BHS places fourth against big schools
The Baldwin High School wrestling team opened the season by placing fourth in the "Show No Mercy" Dual Tournament Saturday at Shawnee Mission East. The tournament was very successful for Baldwin with the Bulldogs placing fourth against all Class 5A and 6A schools. BHS was the only Class 4A school in the tournament.
BHS started by defeating Washburn Rural 50-21. The Bulldogs then beat Wichita Heights 42-30 and they also went on to beat Topeka West 63-18. The last two matches didn't go as well, as the Bulldogs lost to Shawnee Heights 44-22 and to Emporia 54-20.
"We held our own just fine," said BHS coach Kit Harris.
There were many Baldwin wrestlers that did well. Junior Kyle Flory and sophomore Joe Bonner both went 5-0. Flory wrestles at 171 pounds and Bonner at 112 pounds. Both Derek Lang and Dan Hamilton went 4-1 with four falls.
"My first two matches were pretty sloppy, but the last two progressed," said Bonner, a state qualifier last year. "I still need to work on positioning and endurance."
Sam Hinton, Steve Hamilton, Seth Halford and Sam Coffey all finished 3-2 with two falls.
"I did all right. I wish I would have done better. I think if I keep practicing hard I will improve a lot," said Halford, who also qualified for state last year.
"My goal for the season is to place at state," said Bonner.
"I want to do the best I can with my abilities," said Halford. "I would like to go to state and place, but I have a long road ahead of me."
Harris was pleased overall with his squad.
"We have some kids that are real serious about what they want to accomplish, so it causes them to sometimes get down on themselves when things don't go just right," Harris said. "But we need to keep in mind it was the first meet of the year, and also we wrestled some of the state's top competition and they have a tendency to make you not look very good. But I was real happy with their fight. The walked off the mat evaluating themselves, both the positive and negative. That is what we should be doing early in the year."
BHS will be competing against Perry-Lecompton and Holton at Perry-Lecompton High School on Thursday.
Baldwin defeated Holton 62-6 last year, and then posted a "perfect" score of 84-0 against Perry-Lecompton. That win put BHS in the national record books as the Bulldogs became only the 12th team nationally to accomplish the feat with 14 weight classes.
"If we pull together as a team and fill all our weight classes, we should do well," said Coffey.
"We have to wrestle tough. We can't ever overlook anybody," Harris said. "I don't care who we wrestle, when or where . . . we need to strap it on and get ready for a state championship caliber match, always."