Aquinas closes regular season with win at Boone
No. 5 Aquinas wrestling soared to a first place finish in the Boone Central Invite beating Omaha Westside out by 26.5 points on Jan. 26.
The Monarchs had two wrestlers win gold - Cameron Schrad at 126 and No.1 Joseph Reimers at 182. It’s the sixth tournament title of the season and makes it two in a row after a win at the Centennial Conference championship on Jan. 19.
Aquinas has taken part in eight tournaments this season, winning at Wood River, North Bend, Wahoo, Friend, the Centennial tournament in Fremont and most recently in Albion.
The Monarchs were also second at their home meet to Broken Bow on Jan. 5 and second to Lakeview at the Schuyler Invite on Jan. 12.
Their only other weekend competition was at the Wood River Holiday Invite where they were second in a dual format.
Omaha Westside took second, 26.5 points behind Aquinas while Pierce was third and Elkhorn Valley fourth. Westside had eight medalists and went 1-1 in title matches.
Fifteen total teams were in attendance.
“We had a great day on Saturday,” coach Roy Emory said in comments sent to The Banner-Press. “At the Aquinas Invite and the Schuyler Invite, we had some big matches in the quarterfinals that we relaxed or tightened up and didn’t finish. We have been working on putting ourselves in those situations in practice and mentally being prepared for close matches.”
Schrad, who improved to 33-9, won by second-period pin in the quarterfinals, and a decision in the semifinals.
The championship match went to a tiebreaker, but Schrad won 5-4 over Clay Church of High Plains.
It was the sophomore’s third title of the season to go with championships at North Bend and Wahoo. He also appeared in the title match in Friend but came up just short.
Reimers was up 30-15 in the second period when he pinned his opponent in the quarterfinals. He then won by second-period technical fall in the semifinals.
In the championship match, he defeated Brock Schaecher of Elkhorn Valley 19-13 to improve to 36-0 on the season. In a rare occurrence, Reimers was taken down twice during the match, but scored eight takedowns of his own, a reversal and an escape to climb to the top of yet another medal stand.
Reimers is now 36-0 and has won six tournament titles.
Christopher Nickolite won silver at 132, as did Tad Naiberk at 220.
Naiberk’s only loss was to No.1 (Class C) Jon Merten of Boone Central. It was Naiberk’s third finals match of the season to go with a win at home and a loss at Wood River.
Nickolite had two decision victories before losing in the championship match. It was his first title match of the season.
No. 6 (Class C) Noah Scott at 120 and Nolan Schultz at 195 both received bronze medals.
Ben Kment placed fourth at 170, Hunter Stutzman was fifth at 113, and Class C No. 6 Hunter Vandenberg, Creighton Redler (138), Logan Helgoth (145) and Owen Schramm (285) were all sixth.
Aquinas now prepares for the dual state competition on Saturday in Kearney where they will face off against heated rival David City Public in the first round.
“Being mentally prepared for close matches is what it’s going to take for us to make the next step,” Emory said. “I thought we did a great job of that (at Boone Central/Newman Grove), and we won a lot of those tough matches.
Peter Huguenin is a sports reporter for The Banner-Press. Reach him via email at DVDsports@lee.net