Hillsboro?s wrestling team got first and third place finishes from its two returning state qualifiers, but it wasn?t enough to put the Trojans in top half of the nine-school pack at the Central Kansas League tournament Saturday at Hesston.
Senior Levi Mendoza won the 195-pound weight class and junior Travis King placed third at 135 pounds, but the Trojans, missing two athletes because of injury and illness, placed fifth with 39 team points.
Pratt won the team title with 165.5 points to easily outdistance second-place Smoky Valley with 121.5. Trailing them were Lyons (100.5), Hoisington (99), Hesston (46), Hillsboro (39), Nickerson (35), Halstead (31) and Larned (14).
?Levi and Travis both wrestled pretty well,? coach Scott O?Hare said. ?I?m very excited about how Levi has performed the last couple weeks, particularly with winning a CKL champion?ship in his senior season.?
Mendoza, who won all four of the matches he wrestled, will take a 30-7 season record into the regional tournament this weekend.
Meanwhile, King posted a 3-1 record in his weight class.
?Travis continues to look good overall, but is making some costly mistakes that better wrestlers are capitalizing on,? O?Hare said. ?He will have to clean up a few things this week in practice and could really make some noise next weekend at regionals.?
Also competing for Hillsboro were William Spaich, who went 1-4 at 120 pounds; Jaden Priest, 0-4 at 152; Lanning Flaming, 2-2 at 170 for fifth place; Franklin Jost, 1-4 at 182 for fifth; and Dawson Jost, 1-4 at 220 for fifth.
Coming?Hillsboro will make the short ride to Marion for its Class 3-2-1A regional tournament. Matches begin at 2 p.m. Friday and resume at 11 a.m. Saturday.
Also in the field are Burden Central, Caney Val?ley, Canton Galva, Cherokee-Southeast, Cherryvale, Chase County, Douglass, Erie, Eureka, Fredonia, Hal?stead, Herington, Hesston, West Elk, Humboldt, Blue?stem, Marion, Jayhawk Linn, Moundridge, Pleasan?ton, Flinthills, Uniontown, Remington and Wichita Independent.
?We have four practices this week to polish up in preparation for the regional tournament,? O?Hare said. ?Each wrestler has a mix of various things to improve on. Hopefully, each of them can remain healthy and continue the process of improving so that they can compete at their best next weekend.?