Auggies claim 3 titlists at SCSU Husky Open

ST. CLOUD, Minn. — Augsburg College wrestler Chad Johnson (SR, Ferryville, Wis./DeSoto HS) earned Outstanding Wrestler honors with a strong performance to win the heavyweight class, one of three Auggies to win individual titles at the St. Cloud State University Holiday Inn/Husky Open, held on Saturday at Halenbeck Hall. No team results were kept at the open meet.

Augsburg AuggiesJohnson earned the tournament’s John Oxton Outstanding Wrestler Award with four wins, all over St. Cloud State wrestlers — an 8-1 win in the opening round, a 5:23 pin in the quarterfinals, a 10-7 win over former SCSU wrestler Shamus O’Grady, the 2013 NCAA Division II national champion at 184 pounds, in the semifinals and a 3-1 overtime win over Austin Goergen in the finals.

The two-time defending NCAA Division III national champion at heavyweight and current top-ranked wrestler in the weight class, Johnson is now 12-0 on the season and 117-13 with 40 pins in his Auggie career. He has now won 41 straight matches dating to last season, and is 85-2 since the beginning of his sophomore campaign.

Mike Fuenffinger (JR, Hibbing, Minn.), the No. 2-ranked wrestler nationally at 125 pounds, went 4-0 to earn his second tournament championship of the season, improving to 10-0 on the season and 53-17 in his career. Fuenffinger scored a 14-0, major-decision win in the semifinals and scored two wins over Division II wrestlers — a 9-2 win over Wisconsin-Parkside’s Ronzel Darling in the semifinals and a 4-2 win over Joel Salomon of St. Cloud State in the finals.

Matt Hechsel (JR, Apple Valley, Minn.), the No. 3-ranked wrestler nationally at 197, went 4-0 on the day to remain unbeaten on the season at 13-0 with his third tournament championship of the season. He opened with a 13-3, major-decision win and outscored his opponents by a 26-8 margin on the day, including a 3-1 win over Carl Lawrence of Missouri Valley, the No. 3-ranked 197-pounder in the NAIA national rankings, in the semifinals and a 3-0 win over Chris Brassel of St. Cloud State in the finals. Hechsel is now 67-29 in his career.

Justin Bowland (SR, Foley, Minn.) finished second at 165 pounds, He scored a 7-6 win over Alex Anaya of St. Cloud State in the semifinals, but dropped a 4-0 decision to Nick Fishback of Wisconsin-Parkside in the finals. Bowland is now 10-4 on the season.

Of the nine Auggies that competed at the St. Cloud State Open, eight earned top-four finishes. Marcus Hamer (FY, Kimball, Minn.) improved to 12-2 on the season with a third-place finish at 141 pounds. His 3-1 effort included a 19-2, technical-fall win in the first round. Will Keeter (JR, Twin Falls, Idaho), ranked No. 5 nationally at 157, also went 3-1 on the day to finish third in his weight class, improving to 11-3 on the season.

Rashad Kennedy (JR, Inver Grove Heights, Minn./Henry Sibley HS) went 3-2 on the day to finish in fourth place at 149 pounds, while Austin Boniface (FY, Wyoming, Minn./Forest Lake HS) placed fourth at 165 with a 2-2 day.

Augsburg’s White Team (junior varsity) competed at the Wartburg College Dick Walker Invitational in Waverly, Iowa, and came away with eight placewinners, finishing fifth in the nine-team meet with 74.0 points.

Chad Bartschenfeld (JR, Amery, Wis.) led the way for the Auggies with a second-place finish at 133 pounds, going 3-1 with two pins and a major decision. Tyrell Martin (JR, Eagan, Minn./Henry Sibley HS) placed third at 174 pounds, going 4-1 with two pins. Roarke Langer (SO, Ellsworth, Wis.) placed fourth at 133, going 4-2 with a pin, technical fall and major decision.

James Goman (FY, Lakeville, Minn./Trinity-River Ridge HS) placed fifth at 125, as did Quade Zupko (FY, Wyoming, Minn./Chisago Lakes HS) at 149 and Logan Hortop (FY, Faribault, Minn.) at heavyweight. Tucker Sarbacker (FY, Mineral Point, Wis./Iowa-Grant HS) placed sixth at 141, as did Grant Parker (FY, Onalaska, Wis.) at 157.

Augsburg is now idle for the holiday break. The Auggies will next compete at the Ken Kraft Midlands Championships at Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill., Dec. 29-30.

St. Cloud State Husky Open results

125 — Mike Fuenffinger 4-0, champion.
141 — Marcus Hamer 3-1, 3rd place.
149 — Rashad Kennedy 3-2, 4th place.
157 — Will Keeter 3-1, 3rd place.
165 — Justin Bowland 3-1, 2nd place; Austin Boniface 2-2, 4th place.
184 — Miles Hammerlund 2-2.
197 — Matt Hechsel 4-0, champion.
HWT — Chad Johnson 4-0, champion.

125 — James Goman 4-2, 5th place; Blong Kong 1-2.
133 — Chad Bartschenfeld 3-1, 2nd place; Roarke Langer 3-2, 4th place; Brandon Peters 1-2.
141 — Tucker Sarbacker 3-2, 6th place; Blake Miller 1-2; Ryan Cook 0-2; Cameron Henning 0-2.
149 — Quade Zupko 4-2, 5th place.
157 — Grant Parker 3-3, 6th place; Drew Randall 0-2.
174 — Tyrell Margin 4-1, 3rd place; Todd Fairbanks 0-2.
184 — Gregory Skon 2-2; Avery Sweeney 0-2.
197 — Justin Flores 2-2.
HWT — Logan Hortop 2-2, 5th place.