Platte County’s Eli Rocha and Park Hill’s Trey Crawford were named to the all-tournament team in recent events last month.
Rocha, who will be a sophomore, went 6-0 with four technical falls in the freestyle portion of the 16U Cadet National Duals in Spokane, Washington.
Wrestling in the 126-pound class for Team Missouri, Rocha got tech fall wins against Evan Barajas of Idaho (10-0), Christian Moder of Florida (12-1), Hayden Watson of Indiana (10-0) and Carson Dulitz of Kansas (11-0). He also got an 8-2 win against EJ Tecson of Oklahoma, (8-2) and a (10-9) win over AJ Smith of Minnesota.
The Missouri Team beat Florida in the D pool to take third place and then was second in the Bronze/Copper pool, falling to Wiscconsin.
He went 0-2 in Roman-Greco in Spokane, falling to foes from Pennsylvania and Illinois.
Tulsa, Okla., hosted the Junior National Duals at the Cox Business Center later in the month.
Wrestling for Team Missouri was Rocha, Crawford, as well as Park Hill’s Cael Keck.
Crawford was 35 athletes picked for the Junior Freestyle National Duals All-Tournament team. He went 5-0.
Crawford got a 13-0 tech fall against Austin Keal of Kansas, then bested Minnesota’s Cole Becker, 10-0 in pool matches.
In the Bronze/Copper pool, Crawford went 3-0 for Missouri, which beat Oklahoma for third place.
Crawford (132) got a 10-0 win against Colorado’s Daniel Shaw, 10-0 against Wisconsin’s Caleb Gross and pinned Oklahoma’s Dalton Burdick in 27 seconds in the place match.
Keck (100) went 5-3 and ended with a 12-0 tech fall against Gael Mendez from Oklahoma. He also got wins against Kansas’ Dalton Weber (10-0), Minnesota’s Marshall Larson (pin in 45 seconds), Michigan’s Jacob Brya (13-12) and Colorado’s David King (10-0).
Rocha, splitting time with Fulton’s Sam Hrabovsky, went 2-0.
The Pirate pinned New Jersey’s Nicholas DiGiacomo in 1:38 and got a 12-2 tech fall against Bryce Jankowski of Wisconsin.
In Roman-Greco, each area wrestler posted a winning mark or better.
Rocha went 6-2, the best mark of the trio.
He opened with an 18-7 win against Indiana’s Antonio Jefferson then won his next two, beating California’s Nicolas Garza (12-0) and Oklahoma’s Carter Young (8-4). Colorado’s Johnny Masopust ended Rocha’s win streak with a 14-11 decision, but Rocha got a 4-3 decision against Illinois’ Brody Norman. After a loss to California’s Timothy Levine, 8-4, Rocha ended with a 10-0 win against Washington’s Nico Crosnoe and pinned Iowa’s Joseph Sullivan in 1:53.
Keck went 4-4 with wins against Indiana’s Braxton Vest, California’s Sammy Salazar, Colorado’s David King and a forfeit win.
Crawford went 2-1 in limited action, splitting time with Staley’s Khyler Brewer at 132.
He posted wins against California’s Tre Orlando (11-1) and Illinois’ Ezekiel Hulet (14-3).
ATKINSON TAKES OVER AT NORTH PLATTE
North Platte will turn to assistant baseball coach Daniel Atkinson to lead the Panthers next spring.
At the conclusion of the school year, coach Grant Tysdahl stepped down to focus on his duties as athletic director and Atkinson was chosen as his replacement.
This will be Atkinson’s second head coach gig, after serving as the school’s wrestling coach from 2008-2011.
He will start his seventh year of coaching as the head coach after serving as an assistant for a team that went 6-14.
His first coaching job came at North Platte when he was a student at Missouri Western.
“We were living in the school district and I knew it was a great atmosphere at North Platte,” said Atkinson, who was an assistant at Craig in 2011-2012 and later at Savannah in 2012-2014, about coming back to North Platte. “I knew a lot of the staff members … it was a good fit.”
Atkinson, a Mid-Buchanan High School graduate, said he has learned a lot from Tysdahl and hopes to build upon it next spring.
When Tysdahl approached him late in the spring that he would be stepping down, Atkinson said taking the job was a ‘no-brainer.’
He and his wife, Mandi, have been married nine years and have three children: Harper, 5, Cooper, 4, and Kemper, 2.
PLATTE COUNTY FOOTBALL
A few Pirates have made some waves in the recruiting circuit.
Offensive lineman Wyett Wallingford, Trey Butcher, running back Cayden Davis, defensiv end/linebacker Garret Watson and quarterback Chris Ruhnke are just a few to impress those at 810 Varsity and Six Star Football.
Davis had the 12th fastest 40-yard dash earlier this summer at the 810 combine. Wallingford has drawn interest by way of junior day invites or unofficial visits to Missouri, Missouri State, Tulsa, Southern Illinois, Central Missouri, Missouri Western, Murray State, Tennessee-Martin and recently picked up offer from Culver-Stockton.
Fellow lineman Butcher, a left guard, has attended plenty of camps this season. Six Star noted his ability to get his man to the ground, who noted he improved his stock during a camp in Carthage.
Butcher also attended camps at William Jewell (twice), Missouri Baptist, McKendree and is slated to go to Southwest Baptist later this month.
Ruhnke, a 6-foot-3 junior, was the camp MVP at the 810 Varsity combine in May and was tabbed as one of the top risers in the KC area by Six Star, which is in its third year and features three former coaches on the staff.
Watson, who played on the defensive line last year for the Pirates, was listed on Six Star Football for being a rising DE/LB. The senior-to-be was noted for his ability to rush the passer to covering wide receivers — which he has done in the Epic7Midwest camps this summer. He also attended events at Central Missouri, Lindenwood, William Jewell, South Dakota State, Minnesota State and Benedictine. Also, he was part of the 810 Varsity Combine.