GCU Sends Four Wrestlers to NCAA Championships
The GCU wrestling team qualified four of its members for nationals from the NCAA Division II Super Regional Four/Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Championships on the campus of Adams State College in Alamosa, Colo.
The Antelopes finished fifth as a team. The top four finishers in each weight class advanced to the NCAA Division II Championships on March 12 in Omaha, Neb.
Junior Todd Wilcox, ranked No. 6 nationally and No. 2 in the RMAC at 133 pounds, made the final against Naveed Bagheri of San Francisco State. Entering the final, Wilcox had a 38-2 season record, while Bagheri, ranked No. 3 nationally, was 21-2. Bagheri defeated Wilcox, 1-0, to win the title.
Redshirt sophomore Victor Carazo, ranked No. 6 nationally and No. 1 in the RMAC at 165 pounds, advanced to the final against Taylor May of Nebraska-Kearney. Entering the final, Carazo was 35-4, while May was 19-7. Carazo defeated May, 3-1, to claim his first RMAC championship.
Senior Stephen Towne, ranked No. 4 in the RMAC, finished in third place at 157 pounds. He lost a 12-2 major decision to Joey Deaguero of Adams State in the semifinal, but came back to defeat Brian Easterling of Chadron State, 12-8, and Kyle Francis of Western State, 9-1 (major decision), to claim a trip to the national meet. Towne now is 33-7.
Senior Daniel Garay, ranked No. 5 in the RMAC at 174 pounds, defeated wrestlers from New Mexico Highlands and San Francisco State before losing a 16-1 technical decision to Kamarudeen Usman of Nebraska-Kearney in the semifinal. Garay, now 17-14, then lost to Zach Frazier of Western State.
Junior Ryan Becerra, ranked No. 5 in the RMAC at 184 pounds, lost by fall at 1:52 to Derek Ross of Nebraska-Kearney. He came back strong, though, defeating Chance Rencountre of Fort Hays State, 3-2, before losing a 4-3 decision to Ross for third place. Becerra is now 20-7.
Becerra, Carazo, Wilcox and Towne all advance to the nationals in Omaha.
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