INDIANOLA, Iowa — Claiming two individual champions and 16 placewinners, the Augsburg University wrestling team won the 17-team Simpson College Luther L. Hill Invitational, held on Saturday.
Augsburg claimed the team title in the 15-school, 17-team invitational, which included four nationally-ranked teams. In addition to the Auggies, ranked No. 1 in the latest (Nov. 14) National Wrestling Coaches Association Division III national rankings, second-place Upper Iowa was ranked No. 5 in NCAA Division II, third-place Grand View (Iowa) was ranked No. 1 in the NAIA rankings, and Baker (Kan.) was ranked No. 9 in the NAIA.
A total of 27 Auggies competed in the tournament, combining to go 65-40 on the day with 43 bonus-point victories — 23 pins, five technical falls and 17 major decisions.
Alex Wilson (SR, Oak Grove, Minn./St. Francis HS), ranked No. 1 nationally at 149, reached the century mark for career victories, claiming four bonus-point victories — a pin, major decision and technical-fall wins in the semifinals and finals. Wilson is now 8-0 on the season with three pins, four technical falls and a major decision, and is now 101-31 in his Augsburg career.
Wilson’s twin brother, Aaron Wilson (JR, Oak Grove, Minn./St. Francis HS), finished second at 157, winning three matches by major decision before suffering a loss in a first-period pin by Steven Lawrence of Grand View, ranked No. 6 in the NAIA national rankings. Aaron Wilson is now 6-2 on the year with two pins and three major decisions.
Ryan Epps (JR, Cannon Falls, Minn./Cannon Falls HS), ranked No. 1 nationally at 157 pounds, won his second straight tournament up a weight class at 165, cruising with four pins before claiming the title on a medical forfeit. Epps is now 9-0 overall with six pins.
Lance Benick (SO, Scandia, Minn./Totino-Grace HS), ranked No. 7 at 197, finished second on Saturday. He had two sub-1-minute pins in his opening matches and a 20-3 technical-fall win in the semifinals before being edged 5-4 by David Dow of Baker, the No. 3-ranked 197-pounder in the NAIA, in the finals. Benick is now 7-1 on the year with four pins.
Timothy Mandyck (SO, Coon Rapids, Minn./Coon Rapids HS) had one of the best tournament finishes of his young career, finishing second at heavyweight. He claimed two pins en route to the finals, where he was edged 3-2 by Shawn Beeson of Graceland (Ill.), ranked No. 13 in the NAIA.
Victor Gliva (JR, Farmington, Minn./Farmington HS), ranked No. 5 nationally at 125, finished third in his weight class, with two pins before a 4-3 semifinal loss to Justin Portillo of Grand View, ranked No. 2 in the NAIA. Gliva is now 7-1 on the season with four pins.
Jack Vaselaar (FY, Winona, Minn./Winona Cotter HS) finished third at 149 pounds, scoring major-decision wins in his opening two matches to improve to 5-1 in his opening collegiate campaign. Wyatt Richardson (JR, Grand Meadow, Minn./Grand Meadow HS) used two pins to score a third-place finish at 197 to move to 6-2 on the year. Brady McFarland (SR, Windlake, Wis./Muskego HS) and Nick Rogge (FY, Eastman, Wis./Prairie du Chien HS) shared third place at 174, each going 2-1 on the day.
Placing fifth for the Auggies were Michael Abeyta (FY, McMinville, Ore./McMinville HS) at 157 and Solomon Nielsen (SO, Luverne, Minn./Luverne HS) at 184. Placing sixth were AJ Bethea (FY, Hibbing, Minn./Hibbing HS) at 149 and Ethan Hofacker (JR, Spring Valley, Wis./Spring Valley HS) at heavyweight, and placing seventh was Jacob Forar (FY, Lakeville, Minn./Lakeville North HS).
Augsburg travels to face Minnesota State University-Moorhead on Thursday (12/6) at 7 p.m.
AUGSBURG RESULTS BY WEIGHT CLASS
• 125: Victor Gliva 3-1, third place.
• 133: Quinn Youngs 1-2.
• 141: Gage Zieske 2-2.
• 149: Alex Wilson 4-0, champion; Jack Vaselaar 3-1, third place; AJ Bethea 4-2, sixth place; Jacob Forar 2-2, co-seventh place; Justin Kopet 2-2; Tony Esteban 0-2.
• 157: Aaron Wilson 3-1, second place; Michael Abeyta 5-1, co-fifth place; Shawn Barth 1-2; Boone Young 1-2.
• 165: Ryan Epps 5-0, champion; Josh Verbeten 2-2.
• 174: Brady McFarland 2-1, co-third place; Nick Rogge 2-1, co-third place; Luke Wilson 1-2.
• 184: Solomon Nielsen 5-1, fifth place; Lorenzo Hernandez 2-2; Dylan Lentz 2-2; Brent Chambers 0-2.
• 197: Lance Benick 3-1, second place; Wyatt Richardson 3-1, third place.
• HWT: Timothy Mandyck 3-1, second place; Ethan Hofacker 3-2, sixth place; Luke Zaiser 1-2.