Written by Mason Ippel, Sports Information Student Asisstant
Adrian, Mich. - The Alma College wrestling team competed at the NCAA Division lll Regional Central tournament at Adrian College. The top three finishers in each weight class qualify for the NCAA Dlll National Tournament. Zachary Cooper (Chippewa Hills, Mich. / Whitehall) and Brendan Ladd (Ortonville, Mich. / Brandon) both qualified for the National Tournament. Cooper placed second in the 149 weight class and Ladd placed third in the 141 weight class. Chase Beecher (Clio, Mich. / Clio) placed fifth in the 125 weight class.
How It Happened
Cooper - 149
- Cooper had to wrestle in a preliminary round versus a wrestler from Heidelberg. He defeated his opponent quickly by way of pinfall in 1:02.
- He continued his quick victories with another pin over a wrestler from Ohio Northern, this time in 1:00.
- In the quarterfinals, Cooper dominated his way to a win by technical fall, 17-0 in 3:47, over a wrestler from Wabash.
- The total time of his first three matches equaled 5:49, not even the length of a full match.
- The semifinals was the first time he went the full time. He defeated a wrestler from John Carroll by decision, 8-7, in a very close and intense match. Winner of the match punched their ticket to nationals.
- He had to medically forfeit the championship match.
Ladd - 141
- Ladd started his day out with a strong win by technical fall, 16-0, against a wrestler from Defiance.
- His next match against a wrestler from Baldwin Wallace was a little closer. He won by decision, 5-0, to advance to the semifinals.
- Ladd suffered just his third loss of the year by decision, 7-2. It was win-or-go-home from this point on.
- To advance to the third place match, he came out with some intensity and dominated his opponent on his way to a win by technical fall, 18-3.
- It came down to a match against a wrestler from Ohio Northern. The winner would advance to the National Tournament. Ladd won handily, 11-3, to clinch his birth to nationals.
Beecher - 125
- Beecher started regionals with a pin by pinfall in 3:52.
- He suffered a heartbreaker in the next round as he lost just 2-0.
- He would bounce back with a 6-1 win over a wrestler from Manchester
- To advance to the consolation semifinals, Beecher out-wrestled his Heidelberg opponent, 9-6.
- Beecher lost to a wrestler who took down the #1 ranked wrestler in the nation which put him in the fifth place match.
- It was as close as it gets in the fifth place match as Beecher won by decision, 2-1.
Cooper and Ladd will head to Cedar Springs, Iowa on Friday and Saturday (Mar. 13 and 14) for the Dlll NCAA National Tournament. Last year, Cooper finished fifth on the national stage while Ladd placed seventh.