Jastin Robertson picked up a pretty notable accomplishment Saturday afternoon.
The Blue Springs South sophomore won his first varsity tournament and did so in the Lydia's Light/Blue Springs South Tournament, a two-day event that featured 14 teams competing.
Robertson's first-place finish provided a highlight for the host Jaguars that placed fifth, while Lee's Summit North took third in the field. Class 4 Waynesville won the event, while Platte County, ranked No. 3 in Class 3, was second.
Robertson is only in his second year of wrestling and last year the struggles were obvious with him being a newcomer to the sport that many foes start at age 3 or 4.
After picking up four wins in the tournament, he is now 38-8 on the season and has put himself in position for a chance to advance to state in the 113-pound division in the Class 4 District 4 Tournament that starts Feb. 9-10.
Robertson beat Lee's Summit's Lorenzo Turney – who was 25-3 – by a 4-0 decision in the finals.
“It has been great,” Robertson said of the turnaround this season. “I worked hard in the offseason. Last year was my first year wrestling. I put in a lot of work in the summer. I started playing football, but I fell in love with wrestling. I'm trying to get some wins and rank high in districts and go to state.”
He is in a district that currently has three of the top six wrestlers ranked by MissouriWrestling.com and only the top four advance to state, but Robertson said he can't wait for the challenge.
South coach Doug Black has seen a big improvement from Robertson, whose record last year featured less than 10 wins and more than 30 losses – a total flip this winter.
“That was big, his first tournament win ever,” Black said of Robertson, who has placed second twice this year in tournaments. “That is a huge accomplishment for him.”
The Jaguars had two other wrestlers place in the top four – Brady Childers and Carlos Velasquez.
Childers reached the finals in 182 but lost by a pin to Platte County's Dakota Schmidt – ranked No. 3 in his weight class. Childers (45-8) picked up a notable win in the tournament, beating Patrick Broyles of Rockhurst, ranked No. 6, in pool competition.
Velasquez (145) lost 5-2 in the third-place match against Platte County's Nolan Saale.
“It was a good last tournament of the year to get ready for districts,” said Black, whose squad wraps up the regular season Tuesday facing Lee's Summit West. “With your last tuneup before districts, you want to come out injury free and we did that for the most part. We have a lot of little things to clean up and we will get it done. Being a young team, we are still making mistakes and that is costing us in matches and that shouldn't be happening in January.”
The tournament is named after Black's daughter, who wasn't able to be there due to illness, but in the past hands out the medals. Lydia, now 16 and a student at Rock Bridge High School in Columbia, was born blind before having surgery when she was 6, spending six weeks in recovery while in China.
Lee's Summit North had three wrestlers advance to the finals and three others reach the third-place matches, helping the team score 284 points.
Hunter Ross (126), Triston Jones (145) and Logan Thornton (195) all took second place.
Thornton lost a heartbreaker, 5-4, to Andrew Lietold from Waynesville, while Ross lost by a pin to Platte County's Cody Phippen – a two-time defending state champion and an Air Force signee.
Jones lost by a 15-5 major decision to Michael Cassidy of Waynesville, ranked No. 5 in Class 4.
All three Broncos in the third-place matches came out with a victory.
Caden Schweitzer beat Waynesville's Jordan Copple by a pin in 3:55 in the place match, after falling to Robertson in the semifinals. Jaden Duran (138) won by an injury default in the third-place match against Park Hill South's Andrew Mikuls.
Lane Overton (152) beat Waynesville's Mario Garza by a pin after reaching the semifinals.