Gardner Finishes All-American Season

HERSHEY, Pa. — Concordia senior Sebastian Gardner finished off his 2015 NCAA National Meet by placing sixth at 174. The sixth-place finish earns Gardner All-American honors.

Gardner becomes the 13th Cobber All-American in the past six years. He becomes the 25th overall NCAA All-American for the program.

Concordia CobbersGardner started his second day of the national meet by taking on No.1-seeded Conner Lefever of Wabash in the semifinals. Gardner gave up two takedowns in the first minute of the opening period and trailed 4-1 early in the match. He was losing 10-5 late in the match and was able to get Lefever on a takedown and almost had him on his back but at the last second Lefever was able turn over and get out of a potential pin fall situation.

Gardner ended up losing 10-5 in the semifinal match which sent him into the consolation semifinals.

Gardner then had to face the No.2 seed Josh Thomson of Messiah in the consolation semifinals. Gardner got any early takedown of Thomson and then was taken down by Thomson and the score was tied 3-3 after one period.

The consolation semifinal may have been decided in the final seconds of the second period. Gardner was on the bottom and came up with a huge reversal to take a 5-4 lead. Thomson was able to get the escape and then earned a huge takedown in the final seconds of the period to grab a 7-5 lead after the second period.

Gardner got a takedown midway through the third to tie the score at 7-7 but then allowed an escape to try for another 2-point takedown but couldn’t come up with the match winner and lost 8-7.

The one-point loss meant Gardner would wrestle in the 5th/6th place match in the medal round.

Gardner’s final match of his Cobber career was against Tory Cain of RIT. Cain had the first takedown of the match and stayed on top until the last seconds of the opening period. Gardner appeared to have gained a reversal as time expired in the period but after a video review it was deemed that he had only come up with an escape and he trailed 2-1 heading into the second period.

Both wrestlers earned escapes at the start of the second and third periods. Gardner trailed 3-2 with time ticking down in the final period of his college career. He then made one final shot at a takedown. Gardner got hold of Cain’s leg and turned him for an apparent takedown. Cain quickly slid out of bounds and the referees never gave the two points to Gardner.

Concordia head coach Matt Nagel then appealed the call and sent it to a video review. As with the first-period review, the final call went against Gardner and he was forced to try a desperation shot with less than 15-seconds remaining in the match. He tried for the takedown but got caught, gave up a takedown and wound up losing 5-2.

Gardner finishes the season with a 25-10 record. He was 52-24 in his final two seasons and earned 81 wins over his four-year career.

2015 NCAA Division III Championships Results

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