Wrestling competes at Pete Willson Invitational

Photo by: Jordan Vredeveld
Photo by: Jordan Vredeveld

WHEATON, Ill. – The Concordia University Wisconsin Wrestling team took part in the historic Pete Willson Invitational this weekend, hosted by Wheaton College. The Falcons had a trio of wrestlers pick up multiple wins at the event, which was held on Friday and Saturday.

THE BASICS
- Falcons Result: 28th place (12.5 points)
- Team Champion: UW-Whitewater (131 points)
- Location: King Arena – Wheaton, Ill.

HOW IT HAPPENED
- Joshua Curcio (133 pounds), Mason Mergener (174 pounds) and John Hinson (197 pounds) each picked up a pair of wins for the Falcons in their respective brackets.

- Curcio (Granger, Ind.) won his first bout, a 6-1 decision over Dylan Dolph of Ohio Northern before dropping his second match. He rebounded with a 10-5 decision of Eric Wales of host Wheaton. Curcio then dropped his last matchup, finishing the tournament with a 2-2 record in the 133-pound bracket.

- Mergener (Crivitz, Wis.) also posted a 2-2 record, winning his middle two matches. He opened with a setback, but rebounded by pinning Jaycee Jensen of Trine in just 1:28. Mergener's second win was a medical forfeit, before he fell in his fourth match, falling out of the tournament with the 2-2 mark.

- Hinson (Glendale, Ariz.) also won his middle two matches, being the third Falcons wrestler to finish with a 2-2 mark. After dropping a close 3-2 decision with eventual runner-up, Mike Swider of Wheaton, Hinson posted a pair of victories before being defeated in his fourth match. His wins were a 9-2 decision over Russ Porter of John Carroll and a 13-2 major decision over Ryan Walsh of Chicago.

- Also gaining wins at the Invitational for the Falcons were Pierce Holtfreter (Las Vegas, Nev.) and Mitchell Slatton (Granger, Ind.). Holtfreter gained an 11-6 decision in his second match of the 157-pound bracket, while Slatton pinned his second opponent in 2:36 in the 184-pound bracket.

ABOUT THE INVITATIONAL
- The Pete Willson Invitational is the oldest and largest small college wrestling tournament in the country. This year's event featured 32 teams from nine states, including several of the top programs in DIII wrestling.

- UW-Whitewater captured the team championship by accumulating 131 points. The Warhawks edged out UW-Parkside (127.5 points).

UP NEXT
- CUW is now off for nearly a month as it gears up for the NCAA Division III West Regionals. The event will be held in Minneapolis and hosted by defending national champion, Augsburg College.