Auggie women sending 3 to NCWWC nationals

NAPERVILLE, Ill. — Qualifying three individuals to the upcoming National College Women’s Wrestling Championships, the Augsburg University women’s wrestling team finished in fifth place at the NCWWC Region IV Regionals, held on Sunday at North Central University.

With 60 points, Augsburg finished in a tie for fifth place in the nine-team meet, featuring five teams ranked in the top 20 in the latest National Wrestling Coaches Association national rankings for NCAA-affiliated schools. No. 1-ranked North Central (Ill.) won the meet with 219.0 points, followed by No. 9-ranked Aurora (Ill.) with 106, No. 18-ranked Wisconsin-Stevens Point with 103.5, No. 15-ranked Northern Michigan with 82.0 and No. 14 Augsburg tied with Augustana (Ill.) with 60 points each.

Three Auggies finished in the top four in their weight classes, earning berths in the National College Women’s Wrestling Championships for NCAA-affiliated schools, which will be held March 8-9 at the Alliant Energy PowerHouse in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. In its five-year history of women’s wrestling, Augsburg now has 52 national tournament qualifiers (44 NCWWC, eight WCWA).

Nina Makem (JR, Shakopee, Minn./Shakopee HS), the No. 4-ranked wrestler nationally at 155 pounds, earned her third straight trip to the NCWWC national meet, winning the 155-pound weight class. She opened her run with her quickest pin of the season, a seven-second pin of Kiara Meek of Dubuque (Iowa). She then topped two ranked wrestlers to claim her second career regional title, and the 11th in Augsburg history — a 4-3 win over No. 6-ranked Tiera Jimerson of North Central, and a 3-2 win over No. 3-ranked London Houston of North Central.

A two-time All-American who finished second at 136 pounds in 2022 and fifth at 136 in 2023, Makem is now 25-1 this season with nine pins and nine technical falls, and 81-13 in her career with 20 pins and 43 technical falls — now the winningest women’s wrestler in school history. Her 20 career pins are tied for third-most in program history, and her 43 technical falls are a school record.

Autumn Flanigan (SR, Troy, Mo./Troy Buchanan HS) earned her fourth national tournament berth with a third-place finish at 143 pounds, rallying from an 11-0 technical fall loss in her opening match with four straight victories. She scored two second-period technical falls in the wrestlebacks, then beat No. 7-ranked Alissa Caltagirone of Northern Michigan 3-0 in the consolation semifinals. In the third-place match, she claimed a 9-0 win over Dubuque’s Tatum Levendahl — the same wrestler that beat her 11-0 in the opening match.

A national tournament qualifier each of the last two seasons at 130 pounds and an All-American with a third-place finish at 136 pounds in 2021, Flanigan is now 14-6 on the season with five pins and six technical falls. She is now 59-32 in her college career with 23 pins and 22 technical falls, second in school history in career pins and sixth in career technical falls.

Melissa Jacobs (SR, Belle Plaine, Minn./Belle Plaine HS) earned her fourth career national tournament berth with a fourth-place finish at 191 pounds. She overcame an opening-round pin with three straight victories before being pinned in the third-place match. She claimed a 2:52 pin of Taylor Schulz of Wisconsin-Stevens Point in the wrestlebacks, with her lone losses coming on pins by No. 9-ranked Sydney Manos of Aurora (Ill.) in the opening match and the third-place match.

Jacobs qualified for both the NCWWC and WCWA national tournaments in 2020 at 170 pounds, and the NCWWC nationals at 191 pounds in 2021. Jacobs is now 14-13 on the season with five pins and a technical fall, and 47-55 in her career with 15 pins and four technical falls.

Three Auggies had their seasons end at the regional. Madison Horn (SR, Stillwater, Minn./Stillwater HS) went 2-2 with two pins to finish seventh at 170 pounds, finishing the year 13-10 and her collegiate career at 29-29. Mikalah Konz (SO, Bingham Lake, Minn./Windom HS) finished in eighth place at 136 pounds, and Isabelle Huss (SO, Circle Pines, Minn./Centennial HS) competed at 191 pounds.

NCWWC Region 4 Regionals Results

AUGSBURG INDIVIDUAL RESULTS
136 — Mikalah Konz 0-3, 8th place.
143 — Autumn Flanigan 4-1, 3rd place.
155 — Nina Makem 3-0, 1st place.
170 — Madison Horn 2-2, 7th place.
191 — Melissa Jacobs 3-2, 4th place; Isabelle Huss 0-2.

Check out Auggies Women’s Wrestling at athletics.augsburg.edu.