The St. James wrestling team made the trip to Francis Howell to compete in the Kyle Thrasher Tournament on Friday and Saturday, Jan. 26-27. The tournament was the team's last competition before Districts in a couple of weeks. The Tigers finished in 14th place in the 36 team tournament.
The top finish on the weekend came from Mikey Crocker, who placed third at 132. After a first round bye, Crocker pinned Justin Sanders from Belleville East in just 20 seconds. He then beat Battle's Andrew Shea 6-1 to move into the semifinal. Crocker lost his semifinal match 5-1 to Whitfield's Jeffrey Ditter, which sent him into the consolation bracket. Crocker made quick work of the consolation bracket, winning a rematch with Sanders by tech fall 15-0 before winning another rematch against Shea in the third place match 7-2.
The next highest finish for St. James was Drake Ortiz at 220. Ortiz also had a first round bye, before pinning Jefferson City's Jacob Thornsberry in the second period. Ortiz then won an 8-5 decision over Francis Howell's Nathan Odonohue to advance to the semifinal. Like Crocker, Ortiz lost in the semifinal to a wrestler from Whitfield. William Boldt was able to pin Ortiz with 26 seconds left in the match to send the St. James senior to the consolation bracket. Ortiz went on to win a 6-2 decision over Eureka's Jake McCollum, before getting pinned by Logan Wells from Lindbergh in the third place match.
The last person to place for St. James was a third senior in Thomas Henderson at 138. Henderson got out to a strong start with a 16-1 tech fall win over Max Neuhaus from Hickman before winning an 11-6 decision over Francis Howell's Garrett Woods. Henderson lost his quarterfinal match to Jacob Smith from Francis Howell North on an 11-1 major decision to head to the consolation bracket. The St. James senior cruised to a 16-1 tech fall win over Eureka's Jacob Wuelling before narrowly beating Morgan Potts of Lee's Summit West 1-0. Unfortunately, Henderson was forced to hand over wins in his next two matches on medical forfeits to finish in sixth place.
The remaining Tigers weren't able to place, but still won some matches over the weekend. Ty Lewis had two wins, one of which came via pin, at 126 and Cole Petty won three matches, all of which came on first period pins, at 170. Nick Wilson also earned a win over the weekend with a pin of Nolan Wosczcynski from Alton at 182. Cort Petty was the only other St. James wrestler and he lost both of his matches at 195.
The Tigers are off until Districts, which kicks off Friday, Dec. 9.