The University of Wisconsin-Whitewater will be represented by eight wrestlers -- the school's largest contingent ever to qualify for a national championship -- at the NCAA III Wrestling Championship at the Cedar Rapids Ice Arena in Cedar Rapids, Iowa March 15-16. The Warhawks captured the team title at the NCAA III Midwest Regional hosted by Elmhurst College in Elmhurst, Illinois Saturday. UW-W coach Tim Fader was named Midwest Region Coach of the Year.
Team scores were: UW-Whitewater 121, Elmhurst College 108, UW-La Crosse 89, UW-Stevens Point 83.5, Olivet College 82.5, Wabash College 64, Trine University 53.5, Alma College 53, Wheaton College 43.5, North Central College 30, University of Chicago 28.5, and Manchester College 5.5.
Wrestlers advance to the national tournament based on their finish at the regional, one of six qualifying regionals. The top three in each weight class advance, which will make a field of 180 wrestlers at the NCAA III championship.
The Warhawks had four weight class champions.
Elroy Perkin (Greenfield/Whitnall) won the 149 pound class. He opened with an 8-0 win over Brady Schrupp of La Crosse, followed with a 12-4 win over Joseph Ruettiger of Chicago, and edged Gage Pederson of Olivet 9-8 in a semifinal. Perkin, the fourth seed, defeated third seed Ben Strobel of Stevens Point 13-7 in the title bout. With four victories in the regional Perkin stands at 35-7.
Cedric Gibson (Plainfield, IL) won all three of matches to capture the 165 pound class. After a first round bye, Gibson topped Josh Sampson of Wabash 10-3, and then won 8-3 over James Myers of Olivet to move into the championship. He beat Jordan Schulte of Stevens Point 3-1 in the final match to raise his record to 14-5.
Shane Siefert (Mundelein, IL/Carmel) had a first round bye at 197. He beat Mario Palmissano of Chicago 14-12 to advance to the semifinals, and then won 6-2 over Dustin Wozniak of Point. In the final match Siefert defeated Darren Faber of Wheaton College 4-2. Siefert upped his season record to 28-8.
Anthony Edgren (New Lisbon/New Lisbon) earned the 285 class title, winning four times, with two pins. Edgren, the number two seed, pinned Abraham Hall of Wabash in 1:23 in the first round, squeaked by Mitchell Steed of Wheaton 1-0 in the second, and beat Adam Robinson of Alma 6-1 in round three. Edgren came through with a pin, in 1:29, of William Mayer of La Crosse in the class title match.
Roland Dunlap (Muskego/Muskego ) had a bye, and then won 10-6 and 3-2 to advance to the championship match at 184 pounds. Dunlap was defeated, 8-3, by Josef Rau of Elmhurst in the title match. It was the first loss of the season for Dunlap, now 11-1.
Three Warhawks placed third. That group included Grant Sutter (Dodgeville/Dodgeville) at 133, Jake Fredrickson at 141, and Cade Sarbacker (Mineral Point) at 157 pounds. Sutter won, then lost, then came back with a pair of wins to up his mark to 21-3 this season. After an opening round win by technical fall, Fredrickson went down to the wire. He won 1-0 in round two, lost 3-2 in the third round, and then bounced back with a 3-1 overtime win over Jordan Kust of Stevens Point for third place. Sarbacker entered the meet with a 9-0 record, but lost his first match in the regional. He rebounded from that loss with four consecutive wins, including a technical fall and a 17-3 superior decision to finish third and up his season mark to 13-1.
UW-W will enter the NCAA III championship as the number four team in the Division III poll.