Hoisington and sixth-ranked Zane Colson of Beloit.

Coming—Marion will compete at Onaga Friday. Matches are scheduled to begin at 3:30 p.m.

“Moving forward, I think, comes down to making small tweaks and adjustments in the practice room and staying healthy for the next month,” McMichael said. “I see a lot of promise that we can have several state qualifiers, but the boys also have to see it to make it happen.”