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McKiernan, Ruffin Qualify for NCAA Championships

Colton McKiernan
Colton McKiernan

Final MAC Brackets

NORFOLK, Va. – SIUE freshmen Colton McKiernan and Justin Ruffin have earned automatic bids to the NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships set for March 21-23 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

"They both wrestled well," said SIUE Head Coach Jeremy Spates. "I think they came out here wanting to win the tournament, but they did a good job of battling through."

McKiernan advanced to the finals with two straight wins Friday. Matt Stencel, of Central Michigan, stopped McKiernan's run with a 12-7 victory in the championship match. Four heavyweights from the MAC will earn spots to the NCAA Championships, including McKiernan.

In a crowded and talented field at 157 pounds, Ruffin worked his way back from a first-round loss to place fourth. The top five at 157 pounds earned automatic bids. Ruffin bested Buffalo's Austin Smythe in a 13-2 major decision in the consolation bracket. He dropped a 9-4 decision to Central Michigan's Logan Parks in the third-place match.

As a team, SIUE finished seventh with 68.5 points. Missouri won the team title with 180 points.

The Cougars also picked up two other wrestlers on the podium – Tyshawn Williams placing sixth at 149 pounds, Nate Higgins taking fourth at 165 pounds and Christian Dulaney finishing sixth at 197 pounds.

TEAM RESULTS
Missouri 180
Buffalo 113.5
Central Michigan 112.5
Old Dominion 111
Ohio 99.5
Northern Illinois 98
SIUE 68.5
Kent State 66

COMPLETE SIUE RESULTS
2019 MAC Championships Results
125
Gage Datlovsky
Quarterfinal - Michael McGee (Old Dominion) won by tech fall over Gage Datlovsky (SIUE) (TF 18-0)
Cons. Round 1 - Kyle Akins (Buffalo) won by major decision over Gage Datlovsky (SIUE) (Maj 15-2)
7th Place Match - Jacob Ferri (Kent State) won by major decision over Gage Datlovsky (SIUE) (Maj 19-7)

133
Austin Macias
Quarterfinal - John Erneste (Missouri) won by fall over Austin Macias (SIUE) (Fall 0:57)
Cons. Round 1 - Alijah Jeffery (Northern Illinois) won by fall over Austin Macias (SIUE) (Fall 1:36)
7th Place Match - Trevon Majette (Old Dominion) won by major decision over Austin Macias (SIUE) (Maj 14-2)

141
Lucas Bernal
Quarterfinal - Jaydin Eierman (Missouri) won by tech fall over Lucas Bernal (SIUE) (TF 19-3)
Cons. Round 1 - Andrew Marten (Central Michigan) won by tech fall over Lucas Bernal (SIUE) (TF 16-1)
7th Place Match - Drew West (Northern Illinois) won by fall over Lucas Bernal (SIUE) (Fall 1:23)

149
Tyshawn Williams's place is 6th
Quarterfinal - Tyshawn Williams (SIUE) won by decision over McCoy Kent (Northern Illinois) (Dec 7-4)
Semifinal - Brock Mauller (Missouri) won by decision over Tyshawn Williams (SIUE) (Dec 7-1)
Cons. Semi - Dresden Simon (Central Michigan) won by fall over Tyshawn Williams (SIUE) (Fall 4:24)
5th Place Match - McCoy Kent (Northern Illinois) won by decision over Tyshawn Williams (SIUE) (Dec 2-1)

157
Justin Ruffin's place is 4th
Quarterfinal - Logan Parks (Central Michigan) won by decision over Justin Ruffin (SIUE) (Dec 8-1)
Cons. Round 1 - Justin Ruffin (SIUE) won by decision over Richard Jackson (Kent State) (Dec 6-0)
Cons. Semi - Justin Ruffin (SIUE) won by major decision over Alex Smythe (Buffalo) (Maj 13-2)
3rd Place Match - Logan Parks (Central Michigan) won by decision over Justin Ruffin (SIUE) (Dec 9-4)

165
Nate Higgins's place is 4th
Quarterfinal - Nate Higgins (SIUE) won in sudden victory - 1 over Kenny Moore (Northern Illinois) (SV-1 7-5)
Semifinal - Troy Keller (Buffalo) won by decision over Nate Higgins (SIUE) (Dec 5-2)
Cons. Semi - Nate Higgins (SIUE) won by decision over Isaac Bast (Kent State) (Dec 5-4)
3rd Place Match - Connor Flynn (Missouri) won by major decision over Nate Higgins (SIUE) (Maj 15-2)

174
Kevin Gschwendtner
Quarterfinal - Brit Wilson (Northern Illinois) won by decision over Kevin Gschwendtner (SIUE) (Dec 6-1)
Cons. Round 1 - Jake Lanning (Buffalo) won by major decision over Kevin Gschwendtner (SIUE) (Maj 8-0)
7th Place Match - Kade Byland (Kent State) won by decision over Kevin Gschwendtner (SIUE) (Dec 7-5)

184
Sergio Villalobos
Quarterfinal - Andrew McNally (Kent State) won by fall over Sergio Villalobos (SIUE) (Fall 1:54)
Cons. Round 1 - Hunter Yeargan (Ohio) won in tie breaker - 1 over Sergio Villalobos (SIUE) (TB-1 2-1)
7th Place Match - Sergio Villalobos (SIUE) won by decision over Logan Rill (Buffalo) (Dec 4-1)

197
Christian Dulaney's place is 6th
Quarterfinal - Christian Dulaney (SIUE) won by major decision over Shane Mast (Kent State) (Maj 16-4)
Semifinal - Brett Perry (Buffalo) won by decision over Christian Dulaney (SIUE) (Dec 8-3)
Cons. Semi - Max Ihry (Northern Illinois) won by decision over Christian Dulaney (SIUE) (Dec 5-4)
5th Place Match - Derek Hillman (Ohio) won by fall over Christian Dulaney (SIUE) (Fall 7:42)

285
Colton McKiernan's place is 2nd
Quarterfinal - Colton McKiernan (SIUE) won by decision over Jake Gunning (Buffalo) (Dec 5-3)
Semifinal - Colton McKiernan (SIUE) won by fall over Zach Elam (Missouri) (Fall 7:30)
1st Place Match - Matt Stencel (Central Michigan) won by decision over Colton McKiernan (SIUE) (Dec 12-7)

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