SALINA — The Bethel College competitive cheer squad won the inaugural Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference championships Friday at Mabee Arena in Salina.
Bethel won the title last year, but last year’s title was an invitational. This season, the sport was elevated to a full conference championship.
Bethel posted a score of 72.50, followed by Sterling at 65.85, Tabor at 62.26, Kansas Wesleyan at 57.36 and Saint Mary at 44.85. Ottawa competed as an exhibition entry.
"We had a pretty solid performance with just a few minor flaws," Bethel coach Joseph Gogus said. "I'm excited to see them do so well and be able to grab the first official conference championship in the sport. We'll have a couple weeks to work out any kinks, and then it's off to regionals.”
The title is the first KCAC title for any Bethel team this school year.
Four members of the team were named All-Star honorable mentions — Kendra Gonzales, a junior from Minneapolis; Justin Haflich, a senior from Pretty Prairie; Blatne Stump, a freshman from Crook, Colo.; and Michaela Stevens, a freshman from Choctaw, Okla. Stevens finished .09 points shy of earning All-America honors.
Gogus was named KCAC coach of the year.
"I'm humbled to be honored with this award," Gogus said. "Our teams did something a bit different from other sports, in that the coaches consulted with their teams on who they should vote for. I think that speaks volumes to the difference in how our sport interacts with each other as a group, and the dynamic of the coach-to-coompetitor relationships."
Bethel will compete Feb. 25 at the NAIA Southwest Regionals at Saint Gregory’s University in Shawnee, Okla. The top finishing teams advance to the NAIA Nationals, which also have been elevated from invitational to championship status this year.
8th at state
McPHERSON — Newton High School wrestler Delaney Cowden placed eighth at the Kansas Girls’ High School Championships Saturday in McPherson.
Cowden finished 2-3 in the 120-126 weight class.
Cowden opened with an 8-6 overtime win over Janae Spaich of McPherson and then pinned Montana Grahem of Jefferson West in 1:30. Cowden fell to Kaleigh Marbut of McPherson 9-6 and finished pool matches with a 9-6 loss to Megan Manning of McPherson.
In the seventh-place match, Cowden dropped an 8-5 decision to Gracie Mann of Spring Hill.
compete at CKL
PRATT — The Hesston Swathers placed eighth and the Halstead Dragons placed ninth Saturday at the Central Kansas League wrestling championships in Pratt.
Pratt won the title at 170.5 points, followed by Hoisington at 165, Larned at 97, Smoky Valley at 89, Nickerson at 57, Lyons at 52, Hillsboro at 33.5, Hesston at 30 and Halstead at 18.
Hesston was led by Matt Whitsitt at 160 pounds, taking second at 4-1. After sweeping his pool matches and winning in the semifinals, Whitsitt was pinned by Sean Urban of Hoisington in 2:45.
Jason Hecht placed fourth at 113 pounds at 2-3. Michael Friesen finished fourth at 120 pounds at 0-3. Tyle Bachman finished fourth at 126 pounds at 1-3. David Merchant finished fourth at 145 pounds at 2-3. Alex Koehn finished fourth at 220 pounds at 2-3.
Ethan Parrott finished fifth at heavyweight at 0-4.
Carter Wingfield finished sixth at 138 pounds at 0-5. Austin Griffin finished sixth at 152 pounds at 0-5.
“Once again we were short handed this week,” Hesston coach David Broadfoot said. “We competed with just one of our seniors and a bunch of young guns who really got an education today. Once again we had guys finish where they were seeded before the tournament began, so we need to work on getting an upset here and there. Matt Whitsitt was probably the most consistent wrestler for us. He wrestled very tough to earn his runner-up medal. David Merchant, Alex Koehn, and Jason Hecht got some solid wins and will need to again next week as we prepare for the regional tournament at Southeast of Saline.”
Halstead had just two wrestlers. Tony Morris finished second at 170 pounds, finishing 3-0 in pool matches and winning in the semifinals. In the finals, Morris was pinned by Logan Baird of Pratt in 3:51.
Lane Boswell finished seventh at 160 pounds at 0-3.
Both Hesston and Halstead compete Friday and Saturday in the Class 3-2-1A regionals in Gypsum.
Central Kansas League
Saturday at Pratt
Team scores — Pratt 170.5, Hoisington 165, Larned 97, Smoky Valley 89, Nickerson 57, Lyons 52, Hillsboro 33.5, Hesston 30, Halstead 18.
