KEARNEY, Neb. – The Simpson wrestling team picked up a pair of dual wins on Saturday, going 2-2 at the Midwest Duals hosted by Nebraska-Kearney.
The Storm (3-7 overall) closed the day on a high note with wins over Doane (39-12) and Hastings (30-21). Simpson had two tough draws to start the day, losing to the second-ranked team in Division III, UW-Whitewater (44-6) and falling to Northeast Oklahoma A&M (51-6).
"We had a really good showing across the board today," head coach Nate Hansen said. "Our nine pins show we have some firepower and can win dual meets. If everyone stays consistent through the next month and a half, we'll finish our Iowa Conference schedule strong and see improvement against the toughest conference in the nation."
Jacob Mize was the brightest spot for the Storm on Saturday. The 157-pounder went 3-1 with three pins, getting Simpson's only win against UW-Whitewater. Brett Roberts went 2-1 at 174, and Taylor Witzel (184) and Colby Vlieger (285) each went 2-2.
In the Doane dual, Simpson registered five pins – including four in a row from 133 to 157 – en-route to the runaway win. Sam Reichenbacker (133) pinned Derrick Hoffman in 2:23, Jeff Sand (141) pinned Jon Larsen in 1:21, Derek Entz (149) pinned Ray Feigenbutz in 4:37 and Mize pinned Taylor Hancock in 1:17 to give Simpson a 24-6 lead through give matches. Roberts had Simpson's other pin, while Witzel, Bevins and Vlieger all earned decisions.
Simpson was spotted 12 forfeit points against Hastings and went 4-4 in contested matches. Mize needed just 58 seconds to pin Cameron Mettenbrink to give Simpson an 18-12 lead at the halfway point. After Spencer Ward suffered a 5-3 setback at 165, Roberts pinned Tim Rice to make it 24-15. Witzel grinded out a 3-1 decision over Joel Hernandez to give Simpson a 27-15 lead, but Grant Harril kept Hastings in contention with a pin over Jared Bevins at 197. Vlieger was able to seal the deal, though, beating Pedro Garcia 7-2 at 285.
Simpson returns to conference action when it goes to Storm Lake to face Buena Vista on Tuesday, Jan. 21. Start time is set for 7 p.m.