Kuenzel, Lasky Lead Union to 12th in Class 3 Standings - The Missourian: Sports

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Kuenzel, Lasky Lead Union to 12th in Class 3 Standings

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Posted: Wednesday, February 26, 2014 11:45 am

With one state champion (Dalton Kuenzel) and a sixth-place finisher (Joe Lasky), it was a year for the record books in the Union High School wrestling program.

The Wildcats scored 42 points to place 12th in Class 3 an the MSHSAA Wrestling Championships, which concluded Saturday night at the Mizzou Arena in Columbia.

“I thought we wrestled great at the state tournament,” Union Head Coach Justin Cranmer said. “If you would have told me before the season started that we would have a state champion and another medalist at the end of the year I would have been a very happy coach.”

Kuenzel hopes this year’s state run can help to inspire younger wrestlers.

“I think this is going to be a confidence booster for all of the younger kids coming up,” Kuenzel said. “It shows that no matter where you start, you can always finish higher than where you began.”

Lasky said the program is on solid ground.

“We had a great team last year,” Lasky said. “We graduated a lot of good seniors. We came back this year and brought in good freshmen. We’re definitely a program on the rise. We’ve got a lot of young kids coming up. We have solid freshmen and sophomores.”

Both Kuenzel and Lasky are scheduled to wrestle in the senior national tournament in Virginia Beach, Va., March 27-30. Kuenzel will compete in the East-West All-Star Meet in Edwardsville, Ill., March 24.

Union had four qualified wrestlers and three who actually competed. Two of those three ended on the podium.

Kuenzel (182) is Union’s second state champion. Mat Machelett won the Class 3A heavyweight title in 1992, edging Neosho’s Russell Lewis, 5-3, to claim the crown.

“Dalton could not have wrestled any better at the state meet,” Cranmer said. “He scored the maximum amount of team points allowed at the state tournament because he pinned all four of his opponents.”

The last Union wrestler to compete in a title match was Jimmy Barnhart (215), who finished second in Class 2 at his weight class in 2009.

This season, Kuenzel capped off a 46-2 season Saturday night with his fourth pin in a row, a 3:05 win over Winnetonka’s Markel Fluker.

Near the midway point of the match, Kunezel trailed 3-0 when he found an opening and quickly put Fluker on his back for the victory.

To reach the finals, Kuenzel:

• Pinned Branson’s Christian Robertson in 2:11;

• Pinned Grain Valley’s Joey Sodano in 0:45; and

• Pinned Willard’s Hunter Yeargan in 5:20.

In the semifinal match, Kuenzel was involved in a close match until he found an opening and earned the pin.

A story on Kuenzel can be found elsewhere in this section.

Lasky (220) finished off a comeback season, earning a state medal by finishing sixth. It was a far better ending for Lasky than last year’s state tournament, when he was knocked out with a broken ankle.

“Last year, I broke my ankle,” Lasky said. “This year, I was pretty excited. My goal the whole season was to medal here. I got through and made it.”

Cranmer credited Lasky for picking up key wins to make the podium.

“Joe wrestled amazing at both the district and state tournament,” Cranmer said. “He beat a very tough kid from Staley first round. He lost to the eventual state champion from Hannibal in the quarterfinals but bounced back and won two tough matches to get to the medal rounds.”

After starting the season at 285, Lasky trimmed down to his fighting weight in the 220-pound weight class and recorded a 32-10 season.

“I wrestled at 220 last year, so I ended up cutting back down,” Lasky said. “I started the season at 250. I had to cut weight over all of Christmas break. It was terrible, but it was definitely worth it to be on the podium with some hardware around my neck.”

In his state opener, Lasky pinned Staley’s Logan Shinneman in 5:52.

But, in the quarterfinals, Lasky dropped an 8-0 decision to Hannibal’s Kyle Muehring, the eventual state champion.

Going into the wrestleback bracket, Lasky then pinned Chaminade’s Craman Mays in 2:23 and earned a 6-4 decision over Marshfield’s Micah Ragsdale to reach the medal rounds.

In the fourth-round wrestlebacks Saturday morning, Neosho’s Ben Elledge edged Lasky, 6-5. Elledge placed fourth.

Kearney’s Tyler Horton pinned Lasky in the fifth-place bout in 1:43.

“I’ve only been wrestling for two years,” Lasky said. “I was lucky I was able to get here with my coach helping after only wrestling for two years.”

Lasky is a three-sport standout with the Wildcats.

