Viking grapplers place 15th at Nationals

By Scott Beasley/Delta Staff Writer

The Missouri Valley College men’s wrestling team sent 12 athletes to Wichita, Kan. to compete in the NAIA national championships, taking 15th place overall with three team members earning All American honors with Top 10 individual finishes.

Josh Isaac, a sophomore, worked hard all season and went in prepared to give it his all to be an all American for Missouri Valley College.

“It was just like another year, another day in the room, another day in the office,” he said. “Just gotta go in there and get it done. Know the things we train for all year. Time to show our work and if its paid off.”

Coach Mike Machholz noted that due to the Covid-19 pandemic not everything has been ordinary, adding that it’s been difficult this season to prepare for championships due to Covid-19 protocols.

“This year has been so difficult with Covid and all the other restrictions and things along those lines, so while we are getting ready to have a national championships that’s awesome, but to be very truthful I think everybody is tired, you know, mentally strained, as far as all the hoops and things we have to do just to have our sport,” he said. “On top of that we are the very first sport for championships for the NAIA this year, so the NAIA is really looking at our championships to see whether or not or how it works out to see if they can have basketball and football and all those things coming later in the semesters. So going into the championship, as far as quality, we have to feel pretty good, but other than that the rest of it is a year that we certainly don’t want to have to go through again because it certainly was stressful and taxing on athletes, students and teachers – everybody.”

In addition to the 15th place finish for the team, Joshua Isaac, Hayden Wempen and Elias Vaoifi were named All Americans for Missouri valley College. Isaac placed fifth, Wempen placed ninth and Vaoifi placed sixth. With the addition of these three, Missouri Valley has produced 167 All-Americans.

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