The motto in the Blue Valley Northwest wrestling room this week was, “Leave no man behind,”
And the Huskies accomplished the feat Saturday at the Class 6A Blue Valley Regional, qualifying all 14 wrestlers for the state tournament next weekend in Wichita.
“I’ve been a head coach for 28 years, and this is the first time I’ve been able to qualify all 14 to state,” Huskies coach Tim Serbousek said.
The Huskies had the regional title in hand after semifinals by qualifying 10 wrestlers for the championship bouts.
BV Northwest scored 224 points in winning, with BV North second at 137 and Blue Valley third at 121 in the eight-team regional field.
The Huskies won the Eastern Kansas League last week.
“This is the first time since 1999 we won league and regional,” said Serbousek, who has been the only mat coach for the Huskies in its 21 years.
Husky senior Jaquwan Stone was voted as the top regional wrestler by the coaches.
He improved to 37-3 in beating Blue Valley sophomore Tanner Madl 5-2 in the 145-pound title bout.
Stone is a three-time state qualifier and placed fourth last season at state.
“Our key was working hard in practice every day,” Stone said.
BV Northwest senior Samarth Thakur improved to 32-13 at 106. He had a 5-1 lead over SM South freshman Isaias Olson when Olson couldn’t continue because of an injury.
“When he (Thakur) was a freshman he didn’t win a match,” Serbousek said. “He was pinned in every match except the las,t and the team carried him off the mat.”
Thakur said: “I was 78 pounds as a freshman. I stuck with it because I liked wrestling.”
Blue Valley senior Jackson Macoubrie was a soccer player as a freshman, and this year was a 6A all-state defender in the sport.
In his freshman year at Blue Valle,y he found wrestling almost by accident. He was on his way to an open gym before the basketball season.
“A close friend of mine grabbed me and led me to the wrestling room where they were having an open mat,” he said. “I went along thinking, ‘I’ll just go in as a joke and pretend to be a wrestler.’ ”
And rest, as they say, is history.
He was a .500 wrestler last season but qualified for state. This year, he took a 33-3 record into the regional title bout against BV Northwest junior Chris Lyons.
He got a takedown at the buzzer in the second period and won 3-1.
“Soccer is more of a team thing,” he said. “In wrestling, it is one on one. If you lose, it’s your fault.”
SM South senior Rasheed Brady beat BV Northwest junior Foster Jacobs 10-6 in the 195-pound title bout. He will take a 33-2 record to state.