113 — 4. Jason Hecht (2-3): W Inigo Barrena Carpio (Hoisington) 2:26; L Raymond Johnston (Hillsboro) :43; L Braydon Lemuz (Larned) 3:09; W Camdon Nickelson (Pratt) 1:11; L Tre Garcia (Nickerson) 6-3.
120 — 4. Michael Friesen (0-3): L Kristopher Nolde (Larned) 2:22; L Chris Goans (Lyons) :37; L Dylan Carrier (Hoisington) 1:49.
126 — 4. Tyler Bachman (1-3): L Chase Pywell (Smoky Valley) 2:53; L Hunter Fitzpatrick (Larned) 2:59; L Brayan Balderrama (Pratt) 1:05; W Oscar Jaime (Lyons) forfeit.
138 — 6. Carter Wingfield (0-5): L Jayden Raigoza (Nickerson) 2:28; L Denzale Clark (Lyons) :17; L Kadence Riner (Pratt) :33; L Noah Lackey (Smoky Valley) :47; L Dustin Edmonson (Hoisington) 3:27.
145 — 4. David Merchant (2-3): L Travis King (Hillsboro) 8-6 OT; W Derek Roadhouse (Pratt) 14-2 maj.dec.; W Noah Salazar (Nickerson) 3:02; L Jonathan Ball (Hoisington) :57; L Nick Karber (Smoky Valley) 4-2.
152 — 6. Austin Griffin (0-5): L Christopher Ball (Hoisington) :39; L Dylan Stewart (Nickerson) :45; L Nick Lucas (Pratt) :36; L Wes Koch (Larned) :40; L Matthew Adams (Smoky Valley) :53.
160 — 2. Matt Whitsitt (4-1) W Donovan McAbee (Pratt) 1:10; W Lane Flaming (Hillsboro) 1:07; W Trevor Weaver (Lyons) 6-4 maj.dec. SF. W Jarin Gomez (Nickerson) :58. F. L Sean Urban (Hoisington) 2:45.
220 — 4. Alex Koehn (2-3): W Luis Contreras (Lyons) :52; W Trace Scott (Smoky Valley) 2:32; L Justin Bradley (Hoisington) :38. SF. L Hunter Huber (Pratt) 2:27. 3rd. L Jeremiah Slattery (Larned) 5:02.
HWT — 5. Ethan Parrott (0-4): L Sevren Hance (Pratt) 2:45; L Edgar Garcia (Larned) :34; L Nate Grosland (Smoky Valley) :51; L Landen Urban (Hoisington) :11.
160 — 7. Lane Boswell (0-3): L Jarin Gomez (Nickerson) 12-10; L Sean Urban (Hoisington) injury default. CSF. L Donovan McAbee (Pratt) injury default. 7th. bye.
170 — 2. Tony Morris (4-1): W Jaden Priest (Hillsboro) :54; W Cort Elliott (Smoky Valley) :18; W Wyatt Pedigo (Hoisington) 2:00. SF. W Chandler Eaton (Nickerson) 3:55. F. L Logan Baird (Pratt) 3:51.
0-5 in opener
FORT WORTH — The Bethel College softball team opened the season with an 0-5 start at the NAIA Cowtown Classic Friday and Saturday in Fort Worth.
Bethel opened with an 8-2 loss to Concordia (Neb.) in the opener. Concordia broke the game open with five runs in the third inning. Leslie Hoffman went four for four hitting for Bethel. Kiera Broehl finished two for four with an RBI. Katie Schrag also drove in a run. Madison McDowell took the loss for Bethel.
Bethel lost to Doane 18-8 in a game called after five innings on the eight-run rule. Doane broke the game open with seven runs in the top of the fourth. Doane had four home runs. Hoffman finished three for three hitting with an RBI. Broehl was two for three with an RBI. Samantha Karten finished two for two with an RBI. Alexis Wilson drove in two runs. McDowell was charged with the loss.
Bethel fell to Morningside 4-0, held to two hits in the game. Morningside scored two runs in the first and two more in the fourth. Abbie Hutton took the loss. Rylie Scudder struck out three in three innings.
Bethel fell to Central Methodist 9-0 in five innings. Central Methodist scored all nine runs in the first two innings. Bethel was held to three hits. McDowell took the loss for Bethel.
