CRETE, Neb. – Fresh off Friday’s 51-6 thumping of Benedictine College (Kan.) in dual action, the Concordia University wrestling team entered 14 competitors into Saturday (Dec. 8)’s Doane Open in Crete. One of four Bulldogs to reach at least the quarterfinals of their respective brackets, junior Deandre Chery claimed second place at 174 pounds.
First-year head coach Levi Calhoun’s squad combined for 23 victories on the day. The Doane Open marked the team’s fourth tournament of the season.
“This tournament was significantly tougher than in years past,” Calhoun said. “There were a lot more teams coming in with something like 350 wrestlers. Deandre dominated his way to the finals and then got thrown in a head lock and was pinned, but he had a really good day. I think he was disappointed he didn’t get to wrestle last night.
“Then Michael Stann had a great day. He wrestled really tough. Walker (Fisher) had a pretty good day. He looked really solid. This was his first full tournament of the year because he’s been battling injury.”
Chery rampaged his way to the title bout with pins in the second, quarterfinal and semifinal rounds. He may have gotten one in the first round, but his opponent was forced to end the match early due to injury. Ranked seventh in the NAIA at 174, Chery turned in a win over Nickolas Madsen of Morningside. His bid for a second tournament title this season was thwarted by Grand View University (Iowa)’s Gabriel Rangel in the final.
Stann went 4-2 in the heavyweight bracket with his lone losses coming against foes from the University of Nebraska. Stann recorded pins over both Andrew Poumele (unattached) and Ronald Broyles (Benedictine) during his run to the quarterfinals.
Fisher had wrestled just one match prior to Saturday. His season ramped up with a pin and a victory by major decision in the first two rounds. He then fell victim to Rangel in the quarterfinals before rebounding with a 9-2 decision over Chris Guest of Grand View. Fisher was 3-2 at the Doane Open.
Meanwhile, Kyle Carey (141) won three matches and two victories apiece were earned by Chris James (285), Josh Nelsen (184) and Mario Ybarra (125). Nelsen also reached the quarterfinals via decisions by scores of 7-2 and 7-3, respectively, over the first two rounds.
“Overall we wrestled tough and got some good wins,” Calhoun said. “There is a lot to improve on. We got exposed in some areas but we’re excited to keep moving forward.”
The Bulldogs will be off from competition during the upcoming finals week. They will return to action a week from Sunday (Dec. 16) for the GPAC/Cascade Duals in Chandler, Ariz. The schedule for that date has not been announced.