MSHSAA Day 1 Recap: Three KC area teams lead respective classes

After just two rounds at the Missouri State High School Activities Association state wrestling tournament, a number of Kansas City area teams are sitting well in the standings.

The tournament being held at Mizzou Arena in Columbia, Missouri, kicked off Thursday with the first round (round of 16) in the championship side of the bracket and the first wrestle-back round.

In the Class 4 boys tournament, local teams Liberty and Staley are leading the way after the opening day. Liberty leads all Class 4 teams with 37 points, with Staley close behind at 32.5 points. 

All 11 Liberty wrestlers are still alive in the tournament. Jason Briones was the only Blue Jay to fall in the opening round, but the bounced back with a 6-3 victory in the first round of the consolation bracket.

The other 10 Blue Jays advanced to the quarterfinals, which will begin at 1:15 p.m. Friday. Six of them pinned their first-round opponent – four in the first round – while the other four won by major decision. 

Staley has nine of its 12 competitors left in the tournament. Six Falcons won their first-round match, advancing to Friday’s quarterfinals, while three more lost their first match but responded with a victory in the consolation round.

The three Staley wrestlers who qualified for state but exited the tournament were juniors Craig Omozeje (126 pounds), Kaden Trickey (182) and Watson Reed.

Park Hill sits in 10th place after the opening round with all five of its wrestlers still alive in the tournament. Four of the Trojans won their first-round matches, with two by major decision and one by a first-round fall.

Fort Osage also has five wrestlers still competing, and all five of them advanced to the quarterfinal round. Freshman Grayson Moore (138) lost both of his matches at his first state tournament.

Liberty North has five competitors alive, too, with two of them in the consolation side of their bracket. The other three won their first-round matches. Freshman Elmotie Williams (285) lost both of his matches, exiting the tournament. 

Three teams battling atop Class 3

Platte County leads all KC area teams in the Class 3 tournament after the first day. The Pirates are in sixth place, and have all seven wrestlers left to compete. Five of the seven won their first-round matches, with four of those coming by fall.

Kearney is four spots behind the Pirates following the opening day of competition. The Bulldogs have all eight competitors left to wrestle Friday, with four of them facing elimination when the action begins on the second day of the tournament. 

Smithville is tied for 12th place in the Class 3 standings. All seven Warriors who qualified for the state tournament are still alive, but five of them are in the consolation side of the bracket fighting to remain in the tournament Friday.

Roosters leading Class 2

After one day, the defending Class 2 state champions lead the way in Columbia. Pleasant Hill scored 41.5 points on the first day of competition, edging out Helias Catholic by 1.5 points.

Pleasant Hill has all 12 remaining in the tournament. The first two Roosters who competed in the first round of the championship bracket lost their matches, but both bounced back with victories in the wrestle-back round Thursday.

The other 10 Roosters won their opening matches – seven by fall, two by major decision and one by tech fall. Eleven of 12 Roosters scored at least three team points on the first day of competition.

Cameron and Odessa are in the top 10 of the team standings after day one. Cameron has seven of eight of its wrestlers alive, and four of them are on the championship side of the bracket.

Odessa has five competitors remaining, after three of its eight were eliminated. Just two Bulldogs are in the championship quarterfinals.

Defending champion Dragons lead early

Mid-Buchanan took a commanding lead after the first day of the Class 1 state tournament. The Dragons, who won the 2021 state title, scored 38 team points on the first day, taking a 13.5-point lead over second-place Marceline.

Twelve of 13 Dragons remain in their respective brackets following the first day of competition. Nine of those 12 are alive in the championship quarterfinals, after six won by fall and two won their matches by just a single point.

Senior Zander Kountz was eliminated from the state tournament after two losses. 

Several teams battling in girls tournament

Through just two rounds on the first day of the MSHSAA girls state tournament, a handful of KC area teams won several matches to keep themselves among the top schools.

Cameron, Kearney and Park Hill are all tied for seventh place in the team standings after day one of the tournament. Park Hill has all four of its wrestlers alive, with two in the championship bracket. Cameron and Kearney have their three competitors left, also with two set for Friday’s quarterfinals, which are set to begin at 11:45 p.m.

Harrisonville and Platte County are tied for 12th place with two other schools, scoring 10 team points each. Harrisonville has four of its five wrestlers left in the tournament, while Platte County has all three of its competitors remaining. 

Liberty and Liberty North scored eight points on the first day. Both schools had both of their wrestlers win their respective first-round matches.

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