Titans Defeat Blugolds For Fifth-Place WIAC Finish

UW-Oshkosh compiled a 1-2 record in dual meets and finished fifth at the WIAC Wrestling Championship held Sunday (Feb. 17) in Eau Claire.

For the first time in the championship's 58-year history, the event featured a dual-meet format. The six participating teams were given seeds based on their performance in WIAC dual meets held during the regular season.

Top-seeded UW-Whitewater earned its second straight WIAC title and 14th overall with a 23-10 victory over second-seeded UW-La Crosse in the championship match. The Warhawks advanced to the title contest with a 42-7 win over UW-Platteville.

UW-Stevens Point placed third with a 35-7 victory over UW-Platteville and UW-Oshkosh fifth with a 30-22 triumph over UW-Eau Claire. UW-Oshkosh concluded the regular season with a 6-11 dual meet record.

Fourth-seeded UW-Oshkosh suffered a 23-22 loss to fourth-seeded UW-Platteville in the opener. The Pioneers were helped to the victory by UW-Oshkosh forfeits at 125 and 141 pounds.

On the mat, UW-Oshkosh defeated UW-Platteville in five of the eight bouts. A pin decided two matches as 165-pounder Jake Moczynski (Fr. • South Milwaukee) stuck Peter Crocco to the mat in 41 seconds and 174-pounder Dan Schiferl (Jr. • Stoughton) glued Nathan Schmitz to the surface in 3:18.

The Titans also received wins from Mason McMullen (Jr. • Milwaukee) at 149 pounds, Tyler Wetenkamp (So. • Manitowoc) at 197 and Brandon Clapper (So. • Plainfield) at 285. McMullen defeated Brad Blechschmidt, 15-1, while Wetenkamp shut out Sean Yaros, 6-0. Clapper posted a 4-1 victory over Abe Graziano.

UW-Oshkosh suffered a 42-10 loss to third-seeded UW-Stevens Point in its next match. The Titans earned their points on Moczynski's 12-3 win over Jordan Schulte at 165 pounds and Wetenkamp's victory on a forfeit at 197.

UW-Stevens Point scored 24 points on four pins and another 12 courtesy of two UW-Oshkosh forfeits. The Titans came up short in two hard-fought contests as David Rosenau (Sr. • Van Dyne) lost 2-0 to Lucas McGann at 133 pounds and Clapper lost 5-3 to Jordan Koranda at 285.

In the fifth-place match, only five contests were held as UW-Eau Claire issued three forfeits and UW-Oshkosh two. The Titans received pins in 46 seconds from Nazar Kulchytskyy (Jr. • Sosnivka) over Matt Koch at 165 pounds and 1:51 from Clapper over Luke Ortscheid at 285.

UW-Oshkosh's remaining winners on the mat were McMullen at 149 pounds and Schiferl at 184. McMullen defeated Steve Fisher, 11-5, while Schiferl ousted Mat Rieckhoff, 8-2.  

UW-La Crosse's Adam Sheley was named the John Peterson Wrestler of the Meet, while UW-Stevens Point's Johnny Johnson was selected as the Mertz Mortorelli Coach of the Year.

Qualification for the NCAA Division III Championship will be based on regional competition held March 2. UW-Eau Claire, UW-Oshkosh and UW-Platteville will compete in a regional hosted by Augsburg College (Minn.), while UW-La Crosse, UW-Stevens Point and UW-Whitewater travel to Elmhurst College (Ill.). The national championship will be March 15-16 in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.