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Wrestlers Place Fourth At WIAC Championships
Posted: Sunday, February 18, 2007
LA CROSSE - The UW-Eau Claire wrestling team advanced two wrestlers to the finals and scored 89.5 points to place fourth at the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC) Championships held here today at Mitchell Hall.
The fourth-place finish was the highest by a Blugold squad since finishing fourth in 2004 and the most points scored by an Eau Claire team since tallying 94 points a the 2003 WIAC Championships. UW-La Crosse won its 10th straight WIAC Championship scoring 152.5 points followed by UW-Stevens Point with 114.5 points and UW-Whitewater placing third with 96 points. La Crosse has seven individual champions out of 10 weight classes and scored 150-plus points for the second-consecutive year.
Andy Miller (So.-Appleton/North) entered competition seeded second at 133 pounds. After defeating Chris Stratton of UW-Oshkosh by pin at 1:36 Miller punched his ticket to the finals by defeating third-seeded Jeff Gale of UW-Platteville 9-2. In the finals Miller was defeated by top-seeded Jordan Kolinski of UW-La Crosse 13-3 to finish second in his weight class. Miller went 2-1 on the day and improved his season record to 26-12.
Lance Valiquette (Sr.-Auburn, WA) joined Miller advancing to the championship match of his weight class doing do at 165 pounds. Seeded third, Valiquette defeated Sam Laes of Lawrence 10-2 and second-seeded Joshua Ison of UW-Stevens Point 7-4 to advance to the finals where he would meet top-seeded and Tim Palmer of UW-La Crosse. Valiquette lost to Palmer, who is ranked second nationally at 165 pounds, by an 18-7 score. Valiquette won two of three matches on the day and improved his season record to 29-11.
Dave Vanevenhoven (Sr.-Appleton/Kaukauna) entered his final WIAC Championship competition seeded third at 149 pounds. Receiving a first round bye Vanevenhoven faced second-seeded Jake Larsen of UW-La Crosse suffering a tightly-contested 2-1 setback. Larsen is currently ranked fifth nationally at 149 pounds. In the wrestleback Vanevehoven pinned Tony Norton of Lawrence at 4:53 and defeated Fred Lane of UW-Stevens Point 9-2 to earn third place at 149 pounds. Vanevenhoven went 2-1 on the day and is now 19-12 for the season.
Fellow senior Justin McAuly (Sr.-Clintonville) was also entering his last WIAC Championship entering the day as the third seed at 285 pounds. McAuly won his first match defeating Mitchell Szwet of UW-Stevens Point 12-2 before losing to second-seeded Derrick Johnson of UW-Whitewater 6-2 in a semifinal match. In the wrestleback McAuly pinned Kenny Hamm of Lawrence at 5:52 to advance to the third place match to face fourth-seeded Ryan Rozek of UW-Platteville. McAuly scored two points in the first sudden victory session to defeat Rozek 7-5 and to earn third place in thrilling action. McAuly went 3-1 on the day and now sports an overall record of 24-13.
Andrew Johnston (Fr.-St. Cloud, MN/Tech) entered the day unseeded at 141 pounds and was pitted against second-seeded Mike Rohowetz of UW-La Crosse who pinned Johnston at 4:23. Johnston won his first match of the day in the wrestleback defeating Kyle Mueller of UW-Stevens Point 12-4 to earn his chance to win third place where he would face a familiar foe in Rohowetz. Rohowetz again got the best of Johnston winning the match 17-4. Johnston went 1-2 to finish in fourth place and improved his season record to 20-14.
Four Blugolds competed in and won the fifth-place matches in their respective weight classes. Patrick Senzig (So.-Lyndon Station/Mauston) defeated Matt Schuck of UW-Whitewater at 157 pounds 3-0. Joey Miller (Jr.-Lake Tomahawk/Lakeland Union) defeated fourth-seeded John Budi of Lawrence by forfeit at 174 pounds. Nick Hoeft (Jr.-Merrill) beat Joe Austin of Lawrence 2-1 at 184 pounds and Josh Holforty (So.-Bloomington, MN/Kennedy) defeated Jack Peters of Lawrence 8-3.
All individual champions automatically qualify for the NCAA Division III Championships to be held March 2-3 in Dubuque, Iowa. Wild card entrees for the