Humboldt’s Goodner, Watts qualify for state tournament

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Sports

February 18, 2019 - 11:17 AM

Cub senior David Watts, left, poses on the podium after finishing first in the 3-2-1A 285-pound regional tournament in Fredonia on Saturday.

FREDONIA — Two Humboldt Cub wrestlers qualified for state on Saturday. 

Despite the fact that both  are seniors, each will be heading to state with different histories.

For Dagen Goodner, it’s his third trip to the state tournament. Goodner finished Saturday as runner-up in the 195-pound class at the 3-2-1A Regional Tournament in Fredonia. 

At 285 pounds, David Watts is in his first full wrestling season. Watts won a regional title at Saturday’s meet. 

The state meet in Hays will represent Humboldt’s fourth full season in existence. 

The Cubs had five wrestlers compete at the regional tournament led by the aforementioned Watts and Goodner. 

Watts was dominant all day starting with a pin of Cherryvale’s Bryce Sallee, Flinthills’ Austin Mantanona and Chaparral’s Jaden Eslinger. All of those came in the first period. 

Those dominant performances earned him a trip to state. In the first place match, Watts ended up getting an injury default win over Fredonia’s Bryar Hebb. 

Goodner started off strong, pinning Garden Plain’s John Nowak in a minute, before really having to gut out a 5:32 pin of Wyatt Gillman in the 195-pound semifinal match. 

In the finals, Douglass’ Zachary Dressler proved to be too much as the fellow senior pinned Goodner in 1:03.

Those two seniors were almost joined by a third, 160-pound Reid Barnett. 

After a first-round bye, Barnett lost in a battle to eventual regional champion, Eureka’s Garrison Spoonts.

After another bye, Barnett rebounded with a win over Douglass’ Charles Pearson. 

Barnett was eliminated for the tournament just a win away from qualifying for state. Whitewater-Remington’s Hagen Taylor pinned him in 2:16. 

The Cubs’ two freshmen — 145-pound Ethan Doepke and 170-pound William Todd — went 0-2 in the tournament before being eliminated. 

The state tournament kicks off at 10 a.m. Friday at Gross Memorial Coliseum in Hays. 

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