Augustana men’s wrestling is ranked No. 22 in the NWCA poll. Their ’21-’22 wrestling season opened up in Jamestown, North Dakota, on Saturday, Nov. 6, with nine Viking wrestlers taking home first place titles in their weight classes.
Individual workouts took place over the summer off-season. Now during the semester, they hold practices four to five times a week.
“[We focus] on toughness during these workouts, working through mental [and physical] to battle in times when your mind tries to shut you down,” coach Jason Reitmeier said.
Reitmeier wants the men to stay aggressive and positive in every situation of the sport.
Senior Daniel Bishop had an overall record of 2-7, bringing his career record to 55-41. This year he won his 197-pound weight bracket achieving 4-0 at the Jimmie Open. His first three matches were decided by technical fall (18-0, 16-0, 17-0). In his last match, he defeated Minot State by major decision 10-3, earning his team 17 points.
“It was a great feeling to start the season off on such a strong note,” Bishop said. “However, just like every competition, there are things I need to work on in the upcoming weeks. Every day is an opportunity to learn and get better. This weekend was no exception.”
With 38 players on the team, Reitmeier explained how their fall schedule is going to be the toughest in Division II and how it can benefit them for the spring semester.
“I feel we can battle for a conference title, and I believe we have a top 10 team in the nation,” Reitmeier said. “This team is built for tough times and a tough season.”
The team will be competing against North Dakota State University at the Sanford Pentagon in December. NDSU is a member of Division I wrestling and a part of the Big 12 conference. This match can open up possibilities for the team and the school to extend further in the division and a possible conference.
The Augustana wrestling team will travel to Mitchell for the DWU Open this Saturday at 9 a.m.