Ezzell claimed third in the 195-pound weight class in Class 2, District 4 after beating fellow state qualifier Tage McNutt of Benton. He pinned St. Pius X's Harrison Bolstad before a loss to Kansas City Center's John Heague sent him to the wrestle backs. A decision over Hogan Prep's Ryan Franks set up the bronze match with McNutt and punched his first ticket to state.
He comes from a family full of wrestlers, his uncle Chris being a former state champion with Lafayette. His first match will come against Pleasant Hill's Cole Reeves with the winner facing, in all likelihood, defending champion McKenna Cook of Kirksville.
The Missouri State Championships begin Thursday at Mizzou Arena in Columbia.