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Shawnee County women's wrestlers making mark in new sport

Rick Peterson

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/7NGNFB5LEmail 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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Women's wrestling is relatively new in Kansas at the high school and college level, but Shawnee County wrestlers have already made their mark in the sport.

Washburn Rural has won the state team championship both seasons since the Kansas State High School Activities Association made women's wrestling an official sport while Shawnee County competitors have already captured four individual titles.

Recent Rural grad Dajia Anderson won state titles in both her state appearances while her teammate, Rebekah Smith, added her first state crown as a senior after placing third as a junior.

Dajia AndersonnewDajia Anderson

Rebekah SmithnewRebekah Smith

KendraHurlaKendra Hurla

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

Rick Peterson

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.

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