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Olympian Douglas, All-American Gardner top men's wrestling poll

By RICK PETERSON

TopSports.news

EDITOR'S NOTE: Over the coming weeks, TopSports.news will recognize hundreds of Shawnee County's all-time greats in 25 sports/categories as part of our Best of the Best project. Readers will have the opportunity to vote through July, with the Top 25 in all categories announced in August. To cast a vote for the Best of the Best, click on: https://linkto.run/p/6KQ59I2TEmail votes/nominations will also be accepted at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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Most any conversation about the rich history of men's wrestling in Shawnee County starts with former Highland Park great Melvin Douglas, a three-time state high school champ for the Scots, a two-time NCAA champion for Oklahoma, a former world champ and a two-time Olympian.

But Douglas is just one of many local grapplers who carved out their own outstanding legacy in the sport.

Melvin DouglasMelvin Douglas [Facebook]

Tanner GardnerTanner Gardner [Stanford Athletics]

Tagen Lambotte2Tagen Lambotte [USD321.com]

There's former Shawnee Heights two-time state champ Tanner Gardner, who went on to become a three-time All-American at Stanford, while Tagen Lambotte was a four-time state champ for Rossville before wrestling for Iowa.

And then there's 2021 Washburn Rural graduate Bishop Murray, who won three Class 6A state individual championships and led the Junior Blues to their first-ever team championship earlier this year, while former Rossville star and current Rural assistant coach Duane Zlatnik was a three-time prep champ for the Bulldawgs.

There's also a long list of former local stars who were multi-time state high school champions.

There are 25 candidates listed to pick from at https://linkto.run/p/6KQ59I2T while readers are encouraged to write in the names of their favorites.

Vote as many times as you wish, with the only requirement that eligible candidates must have grown up in Shawnee County or attended one of the county's 10 high schools.

Final selections will be based on reader vote as well as input from TSN contributors and current and past local sports media professionals.   

Votes will be accepted through July 31 before TSN publishes our Best of the Best lists in August.

NEXT UP: Women's wrestling.

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