Blue Springs’ Daniel Lewis still has a wrestling career at the University of Missouri in front of him, but he and two other area seniors get to put on the singlet and headgear one more time in high school.
Lewis, William Chrisman’s Josh Wallace and Blue Springs South’s Wyatt Parker are among the Missouri representatives in next week’s 22nd-annual Missouri vs. Kansas Metro Classic Wrestling Dual. The event, which matches many of the metro area’s seniors from Kansas and Missouri, is 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Kansas City Kansas Community College Field House.
Lewis, who is one of 24 four-time state champions in Missouri prep history and went 46-0 this season, is scheduled to wrestle at 152 pounds, one class below where he won his last state title (160). He is pared against St. James Academy state champion Andrew Tujague (47-7), one of six bouts featuring two state champs.
Wallace, who competed much of the season at 182 and placed third at state in Class 4 (48-4 record), will be at 170 against Shawnee Mission Northwest’s LaPhonso McKinnis (43-6, 2nd at state). Parker (43-7, 6th) is at 182 against Topeka’s Austin Tillman (31-2, 3rd). Three of Parker’s seven losses this season came to Wallace.
Oak Grove coach Bobbe Lowe, whose Panthers have won two straight and three of the last four Class 2 team titles, is one of the Missouri coaches, along with Park Hill’s Jeff Davis and Staley’s Gary Mayabb. Lowe also coached in the event in 2011.
“It’s a good deal,” he said. “The last time we did it, we had a couple Oak Grove kids on the team. Last year they asked me to do it, but I had some family things I was dealing with. It’s fun and entertaining.”
Lowe had some possibilities for the Missouri team this season, mainly Panther state champion Bryce Mercer (145) and state placers Tyler Brown and Preston Airington, but Missouri simply had some better options, Lowe said.
“Bryce and Tyler lost to kids on the team,” he said. “You definitely want to put the best team out there.”
Lewis is one of the 16 state champions scheduled to compete (as of Wednesday), and six others were state runners-up. The 145-pound bout has four-time champ Tagen Lambotte of Rossville (Kan.) against Kearney three-time champ Grant Leeth. All told, the scheduled competitors have 1,209 wins and just 93 losses this season.
Proceeds from the dual benefit scholarships for wrestlers and Central Missouri State University and Fort Hays State University. Discounted tickets can be purchased in Missouri at:
• Raytown-Lee’s Summit Community Credit Union locations (10021 E. 66th Terr., Raytown 64133; 504 SW 3rd Street, Lee’s Summit 64063; 815 7 Highway, Blue Springs 64014).
• Jay Greco Farmer’s Insurance (1040 NW South Outer Rd., Blue Springs 64015).