Whitfield wrestlers did it again, Sports Briefs
By: Warren Mayes
Whitfield did it again
The Warriors won their fourth state championship in the last six years in Class 1.
Whitfield defended its Class 1 championship recently at Mizzou Arena in Columbia.
“We do things the right way,” Whitfield coach Charlie Sherertz said. “No way do we cut corners. We train like spartans.”
The Warriors had two state champions. Junior Rodney Hahn (49-2) won his third state championship at 152. He previously won at 132 and 145.
“It’s quite an accomplishment,” Sherertz said. “There’s a lot of ways not to get it done but Rodney has worked hard. I’ve had some three-time finalists but only three three-time champs. I’ve never had a four-time champ. He’s got a chance to do something nobody else has done at Whitfield.”
Senior Chris Wilkes (138) became a two-time champ. Wilkes (52-2) will wrestle this fall at North Carolina State.
The Warriors also received a third-place finish from senior Will Hahn at 160. Will Hahn (51-7) will wrestle at Duke this fall.
Whitfield had two fourth-place finishes – Connor Broyles at 106 and Derrick Swaney at 132. Finishing fifth were Kurtis Hahn at 126 and Andrew McLaughlin at 170.
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Two other local wrestlers also won state championships.
In Class 3, Westminster Christian Academy’s Bennett Lewis finished an unbeaten season at 53-0 by winning state at 195. He became just the second wrestler in school history to win a state championship.
“His mental preparation was extraordinary,” Westminster coach Tim Muehleisen said. “He had trained for how to focus as well as how to wrestle. He was prepared.”
Lewis will wrestle at Washington & Lee.
In Class 4, CBC junior Tim Gant won the state at 220. He finished with a 51-5 record.
“I had a tough road to the finals but I knew I could do it,” Grant said.
Winning state was more than he imagined.
“I had seen myself winning it all but even expecting to win wasn’t close to the emotions felt after the match,” Grant said. “I could not believe it. I knew I was extremely blessed for the opportunity.”
CBC coach Rocky Streb said, “It was rewarding for us to see all those months of work come to fruition. His triumph was shared by everyone. It was very important for our program. We’re trying to get noticed and become a relevant player in the area high school wrestling community. Being able to produce state champions should help up get the respect we want that will yield real tangible results in such things as invitations to high caliber tournaments.”
Also in Class 4, Eureka’s Matthew McClimens (37-4) finished second at 195.
High school swimming
The Parkway West Longhorns may have surprised some at the 38th annual Missouri Girls State Swimming and Diving Championship but not coach Allison Zeller.
The Longhorns finished tied for second in the meet held at the Rec-Plex in St. Peters.
“I told the girls going into the meet that we had a chance to get some hardware,” Zeller said. “I wanted us to stand on the podium as a team and get top four. I did not expect it to be a half-point separating second through fourth place.”
Springfield Glendale won with 190 points. Parkway West and Notre Dame de Sion each had 151.5 points while Parkway South was fourth with 151 points.
Lafayette was fifth at 126 and MICDS was sixth with 125 points. St. Joseph’s Academy wound up 10th with 90 points and Parkway Central was 12th with 76. Parkway North finished 17th with 56 points and Marquette tied for 18th with 51. Westminster Christian Academy was 28th with 14 points.
The Longhorns won the 200 medley relay with a time of 1 minute, 50.03 seconds. Girls on the relay team were Caroline Bias, Natalie Folkins, Carolyn Kammeyer, and Kristen Petersen. That time gave them a new school record. The previous school record was 1:53.98.
Parkway West junior Francis Giganti was second in the diving competition. She was just three points behind winner Kat Friese, a sophomore at MICDS, with her total of 416.50.
“High school swimming is such a great experience. There is no other meet like it where you get to represent your school and make a name for yourself,” Zeller said.
Parkway South coach Sara Gerth said her girls also had a great championship.
“This is the best state finish for us in the past five years,” Gerth said. “I’m really excited for my girls who worked so hard to achieve this.”
The Patriots set two new school records at the state meet.
Junior Samm Crocker finished second in the 50 freestyle in 23.81 seconds to beat her own school record. She was just beat by Glendale’s Nikke Sisson, who won with a time of 23.78. Senior CeCe Etter finished third in the competitive 500 free with a time of 5:02.60 that was a new Patriots record.
Club field hockey
Gateway Field Hockey Club of St. Louis finished in second place in the top flight of the recent National Disney Field Hockey Showcase in Orlando, Fla.
The U16 team, coached by Melissa Lantz and Nina Walters, won a silver medal competing against 96 top teams from the U.S. and Canada.
“The girls played with great tenacity and so much heart,” said Gateway Director Kelly Yates, who formerly coached at Lafayette before retiring. “This was a phenomenal second-place finish.”
High school girls basketball
There’s a new career scoring leader in Whitfield girls basketball – senior Stephanie Anderson.
She recently has topped the 1,500 career point milestone. Anderson hit the milestone in a recent 53-38 home victory by the Warriors over Notre Dame.
The previous record of 1,178 points was held by Tyler Ituen, who graduated in 2010.
“I am happy for Stephanie and fortunate to be her coach,” said coach Harold Barker. “Stephanie is a terrific example of a student-athlete who strives for excellence. She has exhibited tremendous growth both on and off the court.”
Barker said it’s a great accomplishment to score more than 1,500 in high school.
“Considering that 1,000 points is considered to be a stellar career, I think 1,500 points is very impressive,” Barker said. “I do not know how elite that (1,500-point) club is, but I have to imagine it is pretty rarefied air.”
Anderson said “topping the 1,500 points total has given me a feeling of self-accomplishment.”
High boys school soccer
The accolades continue to come to Chaminade soccer standout Tommy Barlow.
The Gatorade Company, in collaboration with USA TODAY, announced Feb. 19 that Barlow has been named the 2012-13 Gatorade Missouri Boys Soccer Player of the Year.
Barlow is the fourth Gatorade Missouri Boys Soccer Player of the Year to be chosen from Chaminade College Preparatory School.
The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field, distinguishes Barlow as Missouri’s best high school boys soccer player.
“This award means a lot to me,” Barlow said. “Looking back and seeing people before me that have received it, I am extremely blessed and honored to receive the award. I would like to thank my team and coaches for allowing me to have this opportunity to receive this incredible award.”
Barlow is a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Boys Soccer Player of the Year award that will be announced in May.
The 6-foot-1, 165-pound midfielder scored 27 goals and passed for 17 assists this past season, leading the Red Devils (25-3-2) to the Class 3 state championship match against CBC. An All-American selection by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America, Barlow was also the Missouri Soccer Coaches Association Class 3 Player of the Year. He concluded his junior year with 58 goals and 28 assists in his prep soccer career.
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Parkway South’s Nick Jones has signed a letter of intent to play at the University of Wisconsin – Madison.
Jones played for Parkway South his first three years of high school but opted not to play high school as a senior and instead played U.S. Soccer Development Academy. He has proven himself at the Academy level, impressing coaches across the country. He had 30 coaches interested in him when recruiting began three years ago.
“Wisconsin has always been known for their academics. They have an outstanding business school,” Jones said. “Athletically, from day one of recruiting the soccer coaches have been very welcoming as if like family, when it comes to the soccer program and university.
“As soon as I stepped on campus, I loved its spacious design and its location right on the lake.”