The El Dorado wrestling team will send six wrestlers to the 4A state tournament after a successful regional meet in Chanute last weekend. The Wildcats finished with a team score of 117 and finished fifth in the team rankings, despite bringing only eight wrestlers.
“I was absolutely thrilled,” said El Dorado head coach Wes Reynolds.
“The kids wrestled the best they have all year. It was an overall great performance by all of them.”
Jett Roberts (113) joined the team after Christmas and had only wrestled in 13 matched prior to the regional tournament, but still managed to place fourth and qualify for state
William Gomez (120) also finished fourth in his bracket. After losing the opening match, Gomez won three straight matches to get to the third-place match, where he lost to Augusta’s Gabe Fox.
Jake Knowles (145) finished the day 3-1 and placed third. Knowles won the third place match over Trent Jones of Iola.
Kai Wernli (160) finished 3-0 to earn a regional championship. In the finals, Wernli and his opponent were tied with 14 seconds left, but he was able to get a takedown in the final seconds to finish undefeated.
Seth Hackler (170) finished 4-0 to earn a regional championship.
Braden Morgan (220) earned his third career regional championship. Last year, Morgan won the state title at 195, and will be the favorite next weekend in Salina.
“If he focuses on the little things and doesn’t overlook anybody, he should keep dominating like he has all year,” said Reynolds.
These six Wildcats will compete at the 4A state tournament at Tony’s Pizza Events Center in Salina on Feb. 22-23.