Baldwin wrestlers win medals at tournament
Despite being new to freestyle and greco-roman wrestling, the Halford brothers have adapted rather quickly. Five Baldwin High School wrestlers competed in the Sunflower Gold tournament at Washburn Rural High School Saturday and came home with six medals total. And of those six medals, the brother duo of Seth and Luke Halford won four.
Luke Halford, competing in his first ever freestyle/greco-roman competition, went 4-0 on the day with four falls, winning two gold medals. He was having much success for the Baldwin Wrestling Club and Coach Tracy Potter this past season, but missed out on a chance to qualify for Kids State as he couldn't compete at districts due to an injury. He will be entering the 8th grade at Baldwin Junior High School next year.
His older brother, Seth Halford, won two third-place medals in the Cadet division. And his second third-place medal was most impressive, as the pairings coordinators mistakingly put Seth in a higher weight division. Instead of causing the hassle of having them redo the brackets and holding up the tournament, he decided to wrestle up a weight for the extra challenge. He proceeded to win two of his four matches, both hard-fought close decisions, to place third. He went 3-1 in greco to earn third-place in that style also. Seth Halford will be a sophomore at BHS next year.
The other two medals won by Bulldogs were due to the efforts of sophomore Witt Hinton and junior Andy Breedlove. Hinton placed second in greco, while Breedlove placed third in greco for a bronze medal. In freestyle, Breedlove was 3-2 and Hinton was 2-2, but neither wrestler earned a medal in that style.
Freshman Nathan Deel also competed in the tournament, winning a silver medal in greco-roman and a bronze medal in freestyle.
Overall records for the day were: Luke Halford (4-0, two gold medals); Seth Halford (5-3, two bronze medals); Hinton (3-3, silver medal in Greco); Breedlove (3-4, bronze medal in Greco); Deel (silver in freestyle, bronze in greco).
The Sunflower Gold tournament was the wrestlers' last chance to tune up for this weekend's State Freestyle/Greco-Roman wrestling tournament, which will be hosted by BHS wrestling coach Kit Harris in the Baldwin High School gymnasium on June 2-3. Wrestling for the greco-roman division will begin Friday evening around 6 p.m. Freestyle wrestling will begin Saturday morning.
There will be kids as young as 9 years old to high school-aged wrestlers competing for the title of State champion. The high-school wrestlers are also competing for a chance to make the Kansas National Team which will compete in Fargo, N.D., in July in an attempt to earn All-American honors. The top three placers in each style are guaranteed a spot on the national team.