Doles wins kids state wrestling championship
Louisburg Middle School seventh-grader Brandon Doles won a state title at the Kansas State Folkstyle Wrestling Championships on March 26 in Topeka. Doles won his crown in the 12-and-under 120 pound class and capped what was a special season.
Brandon Doles had been waiting for this moment for a long time.
Doles, a seventh-grader at Louisburg Middle School, began wrestling nine years ago and a state championship has always been on his mind. It was always elusive.
Despite falling short several times, Doles kept working and all that hard work and patience paid off. At the Kansas State Folkstyle Championships, Doles captured that state title in the 12-and-under 120 pound class on March 26 at the Kansas Expocentre in Topeka.
“I felt very confident at state this year,” Doles said. “Going into state I only lost two matches at 120 pounds in Kansas. I was able to beat the second and third place finishers to win the championship.
“When I won state I had so much adrenaline. I was so excited and pumped that I had finally met my goal. It was a feeling that I will never forget.”
Going into the state tournament, Doles had already had a special season. He started the year placing at two national tournaments. Doles was fourth at the Tulsa Kickoff and sixth at the Junior Olympic Championship in Oklahoma City.
Doles then finished first at the Kansas Tournament of Champions in Salina leading up to the state tournament.
“Once I won that, it gave it me a ton of confidence,” Doles said. “I knew wrestling a lot of tough tournaments was going to give me an advantage this year. Winning state this year was definitely a goal I accomplished. I started wrestling nine years ago as the youngest wrestler in the club and now this year I was the oldest for our club.”
Before the kids season started, Doles took first in the Sunflower State Games last summer for the fourth consecutive year and also won a Frontier League title in middle school this past season.
With all his accomplishments, Doles was awarded the Most Outstanding Wrestler award from the Louisburg club and finished the season with 22 pins.
At the state tournament, Doles opened with a pin and then defeated Plainville’s Kyle Werner by a 3-2 decision in the quarterfinals. In his semifinal match, Doles downed the Bobcat’s Ethan Cunning by a 6-3 decision that set up an intense championship match.
Doles faced off with Iola’s Trenton Jones in the finals and earned a 2-1 decision to finish a dream season.
“I’ve been wrestling for nine years and have made it to state every year,” Doles said. “I’ve finished fifth twice and fourth once. I’ve been close to making it to the finals twice – losing in overtime one year and by one point another. I’ve worked extremely hard the past few years and I worked hard over the summer with the high school. It all paid off.”
Doles was one of four wrestlers from the Louisburg Kids Wrestling Club to earn state medals. Xander Lucas finished third in the 10-and-under 190 pound class. Ashton Moore took sixth in the 10-and-under 95 pound division, while Kaden Allen was sixth at 10-and-under and 64 pounds.
Tyson Blancarte, Jay McCaskill, Brayden Yoder and Harrison Kalinka also competed for Louisburg, but finished just short of a medal.
Another pair of Louisburg Middle School students also fared well at the state tournament. Eighth-grader Cade Holtzen finished third in the 14-and-under, 100-pound class for the Olathe Southside team, while Ryan Owens also qualified for the state tournament.