Five falls lead to snappy 55-0 blanking of Bethany

By Jacob Knabel on Dec. 1, 2023 in Wrestling

SEWARD, Neb. – If you blinked, you missed this one. The Concordia University Wrestling team needed roughly 40 minutes to polish off visiting Bethany College (Kan.) in a dual inside Friedrich Arena on Friday (Dec. 1). The Bulldogs won with bonus points in all but one match and racked up five pins while throttling the Swedes, 55-0, in one of the most lopsided duals in program history.

This was the first outing for Head Coach Chase Clasen’s squad (3-2, 2-2 GPAC) since it dropped two duals to conference foes on Nov. 21. Concordia got that bad taste out of its mouth and treated the home crowd to a blowout on Friday. The Bulldogs have won their three home duals by a combined score of 141-15.

“Our guys went out and wrestled and didn’t overthink things,” Clasen said. “They opened up and they got to leg attacks. Flat out – they wrestled. A lot of them wrestled their match. That’s one of the hardest things to do in this sport – to wrestle your best match. I’m super happy about that. There’s still some improvement to be made. You can’t be too displeased but ultimately there are some things we’ve got to work on. It feels good to get back into the win column and show that last Tuesday wasn’t who we are.”

The 55 team points put on the board were the most for the program since it defeated Dakota Wesleyan, 58-0, in November of 2018. Pins were delivered by Creighton Baughman (141) in 1:38, TJ Allen (149) in 4:11, Barret Brandt (165) in 1:29, Stephen Duffy (174) in 1:40 and Teegan Tschampel (197) in 0:35. This has been a theme for the Syracuse, Neb., native Brandt (16-4), who has already piled up 15 pins on the season. As for Baughman, ranked 10th nationally at 141 pounds, he’s now 5-0 in duals this 2023-24 campaign.

From a ratings perspective, Porterville, Calif., native Hunter Weimer (184) and Arroyo Grande, Calif., native Mason Garcia (285) picked up notable victories. Weimer erased Triston Vande Velde (preseason NAIA No. 25 at 184) by technical fall, 15-0, in 3:34. Normally a 197-pounder, Garcia moved to heavyweight on Friday and took a 7-1 decision over Rocky Whitehead, who was ranked 21st nationally at 285 to begin this season. Tschampel also moved up a weight class as Clasen tinkered with the dual lineup.

Said Clasen, “It’s good to find out which guys can perform under the lights. It’s one thing to win in a practice room. It’s another thing to win out here in front of the public. Teegan stepped in at 197 and got a fall in the first period. That’s awesome. Mason bumped up to heavyweight and got a win over a ranked wrestler – that’s awesome. Sometimes there are some growing pains. I think we’re figuring it out and getting better.”

Other not previously mentioned wins were turned in by Bryson Bussinger (forfeit at 125), Grant Wells (technical fall at 133) and Jeaven Scdoris (forfeit at 157). A late takedown for the Lincoln Lutheran alum Wells pushed him over the threshold for the tech fall. As a team, the Bulldogs amassed 17 takedowns and five four-point nearfalls. The Swedes (0-3), a member of the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference, did not record a single takedown or any nearfall points. Bethany has also dropped duals this season to Ottawa University (Kan.) and Oklahoma Wesleyan University.

Said Tschampel, “The mindset going into tonight was just to grind and outwork our opponent. We wanted to put pressure on them and score points. That’s what we worked on all week and that’s what we did. On Saturday I was told I was getting bumped up. Me being so light, I was like, ‘I’m going to start eating now.’ I was able to reassess things and how I wanted to attack things. Coming into tonight, I felt really free.”

Select Bulldogs will be back at it on Saturday (Dec. 2) with a short trip to Crete, Neb., for the Doane University Open. First whistle is set for 9 a.m. CT. The only other remaining event on the schedule prior to Christmas is the Avila University Duals set for Saturday, Dec. 16.