Preps Notebook: Free State senior Matthew Marcum leads Firebirds to team wrestling title at Johnson County Classic

Matthew Marcum during the 2021-22 Free State wrestling season.

The Free State boys wrestling team placed first among 25 schools at the Johnson County Classic at Blue Valley High School last Saturday. FSHS senior Matthew Marcum (285 pounds) led the way with seven consecutive wins and was named most outstanding wrestler.

In all, four Firebirds brought home first-place medals — Marcum, Drew Streeter (106), Nolan Bradley (113) and Grayson Hagen (126) — and Bradley had his 100th career victory. D’onte Goodman (third at 132), Eric Streeter (second at 138), Gabe Swoyer (fourth at 157), Blaine Larkin (third at 190) and Gavin Lanchard (fifth at 190) also contributed to the team title.

Then, on Tuesday afternoon, Free State took down Junction City on the road, defeating the Blue Jays 39-28.

After losing the opening two matches, the Firebirds won 18 consecutive points, and senior captain Eric Streeter (138) defeated Junction City’s Kayden Blake, 8-5, to give Free State an 11-point advantage through seven matches. Additional wins by Swoyer, Larkin and Marcum sealed the team victory for Free State in the final round. Up next, the Firebirds will travel to Derby on Jan. 7.

After season’s first loss, LHS girls bounce back

After taking its first loss of the season in a close game against Blue Valley West on Monday, Lawrence High’s girls basketball team bounced back on Tuesday by defeating Excelsior Springs 62-26 at HyVee Arena.

Senior Serenity Keo led LHS in scoring with 18 points, including a game-high four 3-pointers. Junior Brynnae Johnson made three 3s and scored 17 total points, and junior Alayna Littlejohn added eight points.

LHS coach Jeff Dickson was proud of how his group responded to Monday’s loss.

“Great bounce-back game versus a very scrappy Excelsior Springs team,” Dickson said. “Serenity Keo was on fire and Brynnae Johnson was amazing managing the game and getting her teammates involved. Great senior leadership from Amaya Marshall, Lucy Hardy, Daphne Bracker-Sturm and Serenity Keo. When we play with energy and positive emotion, we can be a special group.”

Up next, the Lions (4-1) will host Shawnee Mission Northwest on Jan. 6.

Mill Valley routs FSHS girls basketball

The Free State girls basketball team fell to Mill Valley 69-23 at home on Tuesday.

Senior Symira Spencer and sophomore Hadley Lonnberg led the Firebirds (0-4) with five points each. Junior Cydnee Price and freshman Addie Fulscher each had four points.

Spencer, Price, Fulscher and sophomore Chole Clossen each made a 3-pointer.

Free State will return to action on Jan. 10 at Olathe North.

LHS boys wrestling falls to Effingham, Silver Lake

The Lawrence High boys wrestling team came up short in matches with Atchison County (63-6) and Silver Lake (51-24) last Thursday.

LHS won just one match in the opening round against Atchison, when Mike Cantu De La Cruz opened the meet with a pin. Against Silver Lake, the Lions had four winners — Remy Frentrop (132), Trevon Swearinger (138), Kenneth Marcial (144) and Lijah Mann (157).


Welcome to the new Our old commenting system has been replaced with Facebook Comments. There is no longer a separate username and password login step. If you are already signed into Facebook within your browser, you will be able to comment. If you do not have a Facebook account and do not wish to create one, you will not be able to comment on stories.