PELLA — In its final action before postseason competition begins, the Central College wrestling team hosted the Last Chance Invitational Saturday morning in H.S. Kuyper Fieldhouse.
Intended for freshman and sophomore student-athletes, the Last Chance Invitational included wrestlers from Central, Buena Vista University, Nebraska Wesleyan University, Truman State University (Mo.) and William Penn University.
Central had the top wrestler in five of 11 brackets contested, and had four runner-up wrestlers.
“It’s great to be able to see our younger guys compete and compete well,” coach Eric Van Kley said. “They’ve paid their dues and have been working really hard.”
Isaac Figueroa (freshman, Sterling, Ill.) pinned Darquell Pierre to earn the 133-pound Red bracket crown. Teammate Carlos Posas (freshman, Madera, Calif. South HS) went 2-0 to win the 133-Pound White bracket with a major decision and a technical fall.
“It’s been a busy week for Isaac after wrestling Thursday and today,” Van Kley said. “I thought he finished the week strong.”
In the 197-pound White bracket, Duncan Lee (sophomore, Newton) won all three matches by fall to take first place, besting teammateMichael Escobedo (freshman, Tucson, Ariz.) in the final. It was Kendall Foster (sophomore, Chino Valley, Ariz.) over Noah Gregorovic (freshman, Peoria, Ariz., Liberty HS) by fall in an all-Central final at 149 pounds.
The Dutch also had a 1-2 finish at 174 pounds with Andrew McCracken (sophomore, Des Peres, Mo., Kirkwood HS) in the top spot andJordan Sheldahl (freshman, Yuma, Ariz., Gila Ridge HS) in second. McCracken went 3-0 in the round robin format while Sheldahl was 2-1
Hunter Ruth (freshman, Scranton, Greene County HS) snagged a trio of pins in the 285-pound bracket and only suffered a loss against eventual champion Ashton Mutuwa of Truman State. He defeated teammate Holden Miller (sophomore, Yelm, Wash.) in the third-place match.
“I thought Hunter and Holden both had good days,” Van Kley said.
The NCAA Division III Lower Midwest Regional is slated for February 24-25 in Dubuque and is the qualifying tournament for the NCAA Division III Championships.