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FHSU's Keehn wins second MIAA title in track -3/2/2015, 10:28 AM

Wessel continues to spark Shockers -3/2/2015, 10:28 AM

Ronda Rousey's fast work, like at UFC 184, a big draw -3/2/2015, 10:28 AM

Minnie Minoso's love of baseball never waned -3/2/2015, 10:28 AM

FHSU wrestling sending four to nationals -3/2/2015, 10:28 AM

Kansas State rallies late to put away Iowa State -3/1/2015, 9:33 AM

No. 8 Kansas holds on to defeat Texas, 69-64 -3/1/2015, 9:31 AM

Wichita State captures MVC crown by beating Northern Iowa -3/1/2015, 9:30 AM

Ellis' Younger cruises through Friday at 3-2-1A -3/1/2015, 9:39 AM

Hays High's Deterding second in 4A -3/1/2015, 9:58 AM

Norton wins title with backside points -3/1/2015, 9:36 AM

Hoxie's Porsch repeats in 3-2-1A -3/1/2015, 9:43 AM

FHSU splits at Northeastern State -3/1/2015, 9:41 AM

HHS girls win on senior night -3/1/2015, 9:40 AM

HHS boys roll by Great Bend -3/1/2015, 9:39 AM

Class 3-2-1A State Wrestling finals results -2/28/2015, 9:37 AM

Tigers fall, need win to host first round -2/27/2015, 10:20 AM

Tiger women, MIAA champs, hang on -2/27/2015, 10:29 AM

Monarchs survive on senior night -2/27/2015, 12:17 PM

With KU back in control, Jayhawks prepare for 'high drama' -2/27/2015, 10:19 AM

Nino Williams takes long road to success at Kansas State -2/27/2015, 10:18 AM

Sub-state basketball pairings -2/26/2015, 10:37 AM

3-2-1A wrestling -- Younger part of youth movement for Railers -2/26/2015, 10:48 AM

Big 12 reprimands K-State after court-storming -2/26/2015, 10:53 AM

Hays High's top four headed to Salina -2/26/2015, 10:36 AM

3-2-1A wrestling -- HDN area state qualifiers -2/26/2015, 10:48 AM

3-2-1A wrestling -- Porsch seeks a repeat in state finale -2/26/2015, 10:49 AM

3-2-1A wrestling -- Freshman Hutchinson leads young group of Redmen -2/26/2015, 10:49 AM

3-2-1A wrestling -- Norton steps up again to have shot at 3-2-1A state crown -2/26/2015, 10:50 AM

