Buena Vista Wrestling takes away Positives from their Season Opening Loss to #13 Loras 


Allie Hartman

Tanner Frost, Sports Editor

The Buena Vista Wrestling team began their 2018-2019 campaign this past Saturday, Nov. 3, hosting the #13 ranked Loras Duhawks in a dual in Siebens Fieldhouse. After a long and hard-fought night, the visiting Duhawks overpowered the Beavers 32-6. 

However, the final score line doesn’t tell the whole story. 

Beginning the night at the 125-pound weight class, Buena Vista freshman Byron Fleming made his collegiate debut against Loras’ Matt Randone. However, Randone controlled the match from the start and ended up tech falling Fleming in the third period, 19-3. 

From there on, the Duhawks set the tone with a few minor decisions going their way.  

Nate Vento and Collin Stilson fought hard for the Beavers at 133 and 141 respectively, but both wrestlers lost by a five-point decision to their opponents. 

Buena Vista’s Jack Kyle went back-and-forth with Brock Parker was locked at 3-3. However, an escape coming before the end of the second period plus a point for riding time saw Parker take the lead. Kyle escaped from the bottom in the third period to pull within one but was unable to finish the job as Parker won the match 5-3. 

Brad Kerkoff, last year’s standout performer for the Beavers, finally put BV on the board with a minor decision. Trailing most of the match, a third period escape and takedown found the BVU senior claimed the 60th victory of his career in thrilling fashion. 

Loras bounced back immediately with a yet another one-point win when Samuel Schuler for the Duhawks defeated Shane Vaughn, 7-6. 

At 184, senior Dylan Huntoon, performing for the Beaver Wrestling team for the first time since his freshman year, won Buena Vista’s second match of the night. Taking on Javier Soto for Loras, Huntoon began his first match back red hot, recording three takedowns in the first period which would prove crucial. 

An open weight at 197 for BVU awarded the Duhawks a free six points, and Don Phillips II for the Beavers would finish the night at the heavyweight spot against Brody Tupy of the Duhawks. 

Tupy claimed the first point of the match with an escape in the second period and followed it up with a takedown coming off of an attempted single leg by Phillips II. The Beaver wrestler won a pair of escapes, but it wasn’t enough in the end as Loras won the final match of the night, 3-2. 

Final score: 32-6 in favor of Loras. The Duhawks would improve to 1-0 while Buena Vista would fall to 0-1. 

Despite the loss, the team’s goals are still clearly defined by first-year Head Coach Mark Rial. 

“Our goal is to get better every day and create a championship lifestyle. We really want to focus [on] being champions in life and not just one area. We expect to be competitive in the top half of the conference and have some guys wrestling in the national championships competing for all American status,” says Rial. 

Buena Vista also wrestled this past weekend in the Dakota Wesleyan Open, earning top spots in a few weight classes. Shane Vaughn placed second at 165, and Dylan Huntoon did the same at 184. 

The Beavers are back in action this Friday, traveling to St. John’s in Minnesota. That dual will begin at 7:00.