“I love wrestling for Union,” Lasky said. “I also do football and track. I love the town and all of the people in it.”

Lasky indicated he’s looking for the opportunity to play football in college, but would consider an offer

Two Union freshmen also got to experience the state meet.

Freshman Dylan Ahern (170) went 1-2 in the state meet to finish the season at 26-20.

“Dylan Ahern also wrestled well,” Cranmer said. “He won a match in the first round of wrestlebacks and I think he learned a lot from the experience and is even more hungry to win a state medal next year.”

Ahern opened with a 12-4 major decision setback against Dalton Lewis of Kearney, who wound up taking sixth.

Ahern knocked out Hannibal’s Austin Hawes, 13-8.

The meet finished for Ahern in a 33-second pin against Ft. Zumwalt North’s Levi Kessels, the third-place finisher in the weight class.

Union’s other freshman, Dawson Sickmeier (106) officially forfeited his two state matches to Willard’s Nikolas Chavez and Ladue’s Justin Espinosa.

Sickmeier (30-16) suffered a concussion in the third-place bout of the district tournament the previous Saturday in Farmington and was not cleared to compete at the state meet.


Area Scoreboard


Friday, Sept. 19

*Ft. Zumwalt S at Washington    7 p.m.

Cardinal Ritter at Borgia    7 p.m.

*St. Clair at Union    7 p.m.

*Pacific at Sullivan    7 p.m.

*Hermann at Owensville    7 p.m.

Ash Grove at St. James    7 p.m.

Cuba at Brentwood    7 p.m.

*St. Charles West at Warrenton    7 p.m.

South Callaway at Wright City     7 p.m.

Friday, Sept. 12

*Ft. Zumwalt North 49, Washington 0

*Borgia 35, St. Dominic 0

*Union 27, Pacific 19

*Sullivan 47, St. Clair 21

Hermann 65, Wentzville Liberty 7

*Owensville 29, St. James 28 (OT)

Cuba 22, Windsor 6

*Warrenton 14, St. Charles 6

*Bowling Green 55, Wright City 0

Friday, Sept. 5

Warrenton 14, Washington 6

Borgia 13, Maplewood-Richmond Heights 0 (forfeit)

*Union 32, Sullivan 19

*Pacific 20, St. Clair 18

*Hermann 52, St. James 20

Owensville 35, Cuba 8

*Wright City 36, Montgomery Co. 0

Friday, Aug. 29

Sullivan 30, Washington 8

Borgia 56, Union 13

Ozark 41, St. Clair 0

Potosi 34, Pacific 13

Hermann 54, Cuba 12

Blair Oaks 42, Owensville 0

St. James 36, Houston 18

Warrenton 28, Troy 0

Orchard Farm 36, Wright City 18

Friday, Aug. 22

Washington 26, St. Clair 21

Borgia 48, Owensville 12

Parkway West 49, Union 39

Pacific 28, De Soto 20

Park Hills Central 34, Sullivan 27

St. James 12, Cuba 6

Hermann 61, Montgomery Co 12

Warrenton 26, St. Dominic 23

Trinity 28, Wright City 24


Tuesday, Sept. 16

*Borgia at Notre Dame    4:30 p.m.

*Washington at Ft. Zumwalt N    4:30 p.m.

*Union at Owensville    4:30 p.m.

*Pacific at New Haven    4:30 p.m.

*St. James at St. Clair    4:30 p.m.

*Hermann at Sullivan    4:30 p.m.

Wednesday, Sept. 17

Washington at Warrenton    4:30 p.m.

Sullivan at Northwest    4:30 p.m.

Thursday, Sept. 18

*St. Dominic at Borgia    3:45 p.m.

*Union at Hermann    4:30 p.m.

*St. Clair at New Haven    4:30 p.m.

*St. James at Pacific    4:30 p.m.

*Owensville at Sullivan    4:30 p.m.

Friday, Sept. 19

Union at Ft. Zumwalt N Tny    TBA

South Callaway at New Haven    5 p.m.

Saturday, Sept. 20

Union at Ft. Zumwalt N Tny    TBA

St. James Tny    TBA

Monday, Sept. 22

*Washington at Ft. Zumwalt S    4:30 p.m.

Union at North County    4:30 p.m.

Warrenton at St. Clair    4:30 p.m.

Principia at Sullivan    4:30 p.m.

Hermann at Cuba    4:30 p.m.

Owensville at Cuba    4:30 p.m.

St. James at Bourbon    4:30 p.m.

