CHAPMAN – The Abilene Cowboys finished the regular season with a 54-28 dual win over rival Chapman Thursday night in the District Gym in Chapman.
The Cowboys finished the regular season with a 3-2 mark in the NCKL. Both losses, Concordia and Clay Center, were by one or two points. Concordia defeated Clay Center Thursday night to earn the NCKL championship.
At Chapman, the Cowboys received a healthy boost from the Irish, as four of the first five matches were forfeits due to lack of an opponent. Abilene received 24 team points to open the match.
“I was kind of a short dual,” Abilene head coach James Stout said. “We didn’t match up real well as far as getting the maximum number of matches in. It made a short night of it. Where we did wrestle, I think we wrestled fairly well.”
“There were a lot of good things tonight for us,” Chapman head coach Zach Lucas said. “A couple of our guys that have struggled throughout the year got a couple of good pins and points. But it is always hard giving up those early open weights.”
On the mat at 120, the Cowboys’ Kaleb Stroda won by fall over Chapman’s Chris Lasluisa. Abilene led 30-0 after five weight classes.
Abilene sophomore Javin Welsh earned a pin over Chapman freshman Joey Alonzo at 138. The Cowboys were open at 145 with the Irish getting the first six points of the match.
Next at 152, Chapman junior Kyler Welling pinned Abilene freshman Aidan Henely to move the score to 36-12.
The Cowboys got a pin from junior Trenton Wuthnow over Chapman junior Lawrence Smith at 160 while Chapman sophomore Jeremiah Hughes pinned Abilene senior Luke Hager at 170. Abilene’s Colby Mohr moved up a weight from 182 to 195 to wrestle Chapman senior Jacob Doolittle. Mohr won by fall over Doolittle and the Irish earned a six-point forfeit to Ryan Hengemuhle at 182.
Heading into the final two matches, the Cowboys had a 48-24 lead. At 220, Chapman senior Zach Ferris bested Abilene junior Brandon Parker with a Major Decision (12-1) to earn four team points for the Irish. Ferris was the runner-up at 220 in last years’ Class 4A State Wrestling Tournament in Salina and is currently ranked in the top two of the state again.
“He (Ferris) is a returning state finalist and we knew that would be a big match for Brandon,” Stout said. “But he did a fine job. He fought hard and wrestled really well in the first period giving up very few points. Just couldn’t get a lot of scoring.”
In the final match, Cowboy senior Adam Henely earned a pin over Irish sophomore Colt Sell. The six points went to the Cowboys for the final 54-28 team score.
Both teams will travel next Friday and Saturday to Concordia for the 2019-2020 Regional Tournament with state qualifiers advancing to the state meet Feb. 28 and 29 in Salina.
Contact Ron Preston at firstname.lastname@example.org.