March 1 2018
Seniors Carlos Fuentez and Frank Aiello both qualified for the NCAA Division III national tournament after competing at NCAA Upper Midwest Regionals on Feb. 23-24. This is Fuentez’s third time qualifying for nationals and Aiello’s first nationals competition.
Fuentez received the Most Outstanding Wrestler award at the end of the competition because he won the 125-pounds weight class. After entering the tournament as the top seed at 125-pounds, Fuentez won his two opening matches with pins, the first at 5:42 and the second at 1:34. In the semifinals, Fuentez was on the winning side of a 10-5 decision and finished with another 9-5 decision victory in the final.
In the 165-pounds weight class, Aiello started off strong with an 11-4 decision and winning a close 3-2 decision on the first day. On the second day of competition Aiello was able to qualify for nationals by winning the semifinal round with a 3-2 decision. Afterwards, Aiello declared a medical forfeit to the top-ranked wrestler in the 165-pounds weight class and finish as the Upper Midwest Regionals Runner-up.
Sophomore Isaac Odell and junior Max Gierke both finished fifth in their respective weight classes. Odell had two strong victories to start off the weekend by a 16-4 major decision and a 10-2 major decision. Gierke also opened with two victories, one by a fall at 5:08 and a 3-0 decision. However, Odell then lost a 3-1 decision, and Gierke lost a 9-3 decision and a match by pin. Odell would win a 4-3 decision and lose a 9-7 decision before winning a 12-3 major decision to finish in fifth place. Gierke came back from losing two matches in a row to win a 7-2 decision and finish in fifth place as well.