Erisman, Goleman KVL champs
Trevor Leahy's chances of earning a medal at the Kaw Valley wrestling meet Saturday in Bonner Springs hinged on how well he would do against an old nemesis.
Going into Saturday's meet, Leahy and his Mill Valley 119-pound foe, Brett Yates, slugged it out four times, with Yates coming out on top in three of those matches.
But the latest chapter of the rivalry was like no other, as Leahy made a statement going into this weekend's regionals with his third-place finish in the league.
"I wanted to win this one bad," he said. "The top three wrestlers get medals, and I wanted to win one of them."
Leahy knew that if he was going to take that medal home he would have to be prepared. The freshman responded with a technical falling of Yates 15-0.
"I knew he would come after me," he said. "So I had to step up my game. I teched him, so I'm pretty happy with that."
Leahy threw Yates to the mat early in the match, setting the tone. The remainder of the match was a series of stoppages as Yates had to receive medical treatment for several bloodied noses.
The match was finally called with about a minute left in the third period with Leahy ahead 15-0. "I guess I just got in his head," Leahy said.
De Soto wrestling coach Matt Jones was also pleased with the result of the match.
"He wanted this one bad," Jones said. "He was more physical and just physically dominated him."
Leahy wasn't the only Wildcat grappler who performed with all cylinders at the meet. Neil Erisman and Leif Goleman were back in form after time off.
Erisman moved his record to 19-1 as he mowed through his opposition on his way to the 152-pound championship. The sophomore wrestling phenom pinned Bonner Springs' Billy Ballard and Mill Valley's Earl Johansen before squeaking by second-ranked and previously undefeated Justin Wiscombe of Santa Fe Trail.
Erisman threw Wiscombe to the mat late in the first period, and that proved to be the difference in the 3-1 win in the 152 pound championship match.
After receiving a first round bye, Goleman needed just two wins to strike gold. He pinned Lansing's Brett Wessell in the semifinal and Mitch Ward of Santa Fe Trail in the finals.
Alex Mercer continued his winning ways by grappling his way into the finals at 215 pounds. Lansing's David Roper decisioned him 5-2 in the finals. Mercer earned his berth into the finals with an 8-6 decision over Aaron Adcox.
Adam Faircloth prepared himself for regionals with a third-place finish at 130 pounds. He pinned Basehor-Linwood's Dustin Weimer before losing to eventual champion Jess Buck of Bonner Springs in a 14-9 decision. Faircloth then pinned Tonganoxie's Brad Nickel and Mill Valley's Jared Pannell in the third-place match.
Brandon Hurt wrestled himself into the third-place match at 112 pounds before falling to Lansing's Brinton Thrasher 3-2.
Casey Johnson gave Piper's Jacob Greathouse all he could ask for in the third-place match at 160 pounds. Johnson lost the match 8-7 when Greathouse scored on a reversal with seconds left in the match.
The Wildcats scored 135.5 points on the day and finished fifth among nine teams.
Bonner Springs, which had five individual champions, came from behind, out-dual Lansing 174-162 for the championship. The Lions had three wrestlers win their respective weight classes.
Santa Fe Trail and Tonganoxie finished third and fourth with 160.5 and 146.5 points, respectively. Mill Valley, Basehor-Linwood, Piper and Perry-Lecompton finished in that order.
The Wildcats now travel to Hiawatha for regionals. Action begins Friday and concludes Saturday.
103 -- Billy Self lost to Justin Broadbent (MV), by fall; lost to Tyler Cordts (SFT), by fall. 112 -- Brandon Hurt defeated Chad Shore (Pip), by fall; lost to Zach Davis (BL), 4-2; defeated Travis Mulich (BS), by fall; lost to Brinton Thrasher (LHS), 3-2. 119 -- Trevor Leahy defeated Josh Cauthon (SFT), 4-1; lost to Cody Bell (BL), 11-3; defeated Hunter Samuels (THS), 13-0; defeated Brett Yates (MV), 15-0. 125 -- Jacob Rupe lost to Stewart Jones (LHS), by fall; lost to Kenny Calhoon (PL), 4-3. 130 -- Adam Faircloth defeated Dustin Weimer (BL), by fall; lost to Jess Buck (BS), 14-9; defeated Brad Nickel (THS), by fall; defeated Jared Pannell (MV), by fall. 140 -- Aaron Hansen lost to Dennis Kessler (LHS), by fall; lost to Mitch Lewis (BS), by fall. 145 -- Gene Cosby lost to Ross Starcher (THS), by fall; lost to Steven Beck (BS), by fall. 152 -- Neil Erisman defeated Billy Ballard (BS), by fall; defeated Earl Johansen (MV), by fall; defeated Justin Wiscombe (SFT), 3-1. 160 -- Casey Johnson defeated Robby Brigham (PL), 12-5; lost to Danny Gardner (BS), 13-11; defeated Marcus Day (SFT), 7-5; lost to Jacob Greathouse (Pip), 8-7. 171 -- Leif Goleman defeated Brett Wessell (LHS), by fall; defeated Mitch Ward (SFT), by fall. 189 -- Matt Below lost to Sean Blosser (PL), by fall; lost to Patrick Robitaille (SFT), 8-6. 215 -- Alex Mercer defeated Aaron Adcox (THS), 8-6; lost to David Roper (LHS), 5-2. 275 -- Bryan Roddy lost to Alan Bauerly (THS), by fall; lost to Daniel Shively (SFT), by fall.