The youthful University of Indianapolis wrestling team competed this past weekend on Saturday, Nov. 22, in the Lindenwood Open, where three individuals from UIndy placed.
The trio who placed in the open included freshman Tyler Scott, who took third in the 197-pound weight class, freshman Brian Wagner, who, also at 197, placed fifth, and sophomore Shelden Struble, who finished sixth at 174 lbs.
The Greyhounds opened their season the week before at the Trine Invitational on Saturday, Nov. 15, where they had several competitors place among the competition. The Greyhounds finished with five individuals who took runner-up positions, and two who placed fourth in their respective weight classes.
During the invitational, redshirt freshman Nick Crume took second at 133 lbs., after being pinned in the final match of the bracket. Freshman Angelo Robles finished second at 141 lbs., finishing with a 3-1 record, with his only loss taking place in the final. Struble started the invitational with a first round bye and ended his night at second place in the 174-pound bracket. Redshirt sophomore Brian Snyder also finished second in the 285-pound bracket with a 3-1 record in the event.
Redshirt sophomore Mason Meling, at 141 lbs., and Wagner, at 197 lbs., both finished fourth in their respective weight classes.
According to Head Wrestling Coach Jason Warthan, the Greyhounds were off to a slower start in getting this season underway. He said that while most schools had begun competing already, UIndy opted to take extra time to put together the best roster possible for the team.
UIndy is returning from a statistically impressive season last year, when it finished eighth at the NCAA Division II National Championships, with four All-Americans. After winning the NCAA Super Regional 2 for the first time in school history last season, the Greyhounds return this season ranked just outside the top-20 preseason poll.
According to Warthan, UIndy has a group of wrestlers with a great amount of potential this season. However, he said a lot of those individuals lack varsity experience, with only three starters returning. With that in mind, Warthan said he is looking for new leaders to step forward.
Redshirt junior siblings Justin and Josh Kiefer are two of the returning starters to this year’s squad. Justin, however, has red-shirted due to an injury, but still remains a vocal leader on the team.
“I just want to help Coach [Warthan] and instruct the freshmen on what they should do to be successful at this sport,” Kiefer said.
Warthan said that he is confident Josh, on the other hand, will have a good season.
“I think he [Josh Kiefer] has a really good shot at winning a national title,” Warthan said.
The Greyhounds will compete next on Saturday, Dec. 6, at Little State. The event in North Manchester, Ind., is set to begin at 10 a.m.