NAPERVILLE, Ill. – Three Olivet College wrestlers won their respective weight class, as the Comets placed second at the 56th Annual North Central (Ill.) College Invitational held today at the Merner Fieldhouse in Naperville, Illinois. Winning individual titles were junior Cole Hersch at 157 pounds, junior Trevor Piggott at 197 pounds and sophomore Dominick Wilson at 285 pounds.
- The Comets had at least one wrestler finish in the top six in each of the 10 weight classes. Overall, 14 wrestlers placed in the top six. Olivet, ranked No. 25 in the most recent No. 25 National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA) poll, totaled 139.5 points, which was eight more than third-place North Central.
- Augsburg (Minn.) University, ranked No. 3 in the NWCA poll, had five individual champions to capture the team title with 158.5 points.
1. Augsburg, Minn., 158.5; 2. OLIVET, 139.5; 3. North Central, Ill., 131.5; 4. Concordia-Moorhead, Minn., 77.0; 5. Harper, Ill., 52.5; 6. Westminster, Mo., 43.5; 7. Augustana, Ill., 31.5; 8. MacMurray, Ill., 22.0; 9. Fontbonne, Mo., 10.0; 10. Lakeland, Wis., 9.0.
- Hersch and freshman Zach Wells faced off in the championship match of the 157-pound bracket. Hersch shutout Wells, 8-0. Hersch reached the championship bout after pinning his first two opponents and posting a technical fall in the semifinals. Wells also had two pins to go along with an 11-2 major decision.
- Piggott won the 197-pound title with a 3-0. He pinned his first opponent and had a 7-3 decision in the semifinals. In the championship bout, Piggott scored an escape point with 28 seconds left and used the riding time point to beat Ben Bergen from North Central, 7-5.
- Wilson and sophomore Owen Miller squared off in the 285-pound championship match. Wilson pinned Miller in the first period. Wilson had a pin in his first match before winning back-to-back minor decisions to advance to the championship match. Miller won 8-0 in his first match, and followed that with two straight minor decisions.
- With a 3-1 record, sophomore Reese Wallis finished third at 141 pounds. All four of his matches were decisions. In the third-place match against Adam Mickelson from Augsburg, Wallis' riding time point was the difference in a 3-2 decision.
- Senior Drew Mandell placed third with a 3-1 record at 149 pounds. Two of his wins were pins, including at 4:15 over Brady Gross from Augsburg in the third-place match.
- Finishing in fourth-place were senior Garret Cleveland at 125 pounds and freshman Kyle Schaaf at 133 pounds.
- Placing fifth were junior Andrew Castaneda at 141 pounds and junior Adam Hall finished fifth at 174 pounds.
- A trio of wrestlers – junior Cameron Mahlich at 133 pounds, senior Frank Mercurio at 165 pounds and senior Kamyab Kamali at 184 pounds – were sixth. In the first round, Kamali broke the 184-pound quickest pin school record with a 13-second fall against Will Harper from Westminster.
"As a team, we had a very good performance today," said Olivet head coach Brandon Brissette. "We were able to out-score No. 10 ranked North Central in their gym because every weight contributed points by having a guy place in the top six. It can be tough to compete right after a holiday weekend and with exams this week, but our guys stayed in it mentally all day. I was most happy with how the guys on the backside of the bracket fought to place and score points."
- The Comets compete at the Kalahari Duals next Saturday, December 14, in Sandusky, Ohio. Action gets started at 9 a.m.