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McPhersonSentinel - McPherson, KS
  • Swedes’ Crank finishes sixth at NAIA tourney

  • Sophomore Colby Crank finished sixth at 157 pounds at the NAIA Wrestling National Championships, held March 1-2 in Des Moines, Iowa.
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  • Sophomore Colby Crank finished sixth at 157 pounds at the NAIA Wrestling National Championships, held March 1-2 in Des Moines, Iowa.
    Four Bethany wrestlers made the trip for the 56th Annual national championships to compete against the best in the country.
    Joining Crank were Colt Rogers and Courtney Strauss, themselves returning national qualifiers, while Aaron Garcia received his first national appearance.
    Crank dominated in the early rounds winning by decision over Embry Riddle’s Joshua Chang and Dakota Wesleyan University’s Kyle Gerlach  in the first two championship rounds.
    In the quarterfinal of the championship bracket, Crank fell to Joe Cozart out of Lindsey Wilson by a 3-2 decision.
    Crank moved to the consolation bracket where he defeated the University of Great Falls’ Ryan Leonard and Southern Oregon’s Dalton Urrutia.
    Cambellsville University’s Conor Young took down the Swede in the consolation semi-final which moved Crank to the fifth place match. Crank was narrowly edged out in a 2-3 decision by Edward Cheff of MSU-Northern.
    By finishing sixth, Crank has been awarded All-American honors for the second year in a row. Crank enjoyed the chance to compete nationally but believed that there is still room to improve.
    "I was thankful for the opportunity to compete in the National Tournament again,” Crank said. “All the support from the team and back in Lindsborg meant a lot, but I know none of us left with what we came for and we will come back better for it."
    Elsewhere, Rogers competed at 133 for the second year. Rogers received a bye in the first championship round and lost by a major decision to Tyler Alsip of Campbellsville University in the second.
    Rogers went to the consolation bracket and received a bye in the second consolation round. In the third round, he lost to Alec Chanthapatheth from Hastings College.
    Strauss, a sophomore, wrestled in the 149 pound bracket. He received a bye in the first championship round but was defeated in the second by Mike Vassar  of the University of Great Falls by a major decision.
    In the second consolation round, Strauss pinned Cody Green of Midland University at the 3:52 mark.
    In the third consolation round, Cambellsville University’s Shawn McGhee took down Strauss with a 10-6 decision.
    Garcia wrestled in his first national tournament in the 133 pound weight class.
    He received a bye in the first championship round but lost to Missouri Baptist’s Chris Padilla in the second championship round.
    He went to the consolation bracket where he received a bye in round two, defeated Richard Rios of Dakota Wesleyan University by a 12-8 in round three and was outwrestled by Jacob McCombs from Lindsey Wilson in round four.
    Page 2 of 2 - Head Coach Jacob Marrs takes this capstone event as a positive segue to the next wrestling season.
    "We are pleased for the guys who earned the opportunity to compete at the National Tournament,” Marrs said. “Our program is excited to build on our second year as we now begin preparation for our third.”
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