By Paul Freelend
Bobby Edmonds and Chad Wallace each finished second in their weight class to lead UNO as the Maverick wrestlers took fifth place at the NCAA Division II National Tournament in Kenosha, Wis.
Edmonds, ranked fourth at 174 pounds, fell 11-3 to North Dakota State’s top-ranked Todd Fuller. Fuller won his third straight national championship in the weight class and was named the meet’s Most Outstanding Wrestler. Wallace, ranked second at 197 pounds, lost 8-4 to Central Oklahoma’s top-ranked Muhammed Lawal in the final.
UNO entered the tournament ranked fourth in Division II as a team, but their score of 56 team points put them in fifth place. Central Oklahoma won the meet with 128 points, North Dakota State was second with 116.5, South Dakota State was third with 67 points and Ashland was fourth with 65.5 points.
Roderick Ratcliff and Zach Stalder also reached the final rounds at 141 pounds and 184 pounds, respectively. Ratcliff finished fourth, while Stalder placed fifth in his class.
Eli Dominguez was the only other Maverick wrestler to advance past the first consolation round. Dominguez pinned North Carolina-Pembroke’s Curry Pickard at 133 pounds before losing a 7-6 decision to Joey Simcoe of Findlay. Brian Pitts of Adams State scored a major decision over Dan Hilario 18-7 at 125 pounds, UCO’s Michael Barreras pinned Cody Ritter at 149 pounds and Tony Morgan of Carson-Newman edged Kurt Bohaboj 3-1.