Tuesday, Sept. 23

*Borgia at Duchesne    4:30 p.m.

*Holt at Washington    4:30 p.m.

*Pacific at St. Clair    4:30 p.m.

*Owensville at New Haven    4:30 p.m.

*Hermann at St. James    4:30 p.m.


Tuesday, Sept. 16

*Sullivan at St. Clair    4:30 p.m.

*Washington at Ft. Zumwalt E    5 p.m.

*New Haven at Union    5:30 p.m.

*Pacific at Hermann    5:30 p.m.

*Owensville at St. James    5:30 p.m.

Wednesday, Sept. 17

Washington at Duchesne    5 p.m.

Thursday, Sept. 18

*St. Clair at Owensville    5 p.m.

*Union at Pacific    5:30 p.m.

*Hermann at New Haven    5:30 p.m.

*St. James at Sullivan    5:30 p.m.

O’Fallon Christian at Borgia    6:30 p.m.

Washington at Gateway Match Up    TBA

Friday, Sept. 19

Eagle Ridge at Crosspoint    5:15 p.m.

Providence at Crosspoint    7:15 p.m.

Washington at Gateway Match Up    TBA

Saturday, Sept. 20

New Haven Round Robin    9 a.m.

ECC at Wentworth    1 p.m.

ECC vs. Graceland JV (Wentworth)    3 p.m.

Washington at Gateway Match Up    TBA

St. Clair at Seckman Tny    TBA

Monday, Sept. 22

St. Clair at Salem    5 p.m.

Bourbon at Sullivan    5:30 p.m.

Dixon at St. James    5:30 p.m.

Hermann Tournament    TBA

Tuesday, Sept. 23

Cuba at St. James    5:30 p.m.

Crosspoint at Bethel    5:30 p.m.

Crosspoint vs. Thomas Jefferson    6:30 p.m.

Hermann Tournament    TBA

Boys Soccer

Tuesday, Sept. 16

Crosspoint at Fulton St. Albans    4:30 p.m.

Tolton Catholic at Borgia    5:30 p.m.

*Washington at Ft. Zumwalt E    6 p.m.

Wednesday, Sept. 17

*St. Louis at ECC    4:30 p.m.

Union at Affton    5 p.m.

St. Clair at De Soto    5 p.m.

Thursday, Sept. 18

*St. Clair at St. James    5 p.m.

Dixon at Sullivan    5 p.m.

Borgia at Trinity    6:15 p.m.

Friday, Sept. 19

Eagle Ridge at Crosspoint    4:30 p.m.

Tolton at Fulton SA    5 p.m.

Saturday, Sept. 20

*Ft. Zumwalt S at Washington    10 a.m.

Crowder at ECC    2 p.m.

Monday, Sept. 22

Hillsboro at Union    5 p.m.

CYC Tny    TBA

Tuesday, Sept. 23

*Fulton SA at Thomas Jefferson    4:30 p.m.

North County at Union    5 p.m.

*St. James at Pacific    5 p.m.

*Borgia at St. Dominic    6:15 p.m.

CYC Tny    TBA

Cross Country

Thursday, Sept. 18

St. Clair at Lutheran North    4 p.m.

New Haven, St. James at Steelville Inv    4 p.m.

Saturday, Sept. 20

Festus Inv.    9 a.m.

Hermann at Fulton Inv    9 a.m.

Thursday, Sept. 25

Washington at Rolla Inv    4 p.m.

Union, Owensville, St. James at Belle Inv    4 p.m.

Saturday, Sept. 27

Hancock Inv    8:30 a.m.

Pacific at Viburnum Inv    10:30 a.m.

Monday, Sept. 29

St. Clair at Elsberry Inv    4 p.m.

St. James at Dixon    4 p.m.

Girls Golf

Tuesday, Sept. 16

*Borgia at St. Dominic    3:30 p.m.

Wednesday, Sept. 17

Duchesne at Borgia    3:30 p.m.

Thursday, Sept. 18

Ft. Zumwalt S at Washington    3:30 p.m.

Borgia at AAA Meet, Lutheran SC    TBA

Wednesday, Sept. 24

Washington at GAC Central Meet    TBA

Thursday, Sept. 25

*Duchesne at Borgia    3:30 p.m.

Boys Swimming

Saturday, Sept. 20

Borgia at Ft. Zumwalt W    8:30 p.m.

Monday, Sept. 29

Washington at Ft. Zumwalt South    3:30 p.m.

*Conference Games

Racing News