Team Preview: Carthage

Name of school: Carthage

Coach: Kenny Brown

Coach’s record: Overall & at school, include years: 149-43, this will be year 19 in Carthage

Last year’s record: 10-1

Team accomplishments last year: 1st @ Farmington Duals, 1st @ Harrisonville Holiday, 1st @ Monett, 1st @ Platte County Invitational, 5th @ COC, 1st @ JV COC, 2nd @ Districts, 15th @ State

Number of wrestlers on likely roster:  70

Number of returning starters: 8

Number of returning state qualifiers: 5

Number of returning state medalists: 0

Number of state qualifiers/starters graduated: 6


  • Nate Kelly—3-time medalist, 2-time State Finalist for Carthage
  • John Petticrew—3-time qualifier, 1 time medalist for Carthage
  • Clint Spencer—4-time medalist, 2-time State Finalist for Carthage, wrestled at D-II Newberry
  • Kellen Bounous—4-time Finalist, 3-time State Champ for Monett, wrestled at Mizzou

Projected lineup 

106: Kip Castor—10—(24-13), made the bubble match at Districts last year

113:  Carlos Reyes—12—(32-12), SQ @ 113, went 1-2 at State

          Bradyn Tate—9—Has a lot of youth experience

120:  Carlos Reyes

          Christian Brown—11—14-4 on JV last year

126:  Not sure

132:  Dagan Sappington—12—(26-12)—3-time state qualifier, made the bubble match at state last year

138: Brayden Benefiel—12—(9-4) on JV last year

         Lucas Jones—10—(3-0) on varsity and 9-3 on JV last year

145:  Davion King—10—(30-14), SQ @ 138, went 1-2 at State

          Braxdon Tate—11—(12-6) on varsity, 7-0 on JV, SQ in 2019 @ 106

152:  D.J. Witt—12—(15-3) on JV

          Eli Sneed—11—(10-14) on Varsity, (2-0) on JV

          Gabe Lambeth—10—(1-0) on Varsity, (12-1) on JV

160:  Creed Lambeth—12—(2-1) on Varsity, (9-1) on JV

          Brett Rockers—11—(8-6) on Varsity, (10-1) on JV

          Grey Petticrew—10—(14-1) on JV

170:  Lucas Lund—10—(10-7) on JV

182:  Luke Gall—10—(21-3) on varsity before he broke his arm and missed the rest of the season

195:  Obed Gonzalez—12—(14-12) on varsity, (7-1) on JV, made the bubble match at Districts last year

220:  Kanen Vogt—11—(26-18) on varsity, SQ @ 195

285:  Alexis Vasquez—12—(11-11) on varsity, (12-2) on JV

         Malachi Housh—9



Carlos Reyes—In only his 4th year of wrestling, Carlos is looking to make it to the podium at the State tournament.  He has turned into a leader for us on the mat.  If he is able to make it back down to 113, he has a very good opportunity to make it to the 3rd day of wrestling at State

Dagan Sappington—Dagan has put in a lot of mat time since March.  He came up just short at the state tournament last season.  He and Carlos has worked a lot this offseason together.  He has always been a successful wrestler for us, we just need to him to step up this year and start putting up more bonus points.

Braxdon Tate—last season was a difficult one for Braxdon coming off a state qualifier season as a freshman.  He was stuck behind Selvin Estrada(126) who went 1-2 at State last year and Sappington(132).  It is going to be interesting to see who comes out on top in the fight for 145 with Davion King.  I expect the loser of this to either drop to 138 or bump up to 152 to push for the starting spot

Davion King—Davion has the ability to catch just about anyone.  He lifted all summer and got bigger and stronger which is paying dividends on the football field.  We’re hoping to see those same benefits on the mat this year

Luke Gall—Luke had an amazing season going last year when he broke his arm in the dual with Neosho.  He lifted all summer and has put up some amazing numbers in the weight room and on the football field.  He wasn’t a state qualifier last year, but I have no doubt in my mind that he would have ended up on the podium if he hadn’t been injured.  He beat multiple state placers last year as a freshman competing against primarily juniors and seniors.

Kanen Vogt—Kanen’s going to bump to 220 this year, with big shoes to fill, but having a big guy with the ability to actually wrestle is going to allow him to have a lot of success this season

Who are your “sleepers” 

Kip Castor—Kip made the bubble at Districts last year, losing to a kid that he had previously beat.  Last year he was an undersized 106 who struggled to even get to 100lbs.  This year he is bigger and will actually have to cut down to 106, so I look for him to win those matches that he lost last year just because of his size.

152 and 160—We have 6 solid kids at these two weights.  I’m expecting a lot from whichever of these boys are able to win the spot

What are you taking from last year’s success to this season?

We honestly had to deal with a lot of adversity last year and went on to have a very successful season.  Not getting our football players until 5 weeks into the season, losing Gall to the broken arm, Brener Ocana dislocating his elbow, and Kale Schrader’s stomach issue forced a lot of the members of this current team to have to step up and produce for the team.  The kids did just that and demonstrated the importance of everyone on the team, not just the starters.


Did your team do anything special in the offseason

We were supposed to be hosting a satellite camp for Mizzou but were forced to cancel it due to Covid.

Anything new this year such as a new weight room, new wrestling room? 

Nothing new this year, but our numbers are still through the roof.  I’ve got 80 kids signed up right now and I will cut it down to 70.  I credit our junior high coaches for a lot of our numbers.  They’ve got 93 signed up for this year.

What are your goals this season?

Our goals this season are the same as every season.  We want to continue to improve throughout the course of the season to give us the best opportunity to challenge for a District championship and set ourselves up for a run during the State tournament.

What’s the toughest part of your schedule and why?

January.  We have three tough tournaments.  Excelsior Springs, Platte County, and the COC


Of your projected roster, is that more wrestlers in the room overall than recent years?

It will be the same.  We cut down to 70 last year.  Over the course of the year another 10 will quit which gets us to 60.  You can guarantee that of those 60, about 10 will be injured or sick, which gets us to 50 actually wrestling every day.  Our room has 25 10’ circles, so that number is just about right.

What kind of season do you think you will have this year?

I think that we will be very successful.  We are going to just have a very solid lineup with few holes.  I believe our team will have our better showings in duals and dual tournaments due to that solid lineup.  We might struggle at the larger tournaments because we won’t have the finalists, but we will sneak up on other teams through our work on the backside of the tournament.