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Liberal’s McPhail captures 215-lb state title PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 28 February 2011 12:34

• Leader & Times
Liberal High School junior Justin McPhail captured the 215-pound state wrestling championship Saturday in dramatic fashion.
Tied at 1-1 in the final 30 seconds of the third and final round with Gardner-Edgerton’s Kyle Pacheco, McPhail took Pacheco down to take a 3-1 lead. Pacheco reversed McPhail with six seconds left, giving two points to Pacheco, tying things up.
The wrestlers went off the mat, so they restarted with six seconds left, and McPhail needed an escape to win it. But {Pacheco locked his hands. The referees gave McPhail the penalty point, and McPhail captured the state championship. Much to the protest of Gardner-Edgerton’s coaches.
“He got the escape, as well, but the ref didn’t give it to him,” Liberal wrestling coach Michael Pewthers said. “The assistant ref said he would have gotten that, but the other ref said it didn’t matter.”
McPhail beat No. 1-ranked Luke Bean of Kapaun 3-1 in overtime Friday to advance to the championship Saturday. The match was scoreless after one period, but Bean earned a point on an escape in the second round. 
McPhail got a point with an escape the third round to send the match to overtime.  McPhail got a take down in overtime to win 3-1.
McPhail  won a major decision, 9-1, over Matt Baumgartner of Bishop Miege in the semifinals.
Of Liberal’s five state-qualifiers, three won matches in the first round on Friday.
Cody Smith beat Brett Simmons of Topeka Seaman 11-4. Adebayo Braimah pinned Justin Dyer of Shawnee Heights in 3:33.  Lansing's Spencer Blew pinned Ayodole Braimah in 1:08. Lansing's Dillon Scanlon pinned Trenton Wilson in 3:52.
Justin McPhail pinned Emporia's Mike Arreola in 39 seconds.
Smith and Adebayo Braimah lost in the second round. TJ Stokes of Gardner-Edgerton beat Smith 17-1 by technical fall.  Dustin Williams of Gardner-Edgerton beat Adebayo Braimah in the second round, 5-4.
In the consolation round, Keaton Dugan of Bishop Carroll beat Ayodale Braimah in a 13-3 major decision.  Trenton Wilson won his consolation match by fall in 2:02 over Kane Shireman of Gardner-Edgerton.
Overall, Pewthers was pleased with his wrestlers’ performance, considering only two went to state a year ago, and only one of them came back.
At 130 pounds,  Cody Smith went 2-2; at 140,  Adebayo Briamah  went 1-2; at 145, Ayodale Briamah went 0-2.
At 152, Trenton Wilson went 3-3 and placed sixth.
“I never expected  (Wilson) to place sixth,” Pewthers said. “He lost his first match to the kid that got second (Scanlon). Then he won three in a row to end up placing.
“He did an awesome job.”
Adebayo lost by a point to Schreiner, who ended up second in the state at 140 pounds.
“Then he lost by one point to the kid that got third,” Pewthers said.
“They did well, I was really proud of them.”
The Redskins overcame a lot of adversity during the season. Four wrestlers missed the season due to injuries and other issues.
“They would have been there,” Pewthers said. “We could have had eight or nine guys there. I didn’t know how many guys we’d be able to take to state. And taking, five, I was really proud of the guys.”

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