Wednesday kicked off the winter sports season for Lansing wrestling and swimming and Leavenworth swimming.
The Lions wrestling team hosted Olathe South for a dual. Lansing fell 46-18.
Head coach Nick Flynn said it was not the team’s best performance, but he was still happy with how the team wrestled.
“Overall, it wasn’t our best performance,” Flynn said, “But I am in no way disappointed about the way we competed against Olathe South. They were a very sound team and it was clear they were very well coached. They wrestled fundamental wrestling and really did a good job shutting down our offense on the mat. The first competition is always a good checkpoint. It really shows us where we are at and what we need to work on. Right now, it is getting off the bottom. I was really happy with how we wrestled on our feet, but we really struggled getting up from bottom. It is hard to win high-level matches when you can’t get that escape point.”
The Lions saw four wrestlers win their individual matches Wednesday night. The four were Camden Maestas, Joseph Irwin, Malachi Tinnel and Braiden McKee.
Flynn had high praise for the winners.
“I was extremely pleased in Camden Maestas,” he said. “We wrestled him up a weight last night. He took on a state-ranked opponent who clearly had size on Camden. Cam really dominated the whole match. I continue to be more and more impressed with his growth and determination to be the best. Could not be more pleased with him at the moment. Joseph Irwin also had a dominating win. Since Joseph was a freshman, he has been putting on performances like last night. It seems like I am always saying the same thing about the way he competes. He has true belief in himself and simply goes out there and gets the job done. He will be a tough man to challenge this year.”
“Malachi Tinnel was faced against a tough opponent last night and made short work of it,” he continued. “He found himself in a position early in the match to get a pin and was able to finish the match early. What I was most impressed with was his movement at the start of the match. Malachi has always had great movement but he is on another level now. Braiden McKee ended the night on a positive note. He also wrestled a state-ranked opponent and dominated the match. Although the score was close, he controlled the entire match. He is starting to get some good motion and I think his offense will really open up on his feet once he can commit to his shots.”
Flynn also pointed out the strong effort of Dylan Ward, who fell in the 170-pound match to Blake Jouret.
“Dylan Ward took a hard loss against a solid wrestler,” Flynn said. “But I was happy with the way he competed. He forced some action and gave up an early takedown. His opponent had great defense and was able to keep him at bay for the rest of the match. I was pretty impressed with the way he competed though. I know Dylan is looking forward to getting another crack at that guy.”
Flynn said the team has a lot of work to do to get where they want to be, but the team is looking forward to the process. Flynn said he can’t wait to get back to work.
The Lions return to the mat Saturday morning at Leavenworth. The tournament is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m.
The Lansing Lions kicked off their 2018-19 season at Topeka West on Wednesday in an invitational. The team finished fourth with a score of 314.5. Olathe Northwest, Washburn Rural and Manhattan finished ahead of the Lions.
In the 200-yard medley relay, Kade Imhoff, Tucker Dixon, Evan Dusseleir and Luka Misevic swam a state consideration time of 1:54.77. The four swimmers are all from Basehor-Linwood, swimming with the Lions this season. The relay team of Robert Schafer, Maxwell Walck, Brock Martin and Jake Hamilton swam a state qualifying time of 1:52.33.
Hamilton, Schafer, Martin and Zachary Crumpacker swam a 3:45.20 in the 400 free relay for a consideration time.
In individual races, Crumpacker and Walck swam consideration times – Crumpacker in the 200 freestyle and Walck in the 200 individual medley. The two also swam state qualifying times. Crumpacker in the 500 free and Walck in the 100 breaststroke.
Greyson Walker and Hamilton swam consideration times in the 50 freestyle.
Evan Dusselier swam two state qualifying times in the 100 butterfly and backstroke.
Head coach Josh Floetke said the team had a great first meet.
“We had a great first outing and qualified a relay and quite a few individuals to the state meet in February,” Floetke said. “It was exciting to see the new guys race for the first time. It is always nice to get a chance to compete in the state pool. We are looking forward to our relay meet at home this Saturday. It is a great time.”
The Lions will host their home meet Saturday. It is scheduled to begin at noon.
In the first meet of the season, the Pioneers qualified the 200 medley relay for the 6A state meet and earned another five state consideration times. The Pioneers finished in the top four in eight races and returners to the team earned eight personal best times. Weston Marshall, Kato Fischer, Curtis Springer and Jack Schilling earned the state qualifying time of 1:49.69 by just over two seconds to begin the meet. The four also took third place in the 400 freestyle relay in 3:48.43, a state consideration time. Nick Walker, Antonio Lemus, Carson Fowler and Connor Engen placed fifth as a team in the 200 freestyle relay. Leading the Pioneers individually were Weston Marshall with two third-place finishes in the 200 individual medley and 100 butterfly, both state consideration times, and Kato Fischer with third-place finishes in the 100 free and 100 breaststroke (state consideration time). Curtis Springer took fourth in the 100 fly behind teammate Marshall, also earning a consideration cut, and third in the 500 freestyle. Jack Schilling also had a third-place (100 back) and fourth-place finish (100 free).
Head coach Kaley Wittrock said she was pleased with the results.
“Overall, I am really pleased with how the team did,” Wittrock said. “I am especially happy with how well our returners did in earning eight personal best times or swimming close to their best times from last year. The new swimmers beat their time trial times from practice and raced really well. In moving up to 6A for state this year, we are faced with the challenge of earning faster qualifying times and the boys are responding well to the challenge. It is a great start to qualify a relay and get five consideration times.”
The Pioneers returned to the pool Thursday night in a triangular at Shawnee Mission West.