MEQUON, Wis. – Concordia Wisconsin enters the CCIW Wrestling Championship on Thursday afternoon with hopes of capturing a team title or individual championships. Below is information and notes for wrestling fans in preparation of the tournament.
- Teams Competing: Augustana, Concordia Wisconsin, Elmhurst, Millikin, MSOE, Lakeland, North Central, Wheaton
- Where: King Arena (Wheaton, Ill.)
- When: Thursday, February 9
- Time: Begins at 1 pm until completion
- Live Coverage: Wheaton (host) will provide live coverage of the championship matches (click here) and the third place matches (click here). Also, brackets will be updated on a regular basis (click here).
- ENTERING A NEW ARENA: Concordia Wisconsin won many Northern Wrestling Association (NWA) titles in program history, but it doesn't compare to what the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin (CCIW) Wrestling Championship is. The tournament has a storied history dating back to 1957 and over the past decade, it has been a mix between Elmhurst and North Central as the team to defeat.
- THE USUAL LINEUP: The Falcons will bring its usual lineup of Matthew Saldana (125), Ramiro Vasquez (133), Joshua Curcio (141), Miguel Betancourt (149), Eli Were (157), Eric Martinson (165), Mason Mergener (174), Mitchell Slatton (184), Mason Baumgartner (197) and John Hinson (285).
- WE'VE SEEN YOU BEFORE: Concordia Wisconsin has competed against several of the CCIW foes during this season, posting a 2-2 record. They defeated former NWA competitors MSOE (37-7) and Lakeland (43-9), while losing to Elmhurst (11-36) and North Central (16-24). The Falcons also battle CCIW wrestlers at the various tournaments throughout the season.
- FRONT-RUNNERS: It is difficult and impossible to predict who will win individuals titles on Thursday, but guesses can be made when looking at the latest National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA) rankings. Concordia Wisconsin's Mason Baumgartner appears to be the front-runner at 197 points via his fifth place ranking. In addition, Mason Mergener is ranked 10th in the D3Wrestle.com poll at 174 pounds. There are other CCIW individuals ranked in the top-10 of both polls who are likely to stand on the podium at the end of the day.