UIU wrestling crowns 4 All-Americans
UIU wrestling crowns 4 All-Americans
By Jerry Wadian
Upper Iowa crowned four All-Americans at the DII National Wrestling Tournament in Birmingham, Ala., over the weekend.
Blake Sorenson led the Peacocks, finishing as the runner-up at 174.
Carl Broghammer came back from a first-round loss to earn third place at 197.
Bryce Lumzy and Postville’s Mitch Schultz placed sixth at 184 and 157, respectively.
As a team, UIU finished fifth in the 45-team field. However, their 49 points was not enough to earn one of the four team trophies. In the team competition, Nebraska-Kearney upset top-ranked St. Cloud State, 108-105; it was the second straight title for Kearney.
Afterwards, Peacock head coach Heath Grimm said, “We have a lot to be proud of, and most the schools in DII would like to be where we are.
“What makes me proudest about this National is our sustained success. This is the fourth year in a row that we have finished in the top six (fifth, sixth, fourth and third).
“On the other hand, our expectations are always high, so fifth is sort of bittersweet,” he acknowledged.
Sorenson capped his sophomore season with his first All-American honors. The Denver native finished at 35-12 on the year. At the tournament, he cruised through the first two matches, winning 15-4 and 10-5. In the semifinal, he was tied, 1-1, when he caught Patrick Martinez of Nebraska-Kearney for the winning takedown with just seconds left in the match. However, he fell behind in the opening seconds of the title match and later injured a leg in coming out of the down position; he basically finished the match wrestling on one leg.
Broghammer of Manchester won a bronze medal for the second straight season. He lost, 3-1, in round one on a late takedown.
“I think he was just a bit tight,” noted Grimm. “After that, he showed a lot of character, knowing he needed to open up and wrestle aggressively.”
The redshirt junior did fight back, pinning his next two opponents, and won another bronze with 9-1 and 7-3 decisions in the final two matches.
This makes two years in a row he has had to go through the losers’ bracket to earn bronze, thus earning the appellation, “Backside Brawler” from coach Grimm.
Schultz is another repeat All-American, finishing sixth for the second year in a row. The former Pirate won his first two matches on 6-1 and 3-2 decisions. However, he dropped his next two matches. In the fight for fifth, the senior tore either an ACL or a PCL.
Coach Grimm came out on the mat and started to injury-default, but the tough Schultz wanted to finish the match and, like Sorenson, he finished wrestling virtually on one leg.
Lumzy is a redshirt senior who also won his first two matches by decision, but lost the final three on his way to his first trip to the awards stand.
Grimm stated, “Bryce was a huge sparkplug for us, really pumping us up after losses by our first two wrestlers.”
Franklin was still favoring his injured ankle in losing his bid for a third straight championship. Gobin took eventual champion Joey Davis of Notre Dame, Ohio, (33-0) to the limit before falling, 11-7. Gobin, a senior, also lost his second match of the tourney.
Besides Sorenson, two other Peacocks (Gobin and Lumzy) lost to the eventual champion.
As for the injuries, Grimm stated, “There are no excuses. Injuries are a part of wrestling.
UIU loses four of the wrestlers who qualified for Nationals. Schultz, Franklin, Gobin and Lumzy all walked off the mat for the final time.
“It was really something to see them walk off the mat and wave to the crowd one last time,” Grimm said.
The Peacocks had a healthy contingent of over 70 fans that made the long trip to Alabama.
Sorenson and Broghammer both return next season, along with three other starters from this season as well as a stable of good young wrestlers including Lincoln Monroe of Valley and Quinn Meirick of Turkey Valley.
“We’re excited about next year and hope to take a large group to Nationals and bring home team and individual hardware,” Grimm concluded.
Nebraska-Kearney, 108; 2. St. Cloud State, 105; 3. Notre Dame (O), 103.5; 4. Central Oklahoma, 73; 5. Upper Iowa, 49; 6. Newberry, 43.5; 7. Minnesota-Mankato, 35.531. Augustana, 9.5; 41t. Minnesota-Moorhead, 0.
Individual UIU Results
174- Sorenson, 2nd- maj. dec. Budke, 15-4; dec. McKeown 10-5; dec. Martinez, 3-1; lost, 14-3, to Burgey.
197- Broghammer, 3rd- lost, 3-1, to Ferrell; threw Searer, 1:29; threw Kriss, 6:43; maj. dec Docken, 9-1; dec. Johnson, 7-3.
184- Schultz, 6th- dec. Brown, 6-1; dec. Keck, 3-2; lost, 5-3, dec. to Smith; lost,10-2, to Walters; lost ,8-1, to Debus.
157- Lumzy, 6th- dec. Hobley, 7-1; dec. Schmitz, 8-4; lost, 3-1, to Dauphin, lost, 9-5, to Pelton, lost to White, 3-2.
165- Gobin, DNP- lost, 11-7, to Davis; thrown by Schaefer, 6:21.
1133- Franklin, DNP- lost, 8-7, to Hale; lost 7-3, to Macfee.