Baumgartner, Holtfreter qualify for NCAA Championship

Baumgartner, Holtfreter qualify for NCAA Championship

MINNEAPOLIS – Mason Baumgartner and Pierce Holtfreter performed well on Saturday and earned a trip to the NCAA Division III Championship in two weeks. Baumgartner won the 197 pound bracket and Holtfreter took third place at 157 pounds.

THE BASICS
Falcons top finishers:
 Mason Baumgartner first at 197 pounds, Pierce Holtfreter third at 157 pounds
CUW team finish: sixth of 11 teams
Location: Si Melby Hall (Minneapolis, Minn.)
Tournament: NCAA Division III West Regional (hosted by Augsburg College)

NATIONAL QUALIFIERS
- Baumgartner (Slinger, Wis.) dominated the 197-pound bracket after winning all four of his matches, including three by fall. He began the day with a win by fall in 25 seconds over Chris Yaros (UW-Oshkosh) prior to pinning Cecil Philson (UW-Eau Claire) 2:15. Baumgartner then won by fall versus Eddie Terres (Lakeland) in 1:55 during the semifinal match. During the championship bout he defeated Logan Hortop (Augsburg) by decision, 7-0.
- It will be Baumgartner's first time he qualified for the NCAA Division III Championship and he improved his season record to 7-3. He missed over half the season recovering from an injured incurred last season.
- Holtfreter (senior, Las Vegas, Nev.) finished 3-1 at 157 pounds and finished in third place. He received a bye in the opening round before winning by decision, 7-0, against Carter Focht (UW-Eau Claire). Holtfreter then lost 4-2 in an exciting double sudden victory bout to Ben Cousins (Concordia-Moorhead). He progressed to the consolation side of the bracket to defeat Sameh Almousa (St. Olaf) by fall in 1:40. Holtfreter took third place after winning by major decision, 11-3, over Joe Pelkey (UW-Oshkosh).
- It will also be Holtfreter's first time he advanced to the NCAA Division III Championship and his season record improves to 13-12.
- The Falcons have now sent at least one wrestler to the NCAA Division III Championship in each of head coach Corey VanGroll's seasons at the helm of the program.

FALCON INDIVIDUAL RESULTS
- Freshman Ben Reagan (Wauwatosa, Wis.) won a pair of bouts at 149 pounds. He defeated TreJon House (MSOE) by major decision, 14-0, and Ian Gioacchini (Lakeland) by major decision, 8-0.
- Junior Mason Mergener (Crivitz, Wis.) won a bout at 174 pounds after earning a 10-8 decision against Robert Tait (St. John's).
- Sophomore Mitchell Slatton (Granger, Ind.) defeated Zavier Gonzalez (Lakeland) by technical fall, 15-0, at 184 pounds.

NEXT ON THE SCHEDULE
- Baumgartner and Holtfreter will compete at the NCAA Division III Championships on Friday and Saturday, March 11-12 in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.