The Perfect Season

Senior Ryan Yarnell capped off his final season with a state title on Saturday at Mizzou Arena.

Staff Report


Senior Ryan Yarnell was due for some good luck at the state tournament.

As a sophomore, Yarnell just missed out on a state medal after losing two matches by a total of three points.

As a junior, Yarnell battled the flu at the state meet. He still almost knocked off an undefeated Hunter Vanlue from Webb City in the semifinals. Yarnell lost a tough match 6-3 to Vanlue, but Yarnell was still able to take home a third place medal.

As a senior, Yarnell wanted to make sure his season ended the right way.

“I ate right, I slept, I stayed hydrated and cut my weight right. I made the possibility of something going wrong as low as I could,” Yarnell said.

After beating Sam East of Harrisonville 5-3 in the state title match on Saturday night at Mizzou Arena, Yarnell was finally a state champion.  

Yarnell said, “It was a weekend I will never forget. I can’t quite describe it in words.”

Ryan Yarnell is the first Windsor wrestler to complete an entire season undefeated.  

Head coach Kevin Stoffey said, “Ryan capped off an undefeated senior season with a very business like win in the state title match. Ryan was on a mission and was not going to be denied.  After getting the first takedown, the match was all but over with Ryan in control.”

Following his title match, Yarnell quickly made his way to the Windsor fan section, where he was embraced by his friends, teammates and family. Yarnell, who competes all over the country in the offseason, was appreciative of all of the support that he had throughout his career.

Yarnell said, “To my family it means the world. My family is my support system, they do it all for me. They drive me across the country to the biggest tournaments. Pay for my offseason training. They are always there for me when I need anything.”

Last season, Yarnell’s good friend, senior Jacob Warren, showed him the way. Warren won Windsor’s first state title with an emphatic pin in the state title match last season. At this year’s championships, Warren lost a tough semifinal match and went on to take fourth place. Warren also took fourth as a sophomore.

Stoffey said, “Jacob had a tough weekend, losing to the eventual state champion in the semifinals. I know that Jacob was disappointed, but being a three time state medalist, one of which was a state title, is one heck of an accomplishment.”

Warren and Yarnell were not the only wrestlers to bring home a state medal.

After Grant Pauli lost his opening round match in overtime, the sophomore battled back with four consecutive wins. Pauli then lost his final match, which was good enough for a fourth place finish.

Stoffey said, “Grant took a huge step forward this weekend.  Last year as a freshman qualifier, he won one match and this year he steps it up and places fourth.  The sky is the limit for Grant.”

Senior Connor Richey, who qualified for state for the first time, nearly took home a medal as well. Richey lost 3-2 in the “bubble match.”

Stoffey said, “Connor was excited to be a first time qualifier and came within one point of a medal.”

Freshman Chris Butts also won a match at the state meet. His two losses were by decision.

Stoffey said, “Chris qualified in the tough 160 pound weight class as a freshman and had a very competitive showing.”

Senior Drew Kinder lost two difficult matchups at the state meet.

Stoffey said, “What Drew has accomplished in three years is remarkable.  He has worked extremely hard in the offseason and has been a leader in the wrestling room.”

As a team, Windsor finished in eighth place in Class 3 with 56 total points. The eighth place finish is the highest finish in the history of the wrestling program. Last year, the Owls finished in tenth place.

Yarnell said, “The eighth place finish is a real testament to the work we have all put in and the season we have put together. Even when things didn’t go our way in a few key places, we still showed that we were the best team the school has ever had.”

Windsor, which had never had a state champion until last season, now has champions in back to back seasons.

Stoffey said, “Ryan and Jacob have set the standard for ALL future Windsor wrestlers aspiring to succeed.”