Wrestling: Wrestlers send six to nationals

 

March 5, 2014

By Christopher Clapper

In a season filled with record-breaking performances, the UW-Whitewater Warhawks did it again at the 2014 Midwest Super Regional hosted by Wabash College.

Finishing the tournament with 130 points, eight ahead of second-place UW-La Crosse, the Warhawks had three champions, two runner-ups, and a third-place finisher, sending six wrestlers to the NCAA National Championships on March 14.

Last season the Warhawks sent a record seven wrestlers to the national tournament with all four regional champions returning this year.

In the 149-pound weight class, Elroy Perkin took third this year after a 16-0 technical fall in the third-place match.

165-pounder Cedric Gibson finished in first place for the second straight year after winning all three of his matches.

In the championship bout, Gibson defeated Wabash College’s Josh Sampson by a 14-3 major decision.

Senior Shane Siefert continued his impressive season, winning the 197-pound weight class by defeating three of his four opponents via pin.

Siefert,-Shane
Shane Siefert

He goes into the national tournament with a 37-4 record and a team-leading 10 pins. Ranked No. 2 in Division-III, Siefert said he is mentally and physically prepared for the national tournament this year.

“I feel pretty good right now,” Siefert said. “We’ve got a few things to work on, and I just have to pretty much wrestle my style of wrestling and not wrestle down to my opponent.”

Rounding out the returning champions for the Warhawks was senior 285-pounder Anthony Edgren. Entering the tournament as the No. 1 seed, Edgren was defeated in the championship bout by No. 2-seeded UW-La Crosse wrestler Jake Minske, 5-2. The second-place finish still qualified Edgren for his second consecutive national tournament appearance.

First-time national qualifiers for the Warhawks included 133-pounder Jimmy Nehls, who won the championship by winning three straight matches after a first-round bye. Nehls is currently ranked No. 7 in D-III.

headshot_2_Fader,-Tim
Tim Fader

“Jimmy had a great tournament,”  head coach Tim Fader said. “His bracket had a returning All-American in it that he beat in the semifinals, and he had a good solid win in the finals, so I just think that Jimmy is wrestling really well right now.”

Matt Adcock is the other first-time national qualifier for the Warhawks, after capturing second place in the tournament, losing to top-seeded Justin Holm of Olivet in the championship match.

“Adcock is exactly what a lot of people think about around the country when they think of a Whitewater wrestler,” Fader said. “Just really physical and when he goes he’s really fun to watch, and I think he is really coming into his own.”

With the win, the Warhawks won the Midwest Super Regional for the second year in a row, further raising the expectations for the program.

“I think each of the individuals who advanced to the national tournament wants to become a national champion and score points for the team so that they can be a team national champion as well,” Fader said.

The qualifiers will head to Cedar Rapids, Iowa, on March 14 and 15 to compete for the national championship.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email