Wrestlers wrap up regular season
Hillsboro 4th, Marion 5th at Hoisington
The state’s high school wrestling season would be two weeks away from wrapping up the regular season under normal circumstances, with the final tournament set the last weekend in February.
But it’s not a normal year, as Covid-19 creates a longer, tougher road for wrestlers to make it to state.
This year, the road to Hays runs through district, regional, and a sub-state meets to allow for safety precautions and crowd reduction.
The regular season wrapped up Friday for the Hillsboro and Marion High School wrestling teams that competed at the perennially brutal Hoisington Cardinal Class tournament.
Hillsboro finished fourth out of seven schools with 82 points while Marion was fifth with 70 points.
The hosting Cardinals were the tournament’s winner, beating runner-up Beloit, 207-148.5.
Fifth place was the lowest a competitor from either school finished on the productive day with Marion bringing home two gold medals and Hillsboro winning one.
Marion’s Todd Palic took first at 195-pounds and Trevor Schafers won gold for 220.
Tristan Rathbone won the day for Hillsboro at 152 pounds.
The Trojans also reeled in a pair of silver medals with Lyle Fickes in 138-pound’s second class, and Austin Rempel at 195.
Rempel had one of the best days for Hillsboro, taking down Beloit’s third-ranked Braden Burks, and Ellsworth’s fifth-ranked Tyler Romero, with his sole blemish being a loss to second-ranked Palic.
Hillsboro netted a trio of third-place finishes with Anthony Fickes at 113 pounds, Garrett Helmer at 138, and 145-pound Ryder Norstrom.
Marion got two of its own with 120-pound Forest Slater and Chance Shults at 138.
Both Marion and Hillsboro posted a pair of fourth-place finishers with Marion’s Caleb Darrow and Jack Lanning, and Hillsboro’s Charlie Major and Isaiah Patton.
The 120-pound Gavin Regier rounded out the competition for Marion, taking fifth, while Dallas Whorton and Deon Weeks were at 138 and 220 pounds.
Hillsboro takes its first step qualifying for state Saturday, competing in the Cheney District 4 meet while Marion heads to Douglass’ fifth district.