Twelve Junction City High School wrestlers walked into the gym at Washburn Rural last weekend with hopes of competing at the Class 6A State Wrestling Tournament this weekend in Park City. Nine finished inside the top-8 in their respective weight classes clipping their ticket while two Blue Jays and countless other competitors around the state ended their season.

Of the nine moving on with their season, senior Zane Thornton finished the highest with a third place medal in the 132-pound class.

Thornton started the day with pinfall victory over Haysville-Campus freshman Montana England in the second period. In the quarterfinals, Thornton defeated Steven Sellers, Garden City, via 8-4 decision.

Thornton jumped out quickly with a takedown 25-seconds into the match. Sellers responded with an escape 11-seconds later.

The two moved around the mat for dominancy before Sellers earned two points from a takedown with 41-seconds remaining in the opening period. Thornton was able to work a reversal in as time expired to grab the 4-3 lead in the match.

Sellers began the second period from the bottom position where he was able to escape.

Thornton placed Sellers onto his back with jut over a minuted left to extend his lead to 6-4 as the two headed into the final period.

Thornton began the final 2-minute period from the bottom where he was able to work a reversal in for the final points of the match 23-seconds in. Thornton was unable to maneuver Sellers into a pin, but the points earned was enough to move him forward in the bracket.

Thornton’s lone loss of the day happened in the semi finals against the eventual class winner Lou Fincher, Lawrence Free State. Fincher earned the 5-4 decision after limiting Thornton’s ability to score in the second and third periods.

Thornton defeated Manhattan’s Tucker Brunner via 5-4 decision to move to the third place match where he defeated Sellers in a rematch from the first day. With the placing, Thornton will face Blue Valley West senior David O’Brien in the first round of the Class 6A Tournament Friday.

Freshman Zach Petrusky finished the 106-pound class 2-2 to finish fourth overall. He opened the day against Liberal’s Damian Duran earning the pinfall victory with 22-seconds remaining in the opening period. In the quarterfinal round, Petrusky defeated Juan Castro, Dodge City, 2-0 before falling to the class runner-up Jacob Tangpricha, Topeka Washburn Rural, via 7-2 decision.

On day two, Petrusky opened up against Manhattan’s Jantzen Borge. After taking the 2-0 lead in the first period, Petrusky added five points with a reversal and a three point nearfall to extend his control of the match. A reversal with 40-seconds remaining in the final period gave Petrusky the 9-2 decision victory advancing him to the third place match.

There, Petrusky was pinned by Lawrence Free State freshman Nolan Bradley.

With the fourth place finish, Petrusky qualified for the state tournament and will square off against J.C. Harmon freshman Raymond Ladd in the opening round Friday.

Freshman Patrick Foxworth started his tournament in the 120-pound weight class with a victory via disqualification for misconduct. Foxworth controlled the match, 5-0, before the wrestler from Wichita West was charged with the penalty with 7-seconds left in the second period. Foxworth was awarded one point before moving on to the next round. There he faced eventual class champion Easton Taylor, Manhattan. Taylor handed Foxworth his first loss on the tournament via 11-3 major decision.

In the consolation rounds, Foxworth earned a 8-0 major decision over Ismael Ramirez, Dodge City, before pinning Elissio Martinez, Haysville-Campus, in the third period. The freshman advanced to the third place match after earning the 12-1 major decision over Derby’s Tate Rusher.

Foxworth loss to Lawrence’s Kevin Honas, via 8-4 decision to qualify for state. There he will open the event against Mill Valley senior Cole Moberly.

Senior Cameron Beasley defeated a pair of Lawrence wrestlers to move to the semifinals before falling to the consolation rounds to finish fourth.

Beasley opened the competition against Lawrence’s William Maas. The senior pinned his opponent in the first period to face Lawrence Free State’s Caleb Streeter, where he won via 10-3 decision. The two would meet again in the third place match with Streeter taking the 6-4 win. After defeating Streeter in the quarterfinal round, Beasley squared off against class runner up Xavier Sisco, Derby, falling via pin with 19-seconds remaining in the first period.

Beasley defeated Rudy Hernandez, Dodge City, with a pin in the third period before facing Streeter again.

Junior Chris Owens opened his fifth place trip through the regionals against Jeremiah Eustaquio, Manhattan, with a pin victory in the second period before falling to the class runner up via first period pin. In the consolation rounds, Owens pinned Alan Chairez, Garden City, in the second period before Topeka’s Elijah Barron took him the distance. Owens moved on with the 2-1 decision to face Dodge City’s Ryan Parga in the consolation semifinals. 

Para bested Owens with a 16-5 major decision dropping the junior to the fifth place match where he defeated Haysville-Campus’ sophomore Aidan Williams with a pin in the second round.

Junior CJ Neuman closed out his state bid sixth in the 152-pound class. Newman defeated Topeka’s Matthew Catchall 8-2, before falling to Nathan Bowen, Haysville-Campus, 7-2 in the quarterfinals. After the loss, Neuman defeated Liberal’s Jose Beltran with a pin in the second period and won by forfeit over Topeka Washburn Rural’s Austin Fager. Neuman fell to Manhattan’s Daron Island-Jones in the consolation semi’s before falling to Bowen, 5-0, in a rematch for fifth place. 

Junior James Hancock, 170-pounds, defeated Austin Burenheide, Lawrence Free State, with a pin in the first period to take seventh place in the heart-breaker round to advance to state. Hancock defeated Wichita Southeast’s Tanner Minette with a pin before falling to class runner up Alaxavier Rodriguez, Garden City, via pin in the second period. In the consolation rounds, Hancock defeated Hutchinson’s Mason Weathers via pin before being pinned by Dodge City’s Ruben Rayas.

Sophomore Ashton Schreiner, 126-pounds, fell to Derby’s Troy Allen in the seventh place match to close out the weekend eighth. Schreiner dropped his first match to Jacob Rymer, Haysville-Campus, before winning his next match in the consolation rounds. Schreiner dropped his second match to Wichita South’s Kyle Niblet via 10-7 decision.

Junior Isaiah Zinkan closed out the 195-pound class eighth after falling to Wichita Heights’ Justin Meiers in the seventh place match. Zinkan started the weekend off with a 7-2 decision victory over Barrett Roads, Haysville-Campus, before falling to Derby’s Tyler Allen via pin. Zinkan defeated Hutchinson’s Dorian Hippon via pinfall in the first period before falling to Josh Bertholf, Dodge City, via 10-0 major decision to the seventh place match.

Ending their season in the regional were Judah Peterson, 220-pounds, and Gavin Lujan, 160-pounds and Alex DeGuzman, 145-pounds.

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