The McPherson Middle School wrestling team concluded a successful 2012 season Thursday night in front of a home crowd, as the Bullpups wrestled four teams in the McPherson Invitational.
The Pups finished 2-2 on the evening, winning against Salina Lakewood 42-39 and Great Bend 43-34. They lost 49-32 to Salina South and 70-18 to Hays.
Individually, Austin Eldredge went 4-0 on the day at 100 pounds, winning by fall in three of his matches. Elredge finished the year undefeated at 17-0.
“What was most impressive is that he did not give up a single point to any opponent all season,” MMS coach Chris Allen said. “He scored a whopping 80 team points in duals and an additional 23.5 points at a tournament to cap his eighth- grade season.”
Also finishing undefeated Thursday was Dylan Baldwin at 165 pounds. He finished the season with an 11-3 record. Brice Kasting at 105, Gage Herron at 115, TK Mukwindidza at 127 and Jared Ruth at 180 all went 2-1 on the day. Brynton Crew and Shaden Swaim went 2-2 at 85 and 95 pounds, respectively.
In all, 10 Bullpups finished the season with winning records for MMS. Crew went 6-3, Swaim finished at 11-6, Kasting went 13-5 on the year and Herron went 6-4. Mukwindidza finished with a 9-4 record, while Ruth had a 2-1 varsity record and an 8-3 JV record on the year.
“I’m really proud of the kids and how they competed hard in every single match all season long,” Allen, who is in his first year as head coach, said. “My goal was to improve from our first match of the year to our last match of the year, and I think they did that.”
Allen, who stepped up to the head coaching job after six years as an assistant, feels settled into the new role after having his first season under his belt.
“It’s different,” he said. “A lot more that goes into it as a head coach. As an assistant, you just have to focus on coaching. As head coach, you have a little more discipline to deal with, things of that nature.”
In junior varsity action at the McPherson Invitational, 11 Bullpups competed in exhibition matches.
Of those, six went undefeated on the day. Bailey Yarbourgh and Andrew Powell went 2-0 at 110 and 115 pounds respectively. Tyson Stites at 105, Kollin Goering at 105, Austin Batson at 110 and Brenan Hoppes at 120 all went 1-0 on the day.
The invitational did take a somber turn toward the end, as Salina South wrestler Allan Medrano was transported by ambulance after suffering a possible head or neck injury during a match. No update on his condition was available.