ALLEN, TEX. – Penn State Mont Alto‘s wrestling team wrapped up competition for the 2019-20 season at the NCWA National Championships late last week in Allen, Texas. PSUMA sent a total of eight wrestlers to the national championships. The team finished 21st out of 82 institutions around the country.
Conner Herron (Frederick, Md./Tuscarora) and Mason Blank (Lancaster, Pa. Lampeter-Strasburg) both competed at 133 pounds and had top-12 finishes. Herron won his first three matches of the national championships, which included a pin over Cody Armstrong in the round of 16. He dropped his following two consolation matches. Highlights for Blank included a 7-5 and 4-2 decision wins. He dropped his second consolation match by a narrow 4-3 score to Grand Valley State University’s Trevor Dusty.
PSUMA’s First All-American
At 141 pounds, Jack Coulston (Carlisle, Pa./Boiling Springs) became the first All-American in program history at that weight class, finishing the national championships with four wins. Coulston earned a huge 17-1 tech-fall win over Brian Gembarski and a 2-0 victory over Ethan Boren. He then earned All-American status with a 14-3 major decision over the University of Florida’s Nicholas Vugman. He was unable to finish the last day and had to default out of the tournament.
Sophomore Bryce Palamar (Smithsburg, Md./Williamsport) finished 2-2 at 149 pounds, while John Halbremdt (Gettysburg, Pa./Gettysburg Area) got his first taste of nationals pinning Ottawa University’s Dylan Landre in 2:14. Halbrendt lost his next two matches.
Ron Schilpp (Severna Park, Md./Severna Park) also made his debut at nationals and had a solid outing at 165 pounds. The freshman also went 2-2 and won in his round of 32-consolation bracket over Alex Fogarty from Maine Maritime Academy. Nick Kostyak (Carlisle, Pa./Boiling Springs) was just as impressive finishing 12th with a 4-2 record. He pinned Jacob Fernandez in 2:55 to earn 12th place in his respective bracket.
The final PSUMA wrestler who competed at the National Championships was Eric Wilson (Carlisle, Pa./Boiling Springs). He won his first match over Kyle Gossard by a narrow 5-4 decision before dropping his next two bouts.
Frank Maira is assistant director of athletics at Penn State Mont Alto