After starting their season with a win over Wheaton last Wednesday, the wrestling team headed to Concordia, WI on Saturday to test its mettle against 332 athletes from dozens of regional schools in an unscored individual tournament.
Putting in Chicago’s best performance, third-year Ben Hart took fourth place in the talent-stacked 133-pound weight class, wherein nationally second-ranked fourth-year Adam Johnson of North Central eventually earned the crown.
Entering the invite with a first-round bye, Hart won the next two matches before falling to first-year Alex Dahl of UW–Whitewater. In the losers’ bracket, Hart fought back with three victories, making it to a rematch with Dahl in the third-place round where he fell after 4:57 to give Dahl the victory.
Putting in the Maroons’ other placing effort, third-year Justin Lucas notched a sixth-place finish in the 184-pound class. Also granted a first-round bye, Lucas lost in the third round and then won another two in the losers’ bracket before second-year Luke Haag of UW–Parkside won in a 4–0 decision.
The tournament style of the invite allowed Chicago to enter multiple wrestlers in different weight classes. Heavyweight weapon first-year Ryan Hatten debuted in his Maroon career alongside third-year 285-pounder Tom Nero. Losing in the first round, Hatten fought back with four straight wins in the consolation bracket before a defeat by the eventual third-place winner, third-year Trevor Kaufman of Loras. Hatten placed eighth.
Other Maroons to place in the top eight of their weight classes included second-year Troy Carlson and first-year David Kneisel, at the 164- and 174-pound classes, respectively.