The Threshers closed out tourney play with a 6-5 loss to Texas Wesleyan. Bethel led 5-4 after five innings, but gave up a run in the bottom of the sixth to tie and a run in the seventh.
Trista Rich hit a three-run home run for the Threshers. Broehl went three for four hitting with an RBI. Schrag went two for four. Scudder struck out six in 3 2-3 innings, taking the loss.
Bethel returns to play Feb. 24 at home against Briar Cliff.
vs. Concordia (Neb.)
Harpst, Clear (W) 3 and Huff; McDowell (L), Scudder 5, Hutton 7 and Schrag.
Feagler, Shniderson (W) 4 and Garza; Hutton, Scudder 3, McDowell (L) 4 and Schrag. HR — D: Valadez, Garza, Stearns, Hamilton.
Ras (W), Henks 7 and Landgren; Hutton (L), Scudder 5 and Schrag.
vs. Central Methodist
McDowell (L), Scudder 2 and Schrag; Enke (W) and Foster.
vs. Texas Wesleyan
Hutton, Scudder (L) 4 and Schrag; Rosenberry, Stewart (W) 6 and Gunter. HR — B: Rich (1).
HESSTON — The Hesston College baseball team claimed four wins over the Bethany junior varsity Friday and Saturday at Oswald Field in Hesston.
Friday, Hesston won 3-0 and 8-3. Saturday, Hesston won 9-8 and 9-3.
In the first game of the series, Hesston scored all three runs in the first inning. Joel Ogletree drove in two runs. Drake Sturgeon added an RBI. Jacques Palmer went two for three hitting. Jacob Harris pitched three innings, walking six and striking out four. Carter Hohn finished the game for the win, striking out five.
Down 3-0 in the second game of the series, Hesston scored seven runs in the fourth inning and added a run in the sixth. Isaiah Martinez went two for four hitting, driving in two runs. Palmer, Drew Aldana, Ogletree, Jonathan Law and Dallas Johnson each added an RBI. Jordan Gesling went six innings for the win, allowing three unearned runs on three hits with four walks and six strikeouts. Dylan Schoknecht struck out one batter in the seventh.
In the first game Sunday, Hesston jumped out to a 9-5 lead through four innings. Bethany added three runs in the sixth. Aldana went three for four hitting with two RBIs. Palmer went two for four hitting. Charles Elam went two for two hitting. Martinez drove in a run. Ogletree drove in two runs. Law threw 5 2-3 innings for the win, allowing six earned runs on eight hits with seven walks and five strikeouts. Sam Carrillo finished the game for the save.
In the final game of the series, Hesston scored three runs in the fifth inning and three more in the sixth to snap a 3-3 tie. Jeremy Deckinger went three for three hitting with four RBIs. Jake Salinas went three for four hitting. Elam went two for two hitting with two RBIs. Jayden Banks hit a solo home run.
Andrew Huckaby threw three innings of relief for the win, striking out three. Carlos Rodriguez went four innings, allowing three runs on two hits with eight walks and seven strikeouts.
Hesston is 5-5 and plays at 1 p.m. Wednesday at Northern Oklahoma-Enid.
PRATT — The Hesston College softball team opened the season by splitting four games during the weekend.
Saturday at Garden City Community College, Hesston fell 6-1 and 5-3. Sunday at Pratt Community College, Hesston won 9-6 in eight innings and 11-10.
Hesston’s stats against Garden City were not posted.
In the first game against Pratt, Hesston scored six runs in the second inning and three in the top of the eighth. Ally Steiner went three for five hitting. Briana Baca went two for four. Dezz Bretado drove in two runs. Sierrah Long and Ashley Yasin each drove in one run.
Yasin pitched a complete game, allowing five earned runs on 12 hits with two walks and seven strikeouts.
Down 5-1 in the second game against Pratt, Hesston scored six runs in the fifth inning, three in the sixth and one in the seventh. Pratt added four runs in the bottom of the seventh, but couldn’t get the score tied. Steiner, Kayleigh Johnson and Kendall Richardson each went two for four hitting. Bailyn Piecewicz, Jocelyn Chavez, Steiner, Jerrica Brown and Long each drove in a run.
Chantel Prucella pitched five innings for the win, allowing four earned runs on 12 hits with two walks. Brown finished the game for the save, allowing four hits and two earned runs.
Hesston hosts Central (Neb.) Community College at 3 p.m. today.