Shockers fight past Indiana State, set up big Saturday -2/26/2015, 10:27 AM

Rhoades back at state -- this time in 4A -2/26/2015, 10:36 AM

TMP survives Plainville -2/25/2015, 11:26 AM

K-State issues apology -2/25/2015, 10:22 AM

HHS swept at Dodge -2/25/2015, 10:22 AM

Tuesday's area prep basketball boxscores -2/25/2015, 10:21 AM

Royals still hoping for Starling to break out -2/24/2015, 10:22 AM

Penske revels in Logano's victory at Daytona 500 -2/24/2015, 10:22 AM

Wildcat's win throws a roadblock at Jayhawks -2/24/2015, 10:22 AM

KBCA prep basketball rankings, Feb. 23 -2/24/2015, 10:22 AM

Wildcats get it done -2/24/2015, 10:22 AM

No-name Hahn wins Northern Trust Open -2/23/2015, 10:24 AM

FHSU softball splits on Sunday in Minnesota -2/23/2015, 10:15 AM

Logano wins first Daytona 500 -2/23/2015, 10:15 AM

Lutz: VanVleet has another day to remember -2/23/2015, 10:14 AM

VanVleet takes Wichita State's assists title in win -2/23/2015, 10:14 AM

'Cats seek confidence before game with KU -2/23/2015, 10:14 AM

Perry Ellis, No. 8 Kansas rebound from loss, beat TCU -2/22/2015, 12:47 PM

Baylor drills K-State -2/22/2015, 12:48 PM

Monarch girls run away from Stockton -2/22/2015, 12:38 PM

TMP wins physical game at Stockton -2/22/2015, 12:39 PM

Mathews all-state for HHS -2/22/2015, 12:48 PM

HHS wins at Garden, jumps back into WAC race -2/22/2015, 12:41 PM

Wrestling roundup -- Hays High sends four to 4A state -2/22/2015, 8:19 PM

Victoria puts together complete game in win at Ness City -2/22/2015, 12:40 PM

HHS girls fall down early, lose at Garden -2/22/2015, 12:39 PM

Earnhardt Jr. makes Duel history, Patrick qualifies -2/20/2015, 10:19 AM

HHS sends relays to state -2/20/2015, 10:19 AM

Tiger baseball takes two from UCM -2/20/2015, 10:19 AM

Gene Stephenson says he's filed his own appeal -2/19/2015, 10:13 AM

TCU takes out K-State -2/19/2015, 10:13 AM

Bohuslavsky keys win for Tiger women -2/19/2015, 10:59 AM

Tiger men rally for MIAA win -2/19/2015, 10:13 AM

Tiger women No. 1 in Central Region -2/18/2015, 5:04 PM

Tuesday's area prep basketball boxscores -2/18/2015, 11:22 AM

Barton's Hensley named Player of the Week -2/18/2015, 10:24 AM

TMP boys win, girls fall in Great Bend -2/18/2015, 10:24 AM

K-State hopes to build some momentum at TCU -2/18/2015, 10:24 AM

Two in a row for HHS girls -2/18/2015, 10:47 AM

Hot early, HHS boys get win at Abilene -2/18/2015, 10:47 AM

All is possible at Daytona -2/17/2015, 10:27 AM

WVU tops Jayhawks in wild finish -2/17/2015, 10:27 AM

Chiefs can find impact receiver in NFL draft -2/17/2015, 10:27 AM

Chargers set sights on LA, push San Diego officials for action on stadium -2/17/2015, 10:27 AM

Defense a constant for Shockers -2/17/2015, 10:26 AM

FHSU, UCM series moved to Hays -2/16/2015, 10:55 AM

KU prepares for full-court press -2/16/2015, 10:17 AM

Foster lifts Kansas State past Oklahoma on Saturday -2/16/2015, 10:16 AM

Three Tigers crowned MIAA champs -2/16/2015, 10:16 AM

Bowyer, after crash, slams qualifying format -2/16/2015, 10:16 AM

Phillipsburg girls knock off TMP at the buzzer -2/15/2015, 7:54 PM

Hays High girls snap losing skid -2/15/2015, 2:21 PM

Hays High stunned by Liberal at the buzzer -2/15/2015, 7:54 PM

Tiger women's streak halted at Pitt State -2/15/2015, 10:26 AM

Tiger softball 1-3 to start season -2/15/2015, 7:54 PM

Tiger men fall at Pitt -2/15/2015, 7:54 PM

Tigers drop to 0-2 with losses to Mines, Regis -2/15/2015, 1:10 AM

KU coach kicks off tour in Hays -2/13/2015, 11:10 AM

K-State guard Johnson laughs off hecklers at W. Virginia -2/13/2015, 10:13 AM

The Tigers' do-it-all Shaw -2/13/2015, 11:10 AM

Samac staying on court, providing big games for Tigers -2/13/2015, 11:09 AM

Wichita State baseball players see winning as antidote to distractions -2/13/2015, 10:12 AM

Royals, Herrera agree -2/13/2015, 10:12 AM

Royals purchase contract of Derek Gordon -2/13/2015, 10:12 AM

KU's Ellis near 1,000 points -2/13/2015, 10:12 AM

Hoxies' record just a matter of time? -2/12/2015, 3:26 PM

New coach, new season for FHSU softball -2/12/2015, 11:25 AM

Tigers look for better pitching in 2015 -2/12/2015, 10:14 AM

Shox roll to win -2/12/2015, 10:04 AM

Kansas State rally again falls short at W. Virginia -2/12/2015, 10:04 AM

FHSU wrestling rolls to dual win -2/12/2015, 10:04 AM

Sports Scores

Tuesday

Prep basketball

Boys

Atwood 76, St. Francis 65

Dighton 62, Oberlin 47

Hillsboro 50, Goodland 47

Lakeside 42, Lincoln 32

Minneapolis 68, Russell 35

Rock Hills 42, Natoma 37

Salina Central 62, Andover 58

Salina South 62, Sacred Heart 47

Sharon Springs 75, Leoti 38

St. John's Beloit-Tipton 57, Osborne 34

Sylvan-Lucas 61, Thunder Ridge 48

Girls

Dighton 44, Atwood 11

Dodge City 71, Hays High 28

Hesston 51, Goodland 18

Hoisington 60, Victoria 46

Hoxie 65, St. Francis 13

Lincoln 33, Lakeside 26

Minneapolis 47, Otis-Bison 24

Osborne 59, Wilson 34

Sharon Springs 63, Oberlin 42

Sylvan-Lucas 43, Natoma 41 (ot)

Tescott 41, Rock Hills 33

Trego 56, Leoti 27

Thunder Ridge 33, St. John's Beloit-Tipton 30

Click To View All


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SPOTLIGHT
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3-2-1A: Norton uses rare schedule to better prepare

Published on -2/24/2013, 8:38 PM

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By CONOR NICHOLL

cnicholl@dailynews.net

Norton Community High School coach Bill Johnson finished in the top four every year of his wrestling career at Fort Hays State University. That included one national championship and two runner-up finishes. For many national tournaments, collegians arrive several days prior -- similar to the unique schedule for the Class 3-2-1A state tournament this weekend at Gross Memorial Coliseum.

Because of the massive snowstorm that hit the state, the Kansas State High School Activities Association switched the state wrestling schedule from its usual Friday morning start to 4 p.m. Instead of wrestling three rounds of action, Friday featured just two rounds and concluded after 11 p.m. Norton arrived Wednesday, and spent two days in Hays before competing.

