Back and forth, Danny Wilson paced.
It was midday Saturday and the Pioneer wrestler followed an unseen line on the hardwood gymnasium floor. Swimming around him were fellow competitors at the annual Leavenworth Challenger, but Wilson focused on nothing else outside of a few feet in front of his steps.
He had entered a zone, his zone, and by the end of the day that intense concentration paid off.
With a perfect 3-0 record, Wilson claimed one of four first place medals the Pioneers racked up at its annual wrestling tournament over the weekend.
“I’m really proud of Danny,” Leavenworth coach Jay Johnston said. “He seems really determined this year after battling injury last year. He beat 2012 state placer Tristan Star, whom he had never beaten, to win the tournament. It’s the best I have ever seen him wrestle.”
Lansing also participated in the tourney and had two claim top spots in their weight classes — both Spencer Walling and Caleb Ward went 5-0 to win first in the 120 pound and 182 pound B divisions respectively.
“We were real excited for them,” Lansing coach Ron Averill said. “Spencer is a senior and it’s good for him to have success at the first part of the season. Caleb has put in a lot of time ever since the end of last season so it’s nice to see him reap the rewards from that hard work early.”
Besides Wilson’s 113 A division gold, other first-place medalists for Leavenworth included Kelsey Mason (145 B), Kenneth Sculley (195 B) and Nathan Butler (285 A). All three finished 5-0.
“After a disappointing season last year, Kelsey had a great start to his season,” Johnston said. “Ken was extremely impressive in that he kept getting better as the day went on. Nate is the only other Pioneer besides Shawn Bunch to win three Challenger tournament titles, which is an impressive feat.”
Other Leavenworth results were:
Tilden Edwards went 3-2, third at 160 A
Jesse Colver went 3-2, third at 220 A
Michael Harrington went 3-1, third at 132 B
Danial Wilson went 1-4, fifth at 138 A
Peter Gardner went 1-4, fifth at 170 A
Jason Rydalch went 1-4, fifth at 126 B
Hannah Overbey went 1-3, seventh at 120 B
Behind Lansing’s pair of medalists, two Lions collected second place titles. At 132 pounds, Elijah Hill was second in the B division after a 4-1 record while Will Gering went 3-1 to get runner-up honors in the 138 B division.
“It was exciting to see them jump head first into the competition,” Averill said. “What I really liked is that we worked on a few things between matches and they adjusted very well to the instruction so that will bode well for the future.”
Page 2 of 2 - Other Lansing results were:
Jordan Girard went 3-2, third at 113 B
Treyvon Taylor went 2-3, third at 195 B
Sky Summers went 1-3, fourth at 120 A
Cole Hoing went 2-3, fourth at 126 A
Zach Caraccilo went 1-4, fifth at 145 B
Welsey Pippin went 1-4, fifth at 170 B
Justin Smith went 0-5, sixth at 152 B
Kyle Hallinan went 0-5, sixth at 160 B
The Pioneers will host Lawrence Free State at 6:30 p.m. tonight while the Lions will next compete in the Eudora Tournament, which starts Friday afternoon.