LHS senior Trey Medina remains undefeated entering substate wrestling

photo by: Photo courtesy of Avena Photography

Lawrence High senior Trey Medina stands atop the podium after winning the 145-pound weight class at the 6A regional meet at Olathe East. Medina was named the regional's wrestler of the year after the event as well. Photo courtesy of Avena Photography.

Lawrence High senior Trey Medina wasn’t expecting to receive the highest honor at the Class 6A regional meet at Olathe East last weekend.

Shortly after the event, in which Medina secured a first-place finish in the 145-pound weight class, LHS head coach Patrick Naughton told him the good news. Out of the 14 regional champions at the meet, Medina was tabbed the wrestler of the year for his region.

“That honestly meant the world to me,” Medina said. “I didn’t even really know or suspect anything, honestly. It kind of took a second for it to even hit.”

But the reason why it meant so much to Medina is because what the award represented.

For Medina, it was a symbol of all the hard work he put in to making his final season count. Medina is now 15-0 on the year and, as the No. 2 ranked wrestler in the 145-pound weight class in Class 6A, has a real shot at a state title.

“That’s something a lot of guys I knew got growing up,” Medina said of the award. “That meant a lot to somebody that you had to really work for that.”

“We’ve been working our butts off and it means a lot when somebody actually sees it,” Medina added.

Medina has actually been putting in the work since the moment his 2019-20 campaign ended last winter.

After winning a Sunflower League title as a junior, Medina was disappointed by his finish at the Class 6A state tournament. He didn’t place after going 2-2, ending the season with a 30-11 overall record.

It forced Medina to reevaluate how seriously he took wrestling.

“It was not a good year of wrestling for me,” Medina said. “The great ones didn’t take time off; they were not sitting on the couch just relaxing. They were out there working, and it took me a long time to see that.”

“If you want to be good, it’s not gonna be handed to you,” Medina added. “You got to really work for it.”

That’s exactly what Medina did. He started working out twice a day and added cardio to his routine as well. Medina said he still runs two different 30-minute sessions on a daily basis, often focusing on his speed.

It allows Medina to have more stamina to last longer in matches.

“I’m a guy to leave some in the gas tank in case something goes sideways,” Medina said.

It also helps that Medina is now wrestling in the 145-pound weight class after competing in the 152-pound weight class as a junior. He acknowledged that he was the smallest wrestler in his division last winter, and it made a big difference in terms of trying to overpower opponents.

“I think I definitely fit into my weight class (this year),” Medina said. “That’s where it really helped me honestly is me getting some strength and some meat on these little bones and being able to go all three periods.”

It all makes Medina more confident on the wrestling mat this year. He now looks forward to facing tough opponents.

Medina will square off with Shawnee Mission South senior Ruiz Sullivan in the opening round of substate, which will take place Saturday at Olathe North. With a win, Medina could end up facing Olathe North sophomore Alex Samuelson (No. 3 in Class 6A) in the semifinals of the 145-pound bracket.

No other ranked wrestler is in the 145-pound weight class at the Olathe North substate meet.

“I go into every weekend thinking that the kid I’m about to wrestle has a mindset that he’s about to beat me,” Medina said. “I need to have that hanging on my shoulders. That’s real motivation for me.”

Lawrence High’s boys wrestling team will have six total wrestlers competing in the substate meet at Olathe North, which is slated to begin at 12 p.m. Saturday. All wrestlers need to place inside the top-four of their respective weight class to qualify for the state meet.

• Coming Thursday: Free State wrestling substate preview, with feature on freshman Laython Biddle.

Here’s a quick look at each remaining LHS wrestler:

106-pound weight class: Andrew Honas, freshman (12-10)

Honas will face Blue Valley Northwest sophomore Thomas Peterson (30-9) in the opening round of the 106-pound bracket. Olathe North sophomore Casin Lawrence (15-1, No. 4 in Class 6A) is the only ranked wrestler in this bracket.

113-pound weight class: Jack Elsten, sophomore (16-3)

Elsten, who is ranked No. 3 in Class 6A, will open with a matchup against Blue Valley North senior David Franke (18-17) in the first round. Olathe North sophomore Cael Alderman (18-2, No. 2 in 6A) is the only other ranked wrestler in this division, and he’s on the other side of the bracket.

120-pound weight class: Kevin Honas, junior (17-3)

As the top seed in his bracket, Honas (No. 3 in 6A) will start off by taking on sophomore Jacob Mendoza (24-9) of Shawnee Mission West. Honas could then face Gardner Edgerton sophomore Josh Andrew (20-5, No. 4 in 6A) in the semifinals.

Olathe North freshman Jacob Vasquez (13-5, No. 6 in Class 6A) is slotted in the other side of the 120-pound bracket.

132-pound weight class: Logan Farrell, senior (11-4)

Farrell will face Blue Valley senior TJ Blancarte (13-13) in the opening round. Olathe North freshman Trevor Vasquez (15-5, No. 5 in 6A) in the top-half of the bracket with Farrell. Gardner Edgerton’s Collin Smith (19-4, No. 6 in 6A) is on the bottom half of the 132-pound bracket.

182-pound weight class: Tucker Corbin, sophomore (8-9)

Corbin’s first-round opponent will be junior Gavin Biancalana (21-9) of Blue Valley Northwest. Olathe South senior Zack Leskovac (28-1, No. 3 in 6A) will get a bye in the top portion of the bracket, while Olathe East senior Malique Washington (17-6, No. 6 in 6A) is in the bottom section of the bracket with Corbin.

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