Another year, another step forward
Goade medals at state for second straight year
Deep in the hallway underneath the stands of Mizzou Arena, with his hands on his knees, sweat dripping from his body, Cassville senior Wyatt Goade managed enough strength to smile when his coach Nathan Fortner said how proud he was.
For the second consecutive year, Goade raised the bar and standard for Cassville wrestling with a state medal, this year, the senior ended his career with a fifth-place finish to beat his sixth place final last year.
“I end with a win,” Goade said. “I came into this tournament and wanted to get on the stand. I would have liked to get higher, but to finish strong and go out a winner is a nice accomplishment.”
Goade began the tournament with a third-period pin of Alex Barker of Benton in 5:34.
However, Evan Shetley of Sullivan tripped up Goade, 5-4, in the quarterfinal round.
Having a short memory, Goade bounced back with a 2-1 win over Nolan Miller of Pleasant Hill and then won a tie-breaker in overtime, 5-3, over Hunter Hansken of Odessa.
Clayton Johnson of Reeds Spring got Goade up in the consolation semifinal, 5-3, but the Wildcat bounced back to take fifth in a 3-1 win.
In the consolation semifinal, Goade fell to Reeds Spring’s Clayton Johnson, 5-3, but rebounded again with the 3-1 win in the fifth place match.
“I knew I wanted it,” Goade said. “Sixth didn’t feel too good last year, but I went out on top. I’m glad I came out and wrestled. I wouldn’t have been here if not for that. I can tell you this. Next year, you better be prepared for a lot more interviews up here because Cassville is bringing a bunch of guys.”
Keaton Artherton had a tough draw. He opened by getting pinned by Dillon Nichols, of Mexico, in 3:22. Nichols would go on to take first in state.
He bounced back to defeat Blayde Briner, of Savannah, by pin in 3:31.
He then fell 6-2 to Jacob Mirly, of Lutheran South, to be eliminated.
“I’m proud of both these guys and our whole program,” Fortner said. “Keaton had some tough draws up here, and he battled.
“Our kids in the program are putting in the work. We have guys that are wanting to wrestle year-round, and that’s what it takes — kids that want to invest and grow and learn this sport.”
Fortner said the future looks bright for the Wildcats, and some of that credit goes to Goade.
“He is the standard that our kids look to,” Fortner said. “He established our baseline goal to get to state and get on the podium. Our kids have guts and are driven. The future for Cassville wrestling is bright.”