SPRINGFIELD, Ill. - The 11th-ranked Iowa Central wrestling program saw its bid for a sixth straight NJCAA Cliff Keen National Duals title fall short on Sunday.
Luke Moffitt's short-handed Tritons finished third with a 2-1 record on the day. Iowa Central earned a 30-18 victory over No. 14 Neosho (Kan.) in its opener before dropping a 36-9 semifinal decision to sixth-ranked Colby (Kan.).
In their third-place match, the Tritons rebounded with a 27-17 triumph over No. 4 Niagara (N.Y.).
"We had a couple of unexpected issues going in and weren't at full-strength," Moffitt said. "We had two open weights, so giving up 12 points right off the bat obviously doesn't do us any favors in a dual tournament format.
"With that being said, we did pretty well. We earned some bonus points and guys picked up the slack where we needed it. I didn't really know what to expect coming into this weekend, so I?was pleasantly surprised with the performance of the guys who were on the mat. If anything, it proves how much we need to have everyone on the same page and how much potential is there if we do."
Tristan Bundy (125) and Devin Geoghegan (157) both collected three wins for Iowa Central, while Kenan Jackson (174), Brandon Bradney (197) and Chris Ballard (285) all prevailed twice. Bundy, Bradney and Ballard each managed two falls.
1. Labette, 3-0; 2. Colby, 2-1; 3. Iowa Central, 2-1; 4. Niagara, 2-1; 5. Harper, 2-1; 6. Lincoln, 1-2; 7. Iowa Lakes, 1-2; 8. Neosho, 0-3.
Iowa Central 30, Neosho 18
125 - Tristan Bundy, ICCC won by forfeit; 133 - Le'Roy Barnes, N won by forfeit; 141 - Javon Haines, N won by forfeit; 149 - Terrence Moore, N dec. Raymond Welch, 9-5; 157 - Devin Geoghegan, ICCC dec. Trent Robb, 10-3; 165 - Dillon Geoghegan, ICCC pinned Austin Ogden, 2:29; 174 - Kenan Jackson, ICCC dec. Blaine Hill, 3-2; 184 - Chad Wampler, N dec. Michael Licht, 5-2; 197 - Brandon Bradney, ICCC pinned Christian Duckens, 2:57; 285 - Chris Ballard, ICCC pinned Adam Wakefiel, 0:46.
Colby 36, Iowa Central 9
125 - Bundy, ICCC pinned Damion Walls Jr, 4:48; 133 - Josh Martinez, C won by forfeit; 141 - Elijah Cook, C won by forfeit; 149 - Konnor Kriss, C dec. Welch, 9-2; 157 - De. Geoghegan, ICCC dec. Drake Lovvorn, 7-2; 165 - Bryce Lewis, C dec. Di. Geoghegan, 4-2; 174 - James Jones, C dec. Jackson, 5-2; 184 - Dylon Braun, C tech. fall Licht, 15-0; 197 - Cash Drylie, C major dec. Bradney, 20-11; 285 - Xavier Fisher, C pinned Ballard, 4:38.
Iowa Central 27, Niagara 17
125 - Bundy, ICCC pinned Barney Prince, 3:25; 133 - Brian Galuski, N won by forfeit; 141 - Lance Compton, N won by forfeit; 149 - Kevin Strong, N dec. Welch, 8-6; 157 - De. Geoghegan, ICCC dec. Irvin Buck, 9-2; 165 - Kris Schimek, N dec. Di. Geoghegan, 7-0; 174 - Jackson, IC dec. John Brabon, 10-3; 184 - Joseph Stanton, ICCC dec. Dustin Moss, 8-5; 197 - Bradney, ICCC pinned Gunner Thomas, 0:22; 285 - Ballard, ICCC pinned Max Antone, 2:19.
Second-ranked Labette (Kan.) took home top honors with a perfect 3-0 mark, while Colby settled for a runner-up showing at 2-1. No. 17 Iowa Lakes checked in seventh with a 1-2 showing.
"This can be a momentum-builder for us heading down the stretch of the season," Moffitt said. "We had a good group effort against Niagra. That was a solid win."
Next action for the Tritons is Saturday at regional duals in Mason City.