New Coach Sprenger Sees Untapped Potential in Auggies

Strong Returners, Promising Newcomers Fuel Augsburg Optimism

By Matt Krumrie

Untapped potential.

That’s how first-year Augsburg University women’s wrestling coach Ali Sprenger sees her team going into the 2023-2024 season.

“Many athletes could have a breakout year,” said Sprenger. “We have athletes who missed making it to nationals who can be all-Americans, athletes who made it to nationals who will be top-place winners, and first-year athletes who will turn some heads and make the national podium.”

Sprenger comes to Augsburg with a long list of credentials as a competitor, coach, and familiar face to the Minnesota wrestling scene. A two-time Olympian and five-time collegiate national champion from New Ulm, Sprenger replaces Jake Short, who resigned after spending two seasons as the program’s head coach. Sprenger (nee Bernard) competed in women’s wrestling at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, China, finishing in fifth place in the 72-kilogram (158.5-pound) weight class. She won a bronze medal at 72 kg at the 2011 FILA World Championships and also competed at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, England, finishing in a tie for 13th place in the 72 kg class. She also has extensive University wrestling and coaching experience in Canada, and prior to coming to Augsburg, she was heavily involved in Minnesota/USA Wrestling.

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