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Will Div. III Nationals Duals once again become a Wartburg vs. Augsburg struggle?
2014 NWCA Multi-Divisional National Duals
Division III Preview
Last year’s Placement Duals:
Championship: Wartburg 24, Elmhurst 10
Third Place: Centenary 20, Cortland State 18
Fifth Place: Wisconsin-LaCrosse 25, Wesleyan 14
Seventh Place: Coe 35, Johnson & Wales 7
2014 Ranked Teams (Location/Record) – Including individually-ranked wrestlers
1. Wartburg College (Waverly, Iowa/ 5-0) — 125 Gilbert Camacho, 3rd; 133 Kenny Anderson, 1st; 141 Connor Campo, 6th; 149 Brandon Welter, 8th; 157 Drew Wagonhoffer, 4th; 165 Cole Welter, 3rd; 174 Landon Williams, 1st; 184 Sam Upah, 5th; 197 Puna Soriano, 5th; Hwt Ryan Fank, 3rd.
Notes: Even with a new coach in Eric Keller, who served as an associate head coach with former mentor Jim Miller (who led the Knights to 10 NCAA team championships) and seven National Duals titles, the Knights are just as strong with all ten wrestlers ranked. This includes Gilbert Camacho, who finished third in 2012, two-time NCAA champion Kenny Anderson and heavyweight Ryan Fank, a two-time All-American.
2. Augsburg College (Minneapolis, Minn./4-0) — 125 Mike Fuenffinger, 2nd; 133 Kirk Anderson, 4th; 157 Will Keeter, 9th; 197 Matt Hechsel, 2nd; Hwt Chad Johnson, 1st.
Notes: After seeing his team finish tenth in last year’s NCAAs, coach Mark Matzek (an Augsburg alum who is in his fifth year in the Twin Cities) has the Auggies back where they’ve been in the past when Augsburg won 11 NCAA team championships while also earning six National Duals titles. Defending NCAA champ Chad Johnson remains the national stud at heavyweight, while Mike Fuenffinger and Matt Heschel each claimed seventh last March.
3. Wabash College (Crawfordsville, Ind./3-1) — 133 Levi Moss, 7th; 157 Reece Lefever, 3rd; 165 Josh Sampson, 9th; 174 Conner Lefever, 6th; 184 Riley Lefever, 3rd.
Notes: The Little Giants, under tenth-year coach Brian Anderson, have come a long way since finishing 39th as a team in last year’s NCAAs. One reason is the performances of the three Lefever brothers, including Reece who finished seventh in last year’s nationals.
4. Wisconsin Whitewater (6-2) — 133 Jimmy Nehls, 9th; 165 Cedric Gibson, 4th; 197 Shane Siefert, 1st; Hwt Anthony Edgren, 2nd.
Notes: Since moving from Wisconsin-LaCrosse to Whitewater in 2004, head coach Tim Fader guided the Warhawks to the school’s best finish ever last March when his team claimed third place. Among his six All-Americans in 2013 were returning starters Cedric Gibson (third), Shane Siefert (fourth) and Anthony Edgren (fifth).
5. Wilkes University (Pa./10-1) — 133 Myzar Mendoza, 10th; 149 Mark Hartenstine, 7th; 157 Kris Krawchuck, 2nd; 197 Eric Bach, 10th.
Notes: The Colonels under 11th-year coach Jon Laudenslager have also made great strides since finishing 19th in last year’s NCAAs. That includes the return of Kris Krawchuck, who finished second at 157 pounds last March.
6. Concordia Morehead (Minn./6-1) — 149 Jacob Long, 3rd; 8. Kyle LeDuc, 8th; Hwt Cody Kasprick, 4th.
Notes: The Cobbers under first-year head coach Matt Nagel return one All-American from last year’s team: Jacob Long (fifth).
9. Coe College (Cedar Rapids, Iowa/7-1) — 133 Jimmy Gotto, 5th; 157 Dimitry Boyer, 5th; 174 Ethan Ball, 7th.
Notes: The Kohawks, under head coach John Oostendorp, recently finished 3-1 at the Desert Duals in Las Vegas when they defeated Olivet, Delaware Valley and Heidelberg. 2013 national runner-up Jimmy Gotto went undefeated in Vegas.
11. Wisconsin-LaCrosse (6-1) — 141 Austin Schoen, 7th; 184 Eric Twohey, 2nd.
Notes: The biggest improved for coach Dave Malacek has been Eric Twohey, who failed to place in last year’s nationals but is ranked second nationally in 2014.
12. Luther College (Decorah, Iowa, 8-2) — 125 Garrett Wangsness, 7th; 133 Evan Obert, 6th; 165 Garret Bonte, 10th; 184 Jayden DeVilbiss, 8th;
19. Mount Union (Alliance, Ohio/4-1) — No Ranked Wrestlers
Notes: There are no ranked wrestlers on this current Raider team, coached by second-year man Bill Schindel, but his younger brother Joe Schindel won the 165-pound title with a 4-0 record at the recent Citrus Invitational in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
20. Springfield College (Mass., 0-0) — 125 Tom Casper, 9th; 157 Devin Biscaha, 1st.
Notes: Devin Biscaha made history last year when the native of Jackson, N.J., became the school’s first NCAA Division III champion.
22. St. John’s University (Collegeville, Minn., 6-6) — 141 Ben Henle, 9th;
Notes: Henle was ranked as high as fifth before losing to Brian Travis of Dubuque in the recent Chicago Duals.
• Centenary College (0-2) — No Ranked Wrestlers
Notes: The Cyclones under eighth-year coach John Garriques are rebuilding after his team finished sixth in last year’s NCAAs.
• Elmhurst College (Illinois, 1-4) — 149 Ryan Prater, 2nd; Hwt Danny Vargas, 6th;
Notes: None of coach Steve Marianetti’s five All-Americans return from last year’s national runner-up team, but he did welcome former NCAA Division I wrestler Ryan Prater from Illinois.
• Loras College (Dubuque, Iowa/3-5) — 141 Nick Steger, 5th; 157 Steve Dewitt, 7th.
Notes: Coach Randy Steward, in his 21st year, lost his only All-American from last year.
• New York University (3-4) — No Ranked Wrestlers
Notes: Brandon Jones, who placed fifth last year for NYU, returns to his hometown (originally from West Des Moines) for this event.