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Wyoming Sends 16 Wrestlers to Seniors National Championships in Delaware



CASPER - Kelly Walsh Seniors Dustin Hill, Josh Tolin, Jon Butler, and Jake Bartz are competing at the Seniors National Wrestling Championships in Newark, Delaware at the Bob Carpenter Center on the University of Delaware. The competition which is expected to attract the top 800 high school seniors in the United States, begins on Friday morning and concludes on Sunday evening. Only those high school seniors that have wrestled in their state's respective high school championship finals are eligible for the competition, except for one wild card selection from each state. At this year's 4A State Championship Finals, Hill at 119 and Tolin at 130 were 4A runner-ups, while Bartz won the 4A Individual State Title at 189. Hill was also 6th as a Junior; Tolin was 3rd as a Sophomore, and 6th as a Junior; while Bartz placed 5th as a Junior. Although Butler did not wrestle in the state finals, he is a three time state placer for Kelly Walsh High School, finishing 5th as a sophomore, 5th as a junior, and 4th as a senior, and is wrestling as Wyoming's wild card selection. As seniors, Tolin, Butler, and Bartz were also captains of the Trojan wrestling team that took a fourth place team title at the 2001 State Championships. Kelly Walsh head wrestling coach Tim Wilcox is accompanying the seniors on their final high school wrestling tournament of their career. The four Kelly Walsh athletes raised all of the funds for the trip through local business and individual contributions. The tournament is hosted by the National High School Coaches Association that will determine a national champion in each of the fourteen weight classes. The top eight finishers in each weight bracket will be named as a high school senior All-Americans. The top wrestlers from each state also compete for a national title and team trophies. In addition to the wrestling competition, the athletes will have a chance to meet with coaches from more than 150 college wrestling programs at the annual college recruiting seminar. Also wrestling at the Senior Nationals from Wyoming are Sterling Oglesby, 103, Gillette - Campbell County; Bryce Leonhardt, 112, Casper - Natrona County; Steve Harmon, 125, Green River; Tyson Shatto, 125, Douglas; Ryan Hoffman, 130, Newcastle; Dennis Taylor, 130, Gillette - Campbell County; Brian Tillery, 135, Sheridan; Jason Weede, Gillette-Campbell County; Shane Zawacki, 152, Powell; Trent Kirchhefer, 171, Douglas; Carson Kleinfeldt, 171, Powell; Daniel Peak, 189, Gillette - Campbell County.
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