Senior won four of five bouts in Saturday's (Jan. 5, 2019) Crossroads Duals tournament at Cameron to improve to 21-2 on season. Now has 101 career bout wins, 10th-most in Chillicothe history
Lavery Jones joins CHS wrestling ‘century club’
CAMERON — Senior upper-lightweight Lavery Jones became the 11th member of Chillicothe High School’s “century club” for career bout wins Saturday, winning four of his five bouts during the inaugural Crossroads Duals tournament.
With those four triumphs – one of five 2018-19 Hornets to go 4-1 in the tourney, Jones improved his season record to 21-2 and upped his career wins count to 101, inching past Kyler Sewell into the No. 10 spots in all-time wins as a CHS grappler. The second-leading winner on last year’s squad with 41 bout triumphs – tied for eighth-most in a Chillicothe season, Jones figures to ascend to the No. 7 spot in career victories soon. He is only two behind Bryce Larson for ninth, four back of Matt Shaffer for eighth, and six behind Stephen Quinn in seventh.
Barring injury or other problem, Jones figures to climb to sixth before the season is out. Bobby Crabtree currently owns that spot with 117 wins. He has an outside shot at catching former 2016-17 teammate Dean Adkins III for fifth at 133.
He’ll have a chance to catch Larson tonight when the Hornets participate in a double-dual with Richmond and Carrollton at Carrollton. The first match will begin at 5:30 p.m.
Jones’ 4-1 performance at 132 pounds at Cameron Saturday was one of four such efforts by Hornets. Joining him in producing results that put them on the tourney’s second team, Chillicothe head coach Chad Smith reports, were Matt Callen at 220, Dawson Wheeler at 152-160, Keegan Valdez at 285, and Colten Sewell at 138.
Sewell, who swapped weight classes with Jones during the nearly-month-long break between competitions, sustained his first loss in 22 bouts this season when – like all of his teammates – he was defeated by a foe from a west suburban Omaha, Neb., school, Millard South. Sewell dropped his bout by 11-4 decision, but rebounded to pin Grant Thompson of Cameron in 3:39 for his team-lead-sharing (with Jones) 21st victory of 2018-19.
Along the way Saturday, the junior raised his season takedowns total to 116, already fourth-most in a year in CHS history. He soon should pass Andrew Ripley (131) for third, leaving only Hornets wrestling legend and 2-times state champion Wyatt Pickering ahead of him, “Pick” had 196 takedowns (in only 40 bouts) as a 1997-98 junior, then obliterated his own mark with 294 in his perfect 41-0 senior year.
Team-wise in the rugged tourney at Cameron last weekend, Chillicothe pushed its season record in dual matches to 13-4 with triumphs over Clinton, Osage, and Savannah before being shut out by Millard South and losing to Cameron 48-32.
“Overall, I think we wrestled well for the first meet back after Christmas break,” Smith reflected. “We have a list of the things to work on.”
The Chillicothe coach, a Nebraskan himself and former prep state champion there, said his squad saw plenty of top-caliber competition in the tourney.
“I am familiar with Millard South. (It) has had one of the best programs In the state in the biggest classification in Nebraska for a long time. It is good for us to go against elite talent from a much-bigger school every once in a while to help us improve,” he states.
“We also got to see two other tough wrestling schools from the (Class 2 District 3) in Osage and Clinton that could have possible state-tournament matchup” implications.
The Hornets actually out-pointed Cameron 32-30 in the 11 bouts actually wrestled, but Chillicothe was open at three weights – 120, 170, and 182 pounds, giving the Dragons 18 free points and the win. Cameron edged the Hornets 39-34 in Chillicothe earlier this season in a match in which the Hornets had the full lineup and the Dragons had two “opens.”
For what Smith indicated were precautionary health reasons, usual CHS 182-pounder Isaac Washburn competed only in one bout, winning by decision against Clinton, and Donald McCracken was limited to only three bouts at 170, going 1-2.
“We just decided to hold them out of the lineup, trying to get healthy for more important meets coming down the line,” the coach revealed.
Of the handful of Hornets who won four times at Cameron, Sewell was the most dominant, getting three wins by fall and one by decision. Jones delivered two pins and a decision, in addition to one forfeit. Wheeler, who competed at 152 four times and 160 once, had a win by fall at each weight and two decision wins at 152. Callen had a win from each column – fall, technical fall, major decision, and regular decision – and Valdez had a pin, a decision, and two forfeits.
Going 3-1 during the tournament was Kaleb Mullikin at 160, twice gaining wins by fall, in addition to receiving one forfeit.
Wrestling three times at the lightest weight (106) and once at 113, Sheldon Rader went 3-2 with two pins and a forfeit along the way. Spencer Cairns, who also split time at the two lightest weights, finished 2-1 with one win by fall and one by forfeit.
Other Hornets who competed and their overall records for the tourney were: Aidan Zimmerman (113/120) 2-2, Gage Leamer (126) 1-4, Jake Chapman (145) 1-4, McCracken (170) 1-2, and Evan Loucks (195) 0-5.
In Chillicothe’s four round-robin duals within its 5-teams division of the 10-teams tournament, it defeated Clinton 45-24, shaded Osage 40-36, and dominated fellow Midland Empire Conference member Savannah 65-18.
The loss to Millard (Neb.) South came by a 76-0 margin with the Nebraskans posting eight wins by fall in addition to receiving two forfeits. There was one very close bout in that match. At heavyweight, Valdez lost 1-0.
Those four results put the Hornets in the third-place match against another MEC team, Cameron. In it, with the action starting with the 106-pounds division, the Dragons won three of the first four bouts by fall and the other by forfeit to take a commanding 24-0 lead.
Chillicothe had the best of the rest of the match, but, with two “open” classes yet to come, almost would have to sweep the last eight contested bouts to prevail.
It came relatively close, getting wins by fall from Jones, Sewell, Mullikin, and Valdez, a technical fall from Callen, and a Wheeler decision. However, when the 152-pounds bout went to Wheeler only by a 9-3 decision, it clinched the victory for Cameron even with six weight classes remaining.
While the CHS boys’ varsity was competing at Cameron Saturday, the fledgling varsity Lady Hornets had three entrants in a girls’ tournament at Kearney, held in conjunction with the annual junior-varsity tourney there.
None of the three Lady Hornets – Jordan Hicks at 187 pounds, Madisen Hays at 167, or Karyna Ireland at 126 – managed to win. Each lost twice by fall.