Auggie wrestling starts new year with national title

Dominick Ingram, Staff Writer

The wrestling team traveled to Kentucky over winter break to participate in the National Wrestling Coaches Association Division-III National Duals tournament. The top-ranked Augsburg University wrestling team represented their name well, winning their seventh title since the NWCA duals began in 2002.

   The two-day tournament consisted of 24 teams with 15 of the 24 teams in the Division-III field being ranked in the top 25 in the latest NWCA Division-III national poll, including nine of the top 10 ranked teams. The number-one ranked Auggies’ depth shone throughout the weekend, winning 31 of 40 bouts during the two-day event with several Auggies contributing in different ways.

Augsburg received a first-round bye in the tournament due to their number-one ranking and opened the weekend facing the University of Chicago, claiming a resounding 36–3 win. The Auggies welcomed back Lucas Jeske, the defending NCAA Division-III 165-pound national champion, who made an impact for the Auggies right away. After not competing in the first semester, Jeske had two pins on Friday. After defeating the University of Chicago, the Auggies took care of UW-Lacrosse 29–6. Augsburg won 17 of 20 bouts on the first day of the tournament.

    On the second day of the tournament, the Auggies won 14 of 20 bouts. Augsburg beat Wabash (Ind.) 26–9 in the semifinals to set up a match against the number-three team in the nation, Johnson & Wales (RI) for the Duals National Championship. Augsburg faced adversity early in the match but rallied from an early 10–3 deficit to claim the championship, defeating Johnson & Wales 20–13.

    The Auggies will look to continue building their successful season as they travel to St. John’s University North Country Open this weekend before Battle of the Burgs when they face Wartburg College on Thursday, Jan. 31.

This article was originally published in the Jan. 25, 2019 issue.