The Vikings have won eight-consecutive duals on the season
FAYETTE, Iowa — A couple of last-second wins fueled the Augustana wrestling teams most impressive win of the season, so far, as it defeated the No. 10 ranked Peacocks of Upper Iowa 19-12 Sunday afternoon in Fayette, Iowa. With the win, Augustana has now won eight-consecutive duals, moves to 8-2 overall (4-0 in the NSIC) and has beaten four ranked opponents on the season.
“I’m proud of this team,” head coach Jason Reitmeier said. “There wasn’t one match that we couldn’t have won. These men understand who they are and what they are capable of doing! They don’t ever worry about who they are wrestling.”
Junior Ethan Cota got the Vikings off to a strong start in the 125 pound bout. Tied 4-4 in the third period, Cota took two reversal points and rode his opponent for the remainder of the match to win 7-4 and give Augustana a 3-0 lead.
Redshirt freshman and No. 9 ranked Jack Huffman followed Cota’s performance with an electrifying win at 133 pounds. Huffman was trailing 5-3 entering the third period, before taking his opponent down with just under a minute left. Once Upper Iowa’s Donny Schmidt escaped to take a 6-5 lead, Huffman turned up the intensity, taking shot after shot, looking for a takedown. With less than a second to go, Huffman gained control and took his opponent down to get the 7-6 win while flipping the script of the entire match.
Leading 6-0 in the dual, redshirt freshman Hunter Burnett dominated the 141 pound bout. Burnett logged two takedowns and two near fall points in the third period to take the lone major decision on the day, giving Augustana a 10-0 lead.
After dropping the 149 pound match, redshirt freshman Jacob Tvinnereim took the Viking’s next victory in the 157 pound bout with a last-second win of his own. Tied 3-3 with under 15 seconds to go, Tvinnereim tallied an escape for the 4-3 win and 13-3 Augustana lead.
Senior Bailey Neises followed Tvinnereim with a 6-3 win at 165 pounds that featured two takedowns for Neises. Junior and No. 8 ranked Ben Kelvington took home the Viking’s last victory of the day at 174 pounds with a 6-2 decision. Kelvington tallied two takedowns in the match as well and stays undefeated against Division II opponents this season.
Overall, Augustana won six of the 10 bouts against Upper Iowa to bring the final score to 19-12. The first-place Vikings remain unbeaten in the NSIC, along with the defending national champion St. Cloud State Huskies.
Augustana 19 Upper Iowa 12
125: Ethan Cota (AUG) over Jared Hensley (UIU) (Dec 7-4)
133: No. 9 Jack Huffman (AUG) over Donny Schmit (UIU) (Dec 7-6)
141: Hunter Burnett (AUG) over Tate Murty (UIU) (MD 12-3)
149: No. 7 Chase Luensman (UIU) over Jebben Keyes (AUG) (Dec 5-3)
157: Jacob Tvinnereim (AUG) over Mac Spotts (UIU) (Dec 4-3)
165: Bailey Neises (AUG) over Brock Benitz (UIU) (Dec 6-3)
174: No. 8 Ben Kelvington (AUG) over Jamie Gehling (UIU) (Dec 6-2)
184: Dalton Hahn (UIU) over Kolby Kost (AUG) (Dec 5-4)
197: No. 2 Nick Baumler (UIU) over Daniel Bishop (AUG) (Dec 2-1)
285: Triston Westerlund (UIU) over Steven Hajas (AUG) (Dec 5-3)
The Vikings are back in action next weekend when they take on the UMary Marauders Friday at 7 p.m. and the Minot State Beavers Saturday at 2 p.m. Both matches will take place inside the Elmen Center in Sioux Falls and Saturday’s match serves as Augustana’s senior day.