(COLUMBIA) The MSHSAA Girls and Boys State Wrestling Championships begin Thursday at Mizzou Arena in Columbia.

Five high schools in Jefferson County will be represented in the girls tournament and eight high schools in the boys tournament. Representing Northwest girls are Taylor Murphey, Emma Spencer and Macie Twine. Head coach Ron Wilhelm says that each one has their own unique style that makes them dangerous.

For the boys team at Northwest, junior district champion Chase Stegall is the best chance the Lions have for a state champion.

The Seckman girls team has Corrine McClure in the 121-pound weight class and Maddie Conrad in the 126 to represent the Jaguars at state. Head coach Ryan Moyer thinks the world of them both and believes they have the qualities to win a state title.

As for the Seckman boys, it’s obvious that two-time state champion Kai Orine is the front-runner to win another title. So coach Moyer checks in on last year’s 4th place finisher in the 170, Jeremy Ashlock, and how his field breaks down.

Moving on to the Hillsboro boys state wrestlers. Freshman Dalton Litszinger of the 120-pound weight class enters the tournament as the number one seed with a 43-2 record. Dalton didn’t give up a single point during districts and that, along with his state bracket, has head coach Matt Mitchell confident he can be a state champion.

Last but not least, we check in on DeSoto and one of its eight state qualifiers, 285-pounder Landon Porter. Head coach John Brown talks about the qualities that make Landon, who finished 2nd at state last season, championship material this season.

The MSHSAA Girls and Boys State Wrestling Championships begin Thursday at Mizzou Arena and will carry on through Saturday. Click girls and boys for a complete list of the state qualifiers.

Northwest HC Ron Wilhelm Full Interview

Seckman HC Ryan Moyer Full Interview

Hillsboro HC Matt Mitchell Full Interview

DeSoto HC John Brown Full Interview