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Hy-Vee/Pepsi Athlete of the Week: LSN's Charlie Dykes overcomes history, birth defect to win state

Charlie Dykes Lee's Summit North wrestling
Posted at 3:27 PM, Mar 11, 2024

LEE'S SUMMIT, Mo. — A high school wrestling match lasts six minutes.

It seems to last a lot longer than that when you win it 1-0.

But that's what Lee's Summit North's Charlie Dykes did earlier this month in the state championship match in Columbia, Missouri.

"Those last 10 seconds, he was coming after me," Dykes said about his opponent. "It was pretty close, so I bet I gave my coach a heart attack."

Dykes, this week's Hy'Vee and Pepsi Athlete of the Week, capped off an undefeated, 41-0 season by beating Liberty's Devon Harrison in the Class 4, 126 pounds championship match.

And Dykes was exactly right about his coach.

"Those last 10 seconds were like holding your breath going, 'Oh my gosh, hold on,'" Lee's Summit North wrestling coach Mick Cronk said.

If that seemed long, it doesn't come close to the wait Lee's Summit North had to endure to finally have an individual state champion.

That's right, Dykes was the school's first-ever winner.

"I don't know how," Dykes said of the accomplishment. "We've definitely had some guys that came close, but no one has ever got the job done, so we did it."

And Dykes, a senior, got the job done despite a birth defect that left Dykes missing bones in his left foot. He basically wrestles on one foot.

"It's been my life since birth, so I usually don't think about it," Dykes said. "I mean, you get some stares and stuff, but I try not to let that affect me and I kind of just go out there and do my own thing."