By RICK PETERSON
PARK CITY -- Shawnee Heights 285-pound wrestling standout Rykan Carver was one win away from earning a Class 5A state medal in the 2023 state tournament and immediately set his sights higher for his senior campaign.
"I lost in the blood round last year,' Carver said. "It's my last year so there's no way I wanted to go home without medaling.''
Now, entering the final day of his competitive athletic career, Carver has not only reached his goal of becoming a state medalist but will have a shot on Saturday to claim high school wrestling's biggest prize -- a state championship.
Carver, who will study engineering at Kansas State next year, said his regional championship last Saturday gave him confidence that he could challenge for a title this weekend.
"I won the regional tournament and I wasn't necessarily expecting that,'' Carver said. "That gave me some more confidence that I could do it.''
By RICK PETERSON
Washburn men's basketball coach Brett Ballard never spoke four truer words.
"Better late than never,'' Ballard said.
After trailing for virtually the entire night, the Ichabods pulled out a 66-64 home MIAA win over Lincoln on sophomore Brady Christiansen's game-winning 3-pointer from the top of the key.
"We ran that play like the last three plays of the game and it was just kind of read what the big guy did,'' Christiansen said. "He went with Bach (Jack Bachelor) on the drive and I popped out and tried to step up and make it and as soon as I released it, I knew it was going in. I really did.''
By RICK PETERSON
Washburn University's women had plenty to play for in Thursday's home MIAA basketball contest against Lincoln in Lee Arena.
First of all, Lora Westling's Ichabods were trying to put a seven-game losing streak in the rearview mirror.
But WU was also trying to wipe away the bad taste left by a 13-point road loss on Jan. 13 to the Blue Tigers, who have posted just two MIAA wins on the season.
The Ichabods achieved both those objectives in a 71-62 Pink Out Night win while surpassing their win total from the entire 2022-2023 season.
"We had a lot to play for tonight, just getting our confidence back, getting a win, and avenging a loss, especially with an event like tonight,'' Westling said. "We have so many incredible women in the stands to play for and that show real courage and fight (against breast cancer).
"We told our players, 'You get to go out tonight and play. A lot of people are having a lot more to battle so enjoy yourself and I thought we did for most of the game.''
Washburn, which improved to 12-13 overall and 7-12 in the conference, got 19 points from senior point guard Aubree Dewey while sophomore YIbari Nwidadah added 15 points and grabbed nine rebounds before fouling out with 2:50 remaining.
By Rick Peterson
The Kansas State High School Activities Association added a Class 4A-1A division for high school bowling this season and Hayden took full advantage of that change Wednesday at Gage Bowl, sweeping the team championships in the regional tournament while also garnering the boys individual title.
The Wildcats won the girls and boys team championships to earn berths in next Wednesday's state tournament at Bowlero-Wichita while Hayden junior Chase Blaser shot a 603 three-game series to claim top individual honors in the boys division.
Hayden's boys put four bowlers in the top 11 places individually as the Wildcats won the team title by a 2,974-2,885 margin over Ottawa, with both of those teams earning team berths for state.
By Rick Peterson
Junior Amelia Ramsey registered a double-double with 22 points and 12 rebounds in Tuesday's 61-48 Centennial League road win at Manhattan.
Hayden, No. 2-ranked in Class 3A, improved to 16-3 overll and wrapped up Centennial League play with a 7-3 record.
Wildcat junior Brylee Meier added 10 points in Tuesday's win while senior Avery Grunert scored eights points and senior Lauren Sandstrom, junior Norma Greco and sophomore Bella Reid all finished with seven points.
Hayden will close out its regular season on Thursday at Eudora.
Bulldawgs avenge loss with 57-50 Mid-East League win over Rock Creek
Rossville's boys closed out their regular season with a tight 57-50 Mid-East League win over Rock Creek, completing their regular season with a 14-6 overall record and an 8-2 mark in the league.
Tuesday's Rossville win avenged a 51-47 loss to Rock Creek earlier in the season.
Rossville jumped out to a 16-5 first-quarter advantage but Rock Creek answered with a 22-12 second quarter to pull within a point at the half (28-27).
Rossville led 43-38 at the start of the fourth quarter and outscored the Mustangs 14-12 over the final eight minutes to hold on for the win.
Junior Kameron Badura led the Bulldawgs with 14 points, followed by Mason Jones with 12 points, Tayson Horak with 11 and Cameron Miller with nine points.
Rossville girls cap 17-3 regular season
Rossville's girls finished off a 17-3 regular season with a 69-25 Mid-East League rout over Rock Creek Tuesday night.