Norton, which qualified a tournament-high nine wrestlers, rolled to a big lead with 58.5 Day 1 points. Oberlin-Decatur Community and Plainville were tied for second with 39 points. The Bluejays were in position for their sixth state title in the last decade, and a big turnaround following a rare 16th-place finish last winter.

"That's what I told my team -- it feels like a national tournament in college," Johnson said. "You are there on-site several days before the tournament begins, and that's why I think I was able to prepare them for factors that we can control and factors that we absolutely can't control, and I think it's paying off."

Throughout the week, Johnson imposed a media blackout and called all information about his team "classified." Outside of answering one question about preparing with the different schedule, Johnson held to his silence.

"The semifinals haven't even been wrestled yet, so I would really like to respect the team's classified talking," Johnson said. "No information."

Instead, Johnson let his team's results -- and Norton's many displays of emotions and joy tell the story. The Bluejays still had all nine wrestlers competing Saturday. Norton went 8-1 in first-round matches with four wins by fall, one technical fall, one major decision and two decisions. Overall, Norton finished 15-3, including 6-2 in winner's bracket quarterfinals matches. All six of those wrestlers, including four whom had never placed at state before, were guaranteed medals.

"We are on a mission, and that mission is not even halfway completed yet," Johnson said.

Saturday morning featured the winner's bracket semifinals, a round normally reserved for the last part of Friday. Yet, the weather changed everything and forced a compressed schedule. KSHSAA wrestling administrator Mark Lentz, at Hays on Friday, said he had never dealt with a situation like this week.

"It's not something that we want, but Mother Nature did it, and we are going to adjust and move forward and try to keep it a positive, because it's still about the kids," Lentz said.

KSHSAA moved Friday's start time to 4 p.m. to accommodate 76 schools from all across the state traveling to Hays. Plus, the Class 4A meet occurred in Salina and the 5A and 6A meets were at Hartman Arena in Park City.

"One, we had to make sure that all sites had teams there," Lentz said. "We wanted to make sure all of our athletes arrived on time and were able to get here, and good thing we pushed it back, because it took everybody all that time to get everybody here. Plus, our mats didn't arrive here until about 3:20 (Friday), because of the fact that I-70 was closed, and then we condensed (Saturday) a little bit, because we want to get everybody home safely at all the sites, because of the melting and then the refreezing."

Lentz said KHSAA contemplated a Saturday/Sunday schedule, but wanted to keep all three sites on a similar schedule. On Sunday, the Bicentennial Center in Salina was hosting a youth wrestling tournament. The Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference had its postseason basketball tournament at Hartman Arena early next week and needed time to set up. Plus, another storm is expected to come in today. The fifth, third and championship matches will run at the same time Saturday.

"I think that it will create an exciting environment, because every team point is going to matter, and I think people will be excited," Lentz said. "It's not something that we are looking to do in the future, but it's something that we feel like is best in this condition, which has really been a crazy year."

The Bluejays, not expected to contend for a championship for most of the year, won the Norton regional last week. Norton immediately took the lead Friday when sophomore 106-pounder Caysean Campbell won by fall in 1 minute, 47 seconds, the first result of the state tournament. After the first round, Norton had 26.5 points, 9.5 ahead of runner-up Hoisington.

Campbell, in his first state appearance, started the winner's quarterfinals with another huge win, a 9-7 victory against Ellsworth junior Ty Nienke, the defending state runner-up. Nienke led 6-4 with 48 seconds left in the second period, but Campbell picked up four points and led 8-7 after the second period. As the clock ran out, Nienke sat back on the mat and put his head down.

Johnson, long known for his sideline gymnastics and constant chatter during a match, wore a big smile. Campbell ran over to Johnson, jumped into his coach's arms and the two bear hugged. A similar moment occurred at 120 pounds when Bluejay junior Branson Addington collected a 7-5 win in his second match. Addington is a three-time state qualifier, but this winter marked his first medal. At 145 pounds, senior Cody Ellis went 2-0 to clinch his first career state medal. As well, senior 220-pounder Lucas Engel earned a state medal with 14-8 and 2-1 decisions.

With the winner's bracket semifinals going Saturday, 56 wrestlers (as opposed to 28) still had a chance to win a state title.

Other than Norton, perhaps no area team had more finality Friday than Smith Center. The Redmen were tied for 10th with 21 points At 182, though, senior Kyler Atwood missed an opportunity to match his brother Matt's state title. Atwood lost in the quarterfinals, 9-8, to Riley-Riley County junior Gavin Grater. Redmen coach Brock Hutchinson said he was "very disappointed."

"Gavin Grater is a great wrestler, but we controlled that whole match," Hutchinson said. "Except for about 10 seconds, and we got beat because of it."

But freshman 106-pounder Cale Rogers and, his brother, junior 126-pounder Clint Rogers, clinched medals. Last year, Clint lost in the first round and battled back to place

"Nutrition was better this week," Hutchinson said. "More focused this week."

Including four state titles from their older brother, Colt, the three Rogers brothers, have combined for eight state medals in eight opportunities.

"Very happy for those kids," Hutchinson said. "They work their tails off as the whole team does."

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