In the first dual of the 2015-16 season, the University of Indianapolis split the day 1-1 as they took on Lindenwood University and Olivet College on Saturday, Dec. 12.
The Hounds fell to Lindenwood University 22-19. Redshirt senior Josh Kieffer earned a win at 125 for the Greyhounds defeating his opponent 3-0. Redshirt freshman Kyle Keller followed with a win at 133. Keller had a pin at 3:22 to take the Greyhounds to a 9-0 lead over the Tigers. Redshirt sophomore Neal Molloy, redshirt junior Taylor DeLong and redshirt freshman Dylan Faulkenberg also earned wins for the Greyhounds, but losses in 157, 165 and an injury default left the Hounds down and out. The final team score was 22-19 in Lindenwood’s favor.
UIndy’s first dual win of the season came against Olivet. Kieffer started it off for the Hounds with a win at 125. The Greyhounds fell at 133 and 141, but Molloy brought the Hounds back in it with a pin at 3:43 to tie the team score at 9-9.
Earning his first win as a Greyhound was redshirt freshman Heath Lange who pinned his opponent in 48 seconds. Senior Clayton Monebrake reached a 7-5 win for the Hounds making the team score 18-9. Freshman Jordan Collins took a 13-7 win at 184, and sophomore Brian Wagner won 6-2 at 197. Faulkenberg closed out the dual with a pin in 46 seconds for a 30-15 team win.
The Greyhounds hosted the 56th annual Little State competition on Dec. 6 where UIndy supplied four champions.
Head Wrestling Coach Jason Warthan had mixed feelings about the team’s performance, despite the quartet of champions.
“Honestly, I think we let a couple [of] matches go,” Warthan said. “I think there were some winnable matches that didn’t go our way. I don’t think it was necessarily lack of effort, but there are a lot of things we can still work on.”
Despite the complications, Warthan said that he was impressed with many of the wrestlers’ performances, including redshirt sophomore Nick Crume, who wrestled up a weight class at 141 lbs., rather than his usual class of 133 lbs. where he is an All-American.
“That [the 141 lb. weight class] was a really tough field [at Little State],” Warthan said. “That’s a real quality win.”
Crume won all four matches on his way to the tournament championship. He won by a pin in the first round and closed out the day with a 9-3 decision. Crume, despite the win, was not thrilled with the quality of his own performance. He said his last two matches were not the quality wrestling he wanted. However, he was pleased with his defensive performance on the day.
“The thing I took away from the day was [that] I had a reversal scored on me,” Crume said. “But I didn’t have any offensive points scored [against me], which is a plus.”
Also winning their weight class was Molloy, Wagner and Faulkenberg. Molloy sealed the deal at 149, winning two of his three victories by a technical fall. Wagner picked up two victories to take the victory at 197 lbs. Faulkenberg represented the Hounds in the 285 lb. weight class. His finals match was decided by a major decision.
Warthan emphasized that the open tournaments, such as Little State, do not necessarily compare to the other events later in the season, where the team scores will be kept.
“Typically, first semester you don’t have meaningful duals, but we have one with Lindenwood [University] … then Olivet [College at the Greyhound Duals],” Warthan said.
Prior to the Greyhound Duals on Saturday, Warthan compared Little State, and individual event, to the Greyhound Duals and the 37th annual Midwest Classic
“It [Little State] kind of snowballs into two really tough events [Greyhound Duals and Midwest Classic] the next two weekends. It is more meaningful to have a good team performance at that kind of event [with team scoring].”
One thing Warthan has on his mind this season is what wrestlers are going to be wrestling in what weight class.
“We basically returned the entire team from last year,” Warthan said. “The goals are certainly higher than they were last year. We’ve got to figure out what our best line up is. We have two All-Americans in one weight class [Crume and redshirt senior Justin Kieffer, both at 141 lbs].”
The Greyhounds will host the 37th annual Midwest Classic on Dec. 19-20. It is set to begin at 10 a.m.