In this week’s WCWA update, we look back at the 2018 NWCA National Duals, highlight some impressive performances you might have missed, and recap the rubber match between King and Emmanuel that went down on Tuesday.
Campbellsville Claims Women’s Title in Wild 2018 NWCA Multi-Divisional National Duals
The women’s division of the 2018 NWCA Multi-Divisional National Duals was nothing short of spectacular and saw a new champion crowned for the first time in five years. As we predicted, the Campbellsville Lady Tigers and McKendree Bearcats cruised their way to the finals setting up a clash between the number two and three ranked WCWA teams in the country. Campbellsville defeated University of the Cumberlands and Emmanuel College (who pulled the surprising upset over King University early) on their way to the finals while McKendree dominated Eastern Oregon and Wayland Baptist by a combined score of 86-5. Both squads fielded lineups with a lot of depth and plenty of star power. The championship dual did not disappoint. Campbellsville used a late rally, sweeping the final five weight classes, and some extremely creative lineup maneuvering to capture the 2018 title. After dropping the first five matches of the dual against McKendree, including a surprising pin at 109-pounds when Vanessa Ramirez (MU) stuck second-ranked McKayla Campbell (CU), the Lady Tigers found themselves in an unfamiliar spot having to dig their way out of a deep hole. Head coach Lee Miracle decided to send out Koral Sugiyama at 136-pounds who got the quick fall over Brenda Reyna (MU), the second-ranked wrestler at 123-pounds who was bumping up two weight classes for McKendree. Following that up was another quick fall for Campbellsville, this time when Grace Bullen pinned Junior World bronze medalist Alexis Porter. Bullen, one of the top-ranked wrestlers in the world at the senior level, made her WCWA debut over the weekend to the surprise of many. Another bonus point victory at 155-pounds when Kayla Miracle made quick work of Andrea Sennett via technical fall saw the momentum meter go full tilt towards the Lady Tigers. Two victories on criteria in the final two weight classes sealed the deal and the title for Campbellsville.
1st Place – Campbellsville University
2nd Place – McKendree
3rd Place – Emmanuel College
4th Place – Wayland Baptist
5th Place – King University
6th Place – Life University
7th Place – Oklahoma City University
8th Place – Grays Harbor College
1st Place Match
Campbellsville University defeated McKendree 24-19.
3rd Place Match
Emmanuel College defeated Wayland Baptist 23-21.
5th Place Match
King University defeated Life University 31-15.
7th Place Match
Oklahoma City University defeated Grays Harbor College 26-20.
Five individual performances you may have missed from the event…
1) Life University’s Jennifer Juarez went 4-0 during the course of the tournament with four bonus-point victories. The fourth-ranked wrestler at 116-pounds secured a fall over Briana Kellin (King) and also racked up three victories by technical fall over Alexis Morfin (Grays), Arelys Valles (Cumberlands), and Amber Pair (Eastern Oregon) by combined scores of 32-0.
2) King University’s Allison Pettix went 5-0 on the weekend wrestling at 130 and 136-pounds. In addition to securing two quick falls over Aysia Cortez (Life) and Yulissa Medrano (Missouri Bap), she also claimed three shut-out technical falls over Astrid Silva (Emmanuel), Daniela Flores (OKC), and Caitlyn Kaz (Jamestown) by combined scores of 30-0.
3) Campbellsville University’s Grace Bullen made her long-awaited WCWA debut this weekend in dominating fashion. Wrestling at 130-pounds and 143-pounds, Bullen would pin all three of her opponents she would face including a pin of sixth-ranked Abigail Nette (Emmanuel) and 2016 Junior World bronze medalist Alexis Porter (McKendree). Bullen will be considered an immediate title contender at whatever weight she decides to wrestle at the 2018 WCWA National Championships.
4) Oklahoma City University’s Rachel Watters went 4-0 on the weekend wrestling at 170 and 190-pounds. The second-ranked Watters secured four technical fall victories while outscoring four opponents 38-2. She didn’t yield a single point wrestling at 170-pounds in her three matches against Madisen Bozovich (Eastern Oregon), Keely Sage (King), and Kacie Moorehouse (Grays). She also defeated Courteney Tompkins (Cumberlands) at 190-pounds 15-2.
5) Jamestown’s Sarah Moore looked sharp on the weekend securing three falls in three matches wrestled. After an opening round pin of King University’s Keely Sage in under a minute, Moore then secured two additional falls over the weekend against Yuneris Taveras (Missouri Valley) and Serena Rayon (SWOCC).
King University Edges Emmanuel College in Third Meeting
Less than a week after Emmanuel College upset King University at the 2018 NWCA Multi-Divisional National Duals, the two teams met again on January 9th, 2018, in a rubber match. King and Emmanuel wrestled earlier in the season in a dual that was won handily by King 29-17. However, Emmanuel exacted a little revenge in the quarterfinals of the National Duals, knocking off the fourth-seeded Tornado, 29-15. This time, however, King fought their way to a 22-21 win over sixth-ranked Emmanuel in a wild dual that went back and forth the entire match. It wasn’t decided until the final scrap at 191-pounds. After Regina Doi captured a decision victory for King at 101-pounds, Emmanuel answered back with two consecutive pins to take command of the dual including at 109-pounds when third-ranked Maria Vidales (EC) pinned two-time national champion Marina Doi, the top-ranked wrestler in the nation at 101-pounds. Doi was injured during the action as seen on the live feed, but the action wasn’t stopped until the fall had been called. At 116-pounds, two wrestlers ranked in the top-eight at 109-pounds squared off when two-time WCWA national champion and top-ranked Cody Pfau pinned sixth-ranked Aleeah Gould. King would respond with three straight victories of their own to retake the lead, including a forfeit at 130-pounds that would prove to be crucial. Emmanuel got back on the board at 143-pounds when fourth-ranked Kayla Marano secured a crucial fall over Leilani Vital. However, King immediately answered with a technical fall victory at 155-pounds when Jessi Kee defeated Sadie Tackett, 10-0. After Felicity Bryant put Emmanuel back in the lead after a technical fall victory over Keely Sage at 170-pounds, the dual entered the final bout with the team score 21-18 in favor of Emmanuel. Victoria Espinoza took the mat for King at 191-pounds needing a shutout technical fall in order for King to win the dual, and that is exactly what she delivered over Kayla Wade, 11-0, lifting the Tornado to victory.