UW-Eau Claire goes 3-0 at Lakeland Duals | Nate Woelfel
UW-Eau Claire goes 3-0 at Lakeland Duals
By Nate Woelfel | Wisconsin Wrestling Online
SHEBOYGAN – The UW-Eau Claire wrestling team cruised to a 3-0 record at the Lakeland College Duals on Saturday.
The Blugolds (4-3) topped St. John’s (Minn.) 30-9 in the day’s first dual. They went on to top host Lakeland 45-3 before finishing the day with a 38-12 win over MSOE.
“It was a good step forward for us. When wrestling teams in our regional, all the matches matter” Blugolds head coach Tim Fader said. “I thought we took a good step forward here in our first competition of 2016.”
Zackary Sirny (125 pounds), Nathaniel Behnke (141), Roy Munroe (149) and Jeremy Amundson (184) each posted 3-0 records for UWEC.
Amundson recorded three first-period pins for Eau Claire, with the fastest being a 36-second fall against Devon McCune of MSOE.
“That was exciting. Those were bonus points,” Fader said. “A couple of the times, they were rolling around and he ended up on top and ended the match. He’s becoming more and more dangerous.”
Behnke’s first win of the day was likely his biggest. He scored a 13-4 major decision over Ben Henle of St, John’s. Henle was the one who kept Behnke from advancing to the national tournament a year ago.
Moving forward, Fader would like to see his relatively young team learn to stick their strategies throughout the entire match.
“Sometimes, when you talk about game plans and what you’re going to do when you get out there, you have to stick to it,” Fader said. “You don’t get the game plan going and then scrap it halfway through the match because you’re falling into old habits.”
On top of the loss to UWEC, Lakeland (1-9) fell to the University of Chicago 40-13 and the University of Dubuque 39-6.
“Tough teams,” Lakeland head coach Dillon Bera said. “It’s not like we wrestled nobodies. There were tough guys. We won matches. Our studs stepped up and they wrestled hard.”
The Muskies were only able to fill six of the 10 weight classes for each of the three duals. The 24-0 deficit to start each match made the going tough for the host squad.
“We have some guys who are out of the lineup right now hurt, sick, whatever it is,” Bera said. “It kind of brings the atmosphere down a little bit, but we’ll get back up.”
Mitchell Fucile (165) was the lone wrestler to record a perfect record for the Muskies. He won all three of his matches by decision.
MSOE (0-4) was led by Austin Bellile (285) who won all three of his matches in his return to the lineup, including a 10-2 major decision over Colin Fisher of St. John’s.
“It was just nice to get our heavyweight back,” MSOE head coach Matt Zwaschka said. “He hasn’t wrestled in just shy of two years and for him to come back and win three matches today, it was good for him but it was nice for our program to get him back. It gave us a little shot in the arm”
Outside of their loss to the Blugolds, the Raiders dropped contests against St. John’s (40-7) and Dubuque (38-8).
“We have work to do still. We haven’t been on the mat for almost a month and I think you can kind of see some of that,” Zwaschka said. “I think, throughout the day, our fight got better with our guys.
“That’s one thing we’ve really been stressing with our guys. Not just having effort, but fighting for every position, fighting for every score and fighting even when you’re giving up scores. I thought that got better throughout the day.”
UW-Eau Claire (3-0)
University of Dubuque (3-0)
St. John’s (Minn.) (2-1)
Chicago 40, Lakeland 13
Dubuque 38, MSOE 8
UW-Eau Claire 30, St. John’s 9
UW-Eau Claire 39, Lakeland 9
Dubuque 25, Chicago 17
St. John’s 40, MSOE 7
Dubuque 39, Lakeland 6
UW-Eau Claire 38, MSOE 12
St. John’s 33, Chicago 20
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