PHS wrestling took 5th out of 25 schools in the Bob Kuhn Classic at Hays over the weekend.

The Greenback Wrestling Squad went into the Bob Kuhn Prairie Classic in Hays for a State level feel.  With 25 teams over two days, the Greenbacks held their own, finishing 6th _ only 3.5 points behind the #1 in 3A, Hoisington.  The other teams above Pratt included the #5 in 6A, Garden City, the #7 in 6A, St. Thomas Aquinas and Haysville Campus who finished ½ point ahead of the Greenbacks. 

 The most important part of our two-day experience is that we showed growth and avenged earlier season losses across the board.  We have lots of work to do before Regionals, but we have made significant steps.

 106 lb. fr., Devon Weber, began the first day with a pin over Rymer of Campus.  He followed that up with a technical fall over Boxberger of Hoisington.  In the quarterfinal, Devon lost in ultimate to Zimmerman of Hays.  He marched on to day 2 with a 1-0 decision over Mya Kretzer of Mac, a 4-0 decision over Pauda of Ulysses and a sudden victory overtime loss to the #5 in 5A, Malachi Vann of Aquinas.  The 5th place match pitted Devon against Zimmerman of Hays again and this time, Devon won by fall, avenging the earlier loss, emphatically! Devon had an outstanding tournament and he is getting closer to where he needs to be by Regionals.  Devon was 5-2 for the tourney, 21-11 on the year, 5th place.

 113 lb. fr., Kaiser Pelland, started off looking solid with a 7-2 decision over Jackson of Riley County.  In the quarters, Kaiser ran into the #4 in 6A, Kia Rhea of Campus, losing 17-3.  Kaiser came right back on day two, pinning White of Phillipsburg and Leninger of Hugoton.  In the consolation semifinals, Kaiser matched up with the #2 in 5A, Drew Liles of Great Bend, losing by fall.  Kaiser finished his tournament on a high note by avenging an earlier season loss to Pauda of Ulysses by a 9-4 decision.  Kaiser made giant steps in Hays and beat two Regional opponents.  Kaiser was 4-2 for the tourney, 14-11 on the year, 5th place.

 120 lb. fr., Zach Lamatsch, once again stepped up filling a varsity spot and had a respectable tournament. 

 132 lb. jr, Cody James was able to score team points and Cody is improving every time out.  We have one of the toughest 4A schedules in the state, so there are no easy goes—we go against top competition every week and Cody was able to get a pin for the team.

 138 lb. fr., Bryce Winsor, was also able to get a win for the team over O’Donnell of Kapaun in overtime. Bryce will need to get his record to .500 so he won’t see the #2 in 3A first round like he did in Hays.  That is not an easy draw!  

145 lb. jr., Kadence Riner, walked through to the finals with 3 pins in the first period and Kadence looked solid.  He continued that theme with a solid takedown against Medina of Garden City in the championship match.  Kadence owned the lead for the entire match, but he made one mistake at the end, which cost him the championship as time ran out.  The way we look at things is that this is the time to learn so that we can avoid those things as we get into post season.  Kadence is an experienced wrestler and he let that loss go as soon as it was over because it has little bearing on the rest of his season.  Kadence looked sharp the whole tournament, with a record of 3-1 for the tourney, 24-3 on the year, 2nd place. 

 160 lb. jr., Jadon Koehler, won three matches on the first day by fall over Rooney of Spring Hill, 4-0 over Munson of Salina Central and 12-5 over Rains of Oakley.  This set up a final matchup against an opponent from earlier in the year, the #3 in 3A, Joshua Ball of Hoisington.  Jadon controlled the whole match, winning the championship with a 5-0 decision over Ball.  Jadon is really coming into his own the last several weeks and with a few adjustments, he could have a very interesting post season. Jadon had an impressive outing, going 4-0 for the tourney and 22-6 on the year, 1st place.

 170 lb. jr., Caden Blankenship has struggled a bit, trying to get back in synch after a long Christmas layoff.  Caden went 2-2 in Hays, beating Bishop of Salina Central 1-0, and with a win over Nollette of Oakley.  Caden will need to narrow his focus over the next several weeks to get back on track.  We have a plan for him and he will get there.  Caden is 15-10 on the year. 

 182 lb. sr., Justin Lamatsch, began day one with a fall over East of Larned to set up a quarterfinal with the #3 in 3A, Wyatt Pedigo of Hosington.  Pedigo won 14-6 as Justin attempted to close in on him at the end of the match.  Justin followed up on day two with a win by fall over Thompson of Mac and Carrol of Aquinas.  This set up a consolation semifinal against Rains of Oakley, which Justin also won by fall.  In the 3rd place match, Justin matched up with the #1 in 3A who had lost against Pedigo in the semifinals.  Justin kept it close, losing 7-3 and looking good in the process.  Justin had a great tournament, going 4-2 for the tourney, 22-8 on the year, 4th place.  

195 lb. fr., Hunter Huber, began day one with a pin over Conger of Hays and a sudden victory win over McCoy of Riley County, 6-4.  Hunter joined Jadon and Kadence in the semifinals, facing the #2 in 5A, Anthony Gaona of Aquinas, losing by fall.  Hunter bounced back on day two, with a 5-2 decision over Aumiller of Trego to set up a 3rd place match with Yarborough of Mac.  Hunter lost by a 5-1 decision.  Hunter did lots of good things during this tournament and he is inching closer to where he needs to be by Regionals. Hunter ended his tournament with a 3-2 record, 18-12 on the season, 4th place.  

220 lb. jr., Sevren Hance, won by fall over Kramer of Larned to set up a quarterfinal against the #4 in 4A, Trey Van Pelt of Hays.  Sevren gave Trey all he wanted and more, needing just a few more seconds to finish his takedown for the win, but Sevren came up just short, losing in a 7-6 decision where Sevren was in on the takedown as time ran out.  Sevren began day 2 with a convincing fall over Briggs of Buhler.  Sevren followed that pin up with a loss in the blood round, just missing out on a top 6 placing, losing to Kampe of Campus, 15-7.   Sevren made steps forward during the tourney with his highlight match versus Van Pelt of Hays, who ended up in 3rd place.  Sevren went 2-2 for the tourney, and he is 17-12 on the year.

 With two 5th place finishers, two 4th place finishers, a 2nd and a champion, the Greenbacks made their mark on the two-day tournament.  The boys passed many milestones and are beginning to turn the corner.  There will be one more big test before League as the Greenbacks head to Andover this Saturday, January 27th at 9am. Go Greenbacks!