Casey Jumps took the mat as an overwhelming favorite in a dual all but assured as a victory for Platte County before it started.
The moment still carried significant weight for the Pirates’ top senior Thursday, Feb. 2 at Platte County High School. Three of four seniors earned wins against Raytown South in a 60-13 victory for Platte County in their final home dual, and the lone drama turned out to be waiting for Dakota Schmidt’s 170-pound matchup with Class 3 state runner-up Ottis Peeler near the end.
Jumps grabbed two quick takedowns and then a first period pin against Braden Tofaeono in the 220 match, which lasted just 1 minute, 23 seconds.
“We fought hard tonight,” said Jumps, ranked No. 2 in Class 3 at 220 according to missouriwrestling.com. “This program means everything to me so it was good just getting one last dual win in front of the home crowd. We all wrestled the right way tonight, and that’s just how we’ve always done it at Platte County.
"And that’s how we’re going to keep doing it.”
After a forfeit for Sage Smart at 195, Platte County increased its lead to 12-0 with Jumps’ victory. The Pirates then lost back-to-back matches at 285 and 106 to put Raytown South within 12-7.
The next five weight classes decided the dual with Raytown South providing four forfeits, including an open for senior Zach Rolofson at 126. Blake Bills’ 19-second pin of Zach Hill at 120 was the only match in that stretch, which left Platte County ahead 42-7.
Jaron Hoegler, another senior, built a big lead at 145 and then posted a pin in the second period at the 3:49 mark to cap his home career at Platte County.
“It was huge. These four years have been really emotional ups and downs,” said Hoegler, who went 0-2 in Class 3 District 4 competition last year. “To finish it off with a pin just made everything a lot better. It made me look back on all four years and appreciate what I’ve been able to do.
“I’ve worked on the things I need to work on, and I’ve improved a lot this season.”
Platte County’s lead hit 60-7 after an open at 152 and Jackson Phan’s pin at 160, setting up the night’s featured matchup.
A two-time state medalist for Raytown South, Peeler — ranked No. 1 at 170 — controlled the matchup with an early takedown giving him a 2-1 lead after the first period. He added three more takedowns in a 9-4 victory over Schmidt, who managed four escapes in the loss.
Schmidt ranks No. 4 at 170 but has a win over No. 3 Seth Veatch of Rolla since the last update. Peeler beat Schmidt 9-4 in last year’s Class 3 District 4 170 final, and Schmidt went on to go 1-2 at state in his first appearance.
Raytown South added to its final score closing the dual with Lewis Caples’ 6-0 decision at 182 against Ahmad Holt, Platte County’s fourth senior. Holt continues to wrestle up two weight classes while filling a hole in the lineup.
The four seniors were honored before the dual, and outside of Holt’s gutsy loss, the night went almost perfectly as they helped wrap up another Suburban Conference Blue Division title.
Platte County went 5-0 this year with a dramatic home win vs. Kearney, and the Pirates entered the finale as favorites and not facing mush pressure.
“I wouldn’t say nerves,” Hoegler said. “It was just a lot of emotion — last time I’m ever going to wrestle here. This team? I love these guys.”
Platte County 72, Winnetonka 6
The Pirates won five of seven head-to-head matches Tuesday, Jan. 31 at Platte County High School with pins for Vincent Cesaro (106), Nolan Saale (132), Phan (160), Smart (195) and Matthew Knopp (285). Winnetonka won back-to-back decisions at 145 and 152.
In the 145 match, Hoegler lost 9-4 to No. 5-ranked Tyler Stults, who had three takedowns. All four of Hoegler’s points came on escapes.