Auggies take 3rd at regional, send 8 to national tourney

(NOTE: A correction was made in the team standings on Monday, with North Central scoring 187.5 points for first place, McKendree scoring 150.0 points for second place and Augsburg scoring 149.5 points for third place. Lindenwood was fourth with 64.5 points and Aurora was fifth with 46.5 points. The story has been corrected/)

NAPERVILLE, Ill. — Qualifying eight wrestlers to the national championships with two regional champions, the Augsburg University women’s wrestling team finished third at the National Collegiate Women’s Wrestling Championships Region IV Regional on Sunday.

Augsburg, the No. 4-ranked team in the latest National Wrestling Coaches Association NCAA tournament rankings, finished third in the 12-team regional with 149.5 points, behind top-ranked North Central (Ill.) with 187.5 points and No. 3-ranked McKendree (Ill.) with 150.0 points. No. 16-ranked Lindenwood (Mo.) finished fourth with 64.5 points, and No. 12-ranked Aurora (Ill.) finished fifth with 46.5 points. The regional was considered the most competitive of the five regions nationally.

Eight Auggies finished among the top four competitors in their weight classes, qualifying for the NCWWC National Championships for NCAA schools, to be held March 3-4 at the Alliant Energy PowerHouse in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. In its four-season history, Augsburg now has 49 national tournament qualifiers (41 NCWWC, 8 WCWA).

Marlynne Deede (SR, Springville, Utah/Springville HS) qualified for her fifth national tournament in her college career, and fourth NCWWC tournament, winning the 155-pound weight class with four victories — two pins and two technical falls. The No. 2-ranked wrestler nationally at 155, Deede scored a 1:31 pin of No. 4-ranked Malea Palahniuk of North Central in the semifinals, then claimed a 10-0, 2:32 technical fall over top-ranked Tiera Jimerson of North Central in the finals. The win was Deede’s second over Jimerson in three meetings this season, and Deede is now 5-0 all-time against Palahniuk in her college career. A three-time All-American (third at 155 in 2022 and 2021, sixth in 2020), Deede is now 27-2 this season with eight pins and 17 technical falls, and is 73-20 with 20 pins and 41 technical falls in her career.

Katie Lange (SO, Sherburn, Minn./Martin County West HS) qualified for her first national tournament with three technical falls and a pin, winning the 143-pound weight class. Lange outscored her opponents by a 35-0 margin in her four victories, wrestling for just 10:24 of a possible 24 minutes. The No. 3-ranked 143-pounder nationally, Lange claimed a 3:52 pin of Alana Duggan of Lindenwood (Mo.) in the semifinals, then scored a 10-0, 4:41 technical fall over No. 8-ranked london Houston of North Central in the finals. Lange is now 29-6 this season with nine pins and 15 technical falls, and is 47-7 in her college career with 16 pins and 23 technical falls.

Nina Makem (SO, Shakopee, Minn./Shakopee HS), ranked No. 2 nationally at 136 pounds, finished second in her weight class to qualify for her second straight national tournament. Makem claimed a pin and two 10-0 technical falls leading up to the finals, but was edged 3-2 by No. 5-ranked Yele Aycock of North Central in the finals. Makem and Aycock are now 2-2 in their meetings this season, with three of the four matches decided by one point. Last year’s national runner-up at 136, Makem is now 24-4 this season with eight pins and 14 technical falls, and is 53-10 in her career with 11 pins and 31 technical falls.

Brooklyn Hays (FY, Lindon, Utah/Pleasant Grove HS), ranked No. 5 nationally at 155 pounds, moved up to 170 pounds in the regional and qualified for her first national tournament, finishing second. She scored two first-period pins to reach the final, but dropped a 10-0, 35-second technical fall to top-ranked Yelena Makoyed of North Central. Hays is now 29-10 in her first college season with 19 pins and four technical falls, including a 9-3 record with eight pins at 170.

Gabrielle Torgerson (SR, Spooner, Wis./Cumberland HS) qualified for her fifth national tournament, and fourth NCWWC nationals, finishing third at 123 pounds at the regional. The No. 8-ranked 123-pounder nationally, Torgerson claimed two sub-minute pins before a loss in the semifinals. But she rebounded with a 2:18 pin in the wrestlebacks and a 6-1 win over Alisha Narvaez of McKendree in the third-place match. A three-time All-American, Torgerson is now 27-9 this season with 11 pins and 10 technical falls. She is now 67-24 in her career, with 27 pins and 22 technical falls.

Autumn Flanigan (JR, Troy, Mo./Troy Buchanan HS) qualified for her third NCWWC national tournament with a third-place regional finish at 130 pounds. After a loss to top-ranked Cameron Guerin in the semifinals, Flanigan rebounded with a 17-second pin of Megan Stutsman of McKendree in the wrestlebacks, then claimed a 4-2 triumph over No. 3-ranked Sara Sterner of North Central in the third-place match. A 2021 All-American, Flanigan is now 21-14 this season and 42-24 in her career.

Tateum Park (JR, Davenport, Iowa/Davenport North HS) qualified for her first national tournament with a third-place finish at 116 pounds. After wins in her first two matches, she dropped to the wrestlebacks with a loss to No. 2-ranked Jaslynn Gallegos of North Central. But she earned her national berth in a big way in the wrestlebacks, claiming two 10-0 technical fall wins, over Allison Meyer of William Jewell (Mo.) and Hannah Suboni-Kaufman of Augustana (Ill.). Park is now 17-16 on the season and 18-18 in her career.

Ellisa Jimenez (FY, Cathedral City, Calif./Xavier College Preparatory HS) qualified for her first national tournament with a fourth-place finish at 143 pounds, claiming two pins in the wrestlebacks to clinch the national bid in her 2-2 regional performance. Jimenez is 9-10 in her first collegiate season with seven pins.

Kahlea Jolly (SR, Lino Lakes, Minn./Centennial HS) finished fifth at 155 pounds, but lost in the true fourth-place match to see her national bid fall short. Melissa Jacobs (SR, Belle Plaine, Minn./Belle Plaine HS (Scott West)) finished fifth at 191, Madi Horn (JR, Stillwater, Minn./Stillwater HS) finished sixth at 170, Kya Rybachek (JR, Mountain Iron, Minn./Hibbing HS) finished seventh at 136 and Faith Tuttle (SR, North St. Paul, Minn./North St. Paul HS) competed at 191.

NCWWC Northwest Regional Qualifier Results

Augsburg Individual Results
116 — Tateum Park 4-1, 3rd place.
123 — Gabrielle Torgerson 4-1, 3rd place.
130 — Autumn Flanigan 3-1, 3rd place.
136 — Nina Makem 3-1, 2nd place; Kya Rybachek 3-2, 7th place.
143 — Katie Lange 4-0, 1st place; Ellisa Jimenez 2-2, 4th place.
155 — Marlynne Deede 4-0, 1st place; Kahlea Jolly 3-3, 5th place.
170 — Brooklyn Hays 2-1, 2nd place; Madi Horn 1-3, 6th place.
191 — Melissa Jacobs 2-2, 5th place; Faith Tuttle 0-2.

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