Wrestling gears up for MAC Championships

By Zack Thompson

Wrestling is headed to Kent State for the MAC Championships Saturday and Sunday in Kent, Ohio.

The Huskies (7-11, 2-6 MAC) will have two wrestlers ranked in the top three of their respective weight classes.

Redshirt freshman Shawn Scott earned the third seed at 197 and redshirt senior Jared Torrence will be the third seed at 285.

Scott will wrestle Old Dominion’s Kevin Beazley, whom he defeated earlier this season 6-4 by decision. Torrence will face Beazley’s teammate, Matt Tourdot, whom Torrence defeated earlier this season, 5-3, by decision.

Senior Rob Jillard will be the fifth seed at 149, while senior Nick Smith is the sixth seed at 133. Redshirt freshman Shaun’Qae McMurtry and redshirt junior Caleb Busson are seven seeds at 165 and 184, respectively. Nick Harrison, Tyler Argue, Andrew Morse and Matt Mougin will begin the tournament with preliminary round matches.

Head coach Ryan Ludwig said his wrestlers have prepared well and are ready to go heading into the MAC Tournament.

“We’ve prepared well,” Ludwig said. “Our guys have been drilling really sharp and bringing intensity to the room. Our workouts have been shorter and more intense and the guys have brought it every day.”

The Huskies have struggled this season in MAC play, and the MAC Championships will be no easy task for the Huskies. Northern Iowa enters ranked fifth in the country and is the only undefeated team in the nation. Just four spots behind the Panthers is No. 9 Missouri.

Missouri will look to defend its title this weekend after it knocked out powerhouse Central Michigan last season. Before falling to the Tigers last year, Central Michigan had won 11 consecutive MAC Tournament Championships.

Ludwig said the Huskies will have to pay attention to the smaller details if they’re going to be successful.

“We have to keep our focus in short time intense situations,” Ludwig said. “Short time scoring situations are going to be key, and pushing the pace and being able to get to our shot whether we’re down by one with 20 or 30 seconds left in the match or up by one with 20 or 30 seconds left will be huge this weekend.”

Ludwig said the two-week layoff between matches can only help his team.

“We had a couple of guys with nicks and bruises who were able to get healed up, and it’s going to do nothing but help us out,” Ludwig said.