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Augsburg Athletics | March 15, 2015

Augsburg wins first national title since 2010

2015 DIII Wrestling Championship: Day Two Recap

HERSHEY, Pa. -- Augsburg claimed its NCAA Division III-record 12th national title and first since 2010, snapping a streak of four consecutive national titles by Wartburg. Augsburg and Wartburg have combined to win every Division III national title since 1995.

Augsburg claimed the championship with 100.0 points, its eighth national title scoring 100 or more points. Wartburg finished second with 89.5 points, while Wabash (Ind.) was third with 66.5 points, Wisconsin-Whitewater was fourth with 60.5 points and Delaware Valley was fifth with 58.5 points.

Augsburg swept the awards presented by the National Wrestling Coaches Association. Head coach Jim Moulsoff was named Division III National Coach of the Year and Division III Rookie Coach of the Year, while Tony Valek was named Assistant Coach of the Year. Augsburg 125-pound back-to-back national champion Mike Fuenffinger was named the tournament's Outstanding Wrestler, and 165-pounder Eric Hensel earned the tournament's Most Falls in Least Time award.

"As the season went on, we took our lumps, I know that, but it didn't make a difference," Moulsoff said. "We learned along the way and we grew, because [the wrestlers knew] they're going to crown a national champ come March, and that was their goal, and that's what they did. That's what we did."

Augsburg's lead in the tournament came down to bonus points, which teams receive for recording major decisions, technical falls and pins. Augsburg received 24 bonus points in the team standings (seven pins, two technical falls, seven major decisions), while Wartburg recorded seven bonus points (two pins, four major decisions).


125: In a rematch of the 2014 final he also won, No. 1 Mike Fuenffinger (34-1) set the tone in the first three minutes with two takedowns and a near fall en route to a 15-2 major decision against No. 2 Lucas Malmberg (40-3) of Messiah. Overall, the two-time national champion and three-time All-American (7th in 2013) finished with five takedowns, two near falls and 4:02 of riding time.

133: His coach predicted after the semifinals that No. 5 Matthew Grossmann (35-6) could become a four-time national champion. The rookie from Wilkes took the first step by staving off unseeded Chad Bartschenfeld (30-12) of Augsburg 4-3. The fifth seed overcame an early takedown, evened the score on two escapes and took the lead for good on a leg trip with 20 ticks left in period two to become the first Colonels' champion in 41 years.

"It's an awesome feeling to get Wilkes back here," Grossmann said.

141: With :03 left in sudden victory 2, No. 5 Cary Palmer (35-1) of Hunter scored a takedown to thwart No. 2 Drew Van Anrooy (25-3) of Luther by a 4-2 count. Van Anrooy had forced overtime after an escape with 12 seconds left in regulation, then stayed alive with another escape with :09 left in the tiebreaker --11 seconds after his third caution gave Palmer a 2-1 lead.

"It feels amazing. Mission accomplished," said Palmer, who defeated three of the top-four seeds to become Hunter's second national titlist and first since 2007.

149: No. 4 seed Kenneth Martin (30-3) of Wartburg scored two early takedowns and kept his No. 3 Vincent Fava (26-3) of Delaware Valley at bay en route to an 8-3 victory.

157: A pair of first-period takedowns gave No. 1 Nick Carr (27-0) of Washington and Jefferson all the cushion he needed en route to a 6-2 decision against No. 2 Reece Lefever (22-2) of Wabash. Carr was the runner-up at 165 last year, while Lefever concluded his career as a three-time All-American with his best-ever finish.

165: After facing a big deficit in his first-rout bout before rallying, No. 2 Farai Sewera of Coe (29-2) dominating all seven minutes en route to a 9-4 triumph against No. 4 Tyler Schneider (23-6) of Wisconsin-LaCrosse.

174: No. 1 Conner Lefever (20-1) became the first of two Wabash champions from the Lefever family, notching a takedown with :28 left and riding out No. 3 Zach Zotollo (22-2) of TCNJ for a 5-4 victory.

184: No. 1 Riley Lefever (20-0) repeated in this bracket with a 5-3 triumph against No. 7 Devin Peterson (16-4) of Wartburg. Like his older brother minutes earlier, Lefever rallied with an escape and takedown in the final 45 seconds before tacking on an additional point for 1:20 of riding time.

197: A takedown 32 seconds into sudden victory 1 gave No. 4 Joe Giaramita (32-1) of SUNY Cortland a 6-4 victory against No. 2 Shane Seifert (6-2) of Wisconsin-Whitewater.

285: An escape point was all Augsburg's Donny Longendyke (32-0) needed to stave off No. 8 Terrance Jean-Jaques (34-2) of Rhode Island College. The victory by Longendyke, a transfer from Division I Nebraska, finalized Augsburg's first team title since 2010.

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