Five Marion wrestlers make state tourney
Five Marion High School wrestlers qualified for the state tournament in Hays.
Brody Carroll won the Fredonia Regional championship at 152 pounds on Saturday. He pinned Reid Hugo of Cherryvale in the second round of the championship match. Carroll said an advantage in the match was his height and he tried to use his superior leverage to his advantage. Starting on bottom in the second round, he scored an early reversal before securing Hugo’s arm and leg for the pin.
It was a dominant tournament for Carroll who was ranked sixth in the state at the beginning of the tournament and now has a record of 41-2.
“It means I’m back on track,” Carroll said of the regional championship.
Marion head coach Chad Adkins agreed with Carroll that this was a bounce back tournament especially with the way Carroll wrestled.
“We dominate when he paces people,” Adkins said.
What Adkins means by pace is constantly being on the attack. Adkins said a huge part of the Marion wrestling philosophy is to be in the best shape possible and take advantage of a tired opponent in the third round of a match. Opponents can neutralize this advantage by consistently battling for wrist control with the two wrestlers standing face-to-face.
Adkins added that Carroll is unbeatable when he wrestles aggressively. Carroll said he will take that same aggressive approach in the three practices leading up to the state tournament. This is the third consecutive year Carroll has earned a regional championship, he placed third last year at state in the 138-pound class, and he has gone to state every year of his high school career. He said his expectation for this state trip is a championship.
“Every dog has their day,” Adkins said of wrestling at the state tournament. “Everybody is amped and some people wrestle better when they’re amped and some people wrestle worse.”
The other Warrior to wrestle in a regional championship match was Beretta Janzen at 113 pounds. Janzen was defeated 4-0 by two-time state champion Trey Francka of Chase County. Adkins was buoyed by this result, with Janzen nearly turning over Francka with both wrestlers battling on the mat in the third round.
“He took away his offense,” Adkins said of Janzen’s performance in the championship match.
Adkins also said that Janzen might provide the biggest obstacle in Francka way in the Chase County wrestler’s quest to record a three-peat at Hays.
Carroll lauded Janzen’s talent with sophomore wrestler making a second consecutive trip to the state tournament. Janzen is 21-8 this season.
“I’m going to be coming back a lot to watch him and his brother Adam,” Carroll said.
Adam Janzen also earned a trip to the state tournament with a fourth-place finish at 182 pounds. Janzen was pinned by Hunter Ackerman of Douglass in the third round of the third-place match. Adam Janzen led the match 4-1 in the third round before surrendering a near pin and then his arm to the Douglass grappler who took advantage of the opportunity with a pin. Adam Janzen is 26-11 this season.
Evan Slater won the third-place match for the second consecutive year at Fredonia at 220 pounds. Slater won by forfeit when Anthony Gonzalez of Fredonia decided not to wrestle. Slater lost a semifinal match 3-1 to Gus Farthing of Burlington.
“We just let it get away from us,” Adkins said of the match against Farthing.
Slater is now 37-7 this season.
The surprise placer for Marion was Eric Regnier, fourth at 126 pounds. Regnier pinned Joey Cunningham of Wellsville to earn a semifinal berth where he was defeated by Guy Kinder of Caney Valley. Regnier defeated Kaylee Grogan of Fredonia by pin before losing to DJ Cook of Cherryvale by pin in the third-place match.
Regnier now has a record of 19-25 this season. Although it has been an up and down season for Regnier going up to 126 pounds from 120 last year, he earned his second consecutive trip to the state tournament.
“Eric is a lot better than his record shows,” Carroll said.
Several other Marion wrestlers were close to making it to state with three other grapplers in the “blood” round with state berths on the line. Zach Lewman won two matches on Saturday before losing to Dusty Cook of Cherryvale by pin in the 170-pound class. Remmington Putter won two matches before losing 4-2 to third-place winner Taylor Welmarth of Wellsville in the 120-pound class. Brayden Putter won three matches before losing to Chuck Schmidt of Eureka, 9-4, at 126.
“I’m proud of Remington and Brayden,” Carroll said. “Brayden was injured all of last year.”