Buena Vista senior 184-pounder Brian Broll (Chaska, Minn./Waconia) was the lone Beaver wrestler to advance into Saturday evenings placing round, and he took home runner-up honors at the Central Regional Championships after being edged 5-4 in the championship match by seventh seed Jayden DeVilbiss of Luther College. This year’s event was hosted by Loras College at the Five Flags Center.
Broll, who was the top-seed in the tournament, and ranked second nationally, earned a first round bye before posting a 6-1 decision in the quarterfinals against eighth-seed Conor Winel of Loras College. He then secured his spot in both the championship match and also the national tournament after squeaking out a thrilling 2-1 sudden victory over fourth-seed Logan Einerson in the semifinals.
DeVilbiss, who was later named the Most Outstanding Wrestler, made his way into the championship match after upsetting second-seed Sam Upah (Wartburg) in the quarterfinals and third-seed Ryan Sheldon of Coe in the semifinals.
Broll, who heads into the NCAA Championships at 16-2 overall this season, becomes the program’s first four-time national qualifier since Jestin Hulegaard did so from 2005-08.
BVU began the day with wins in three of its six first round matches. Junior 125-pounder Branden Schultz (Lake Crystal, Minn./Lake Crystal) stormed out of the gate and chalked up a pin in 1:54. Freshman Cameron Mennenoh (Audubon, Iowa/Audubon) followed up at 133 pounds, earning a 15-2 major decision, while sophomore Seth Shatto (Estherville, Iowa/ELC) also recorded an 11-0 major decision.
Schultz and Mennenoh, however, had to go up against the top-seed in the second round with Shatto facing the second seed. All three would fall in those matches and moved into the consolation bracket.
Steve Gutschenritter (Pacific Junction, Iowa/Glenwood) nearly made it four wins for BVU in the opening round, but he was edged 4-3 by Simpson’s Jeff Sand. Gutschenritter received a bye in the first consolation round, but then was defeated 8-0 in the second round of wrestlebacks.
Fellow sophomore Dustin Shinkle (Van Horne, Iowa/Benton Community) (149 pounds) had nearly the same outcome, falling by a single point (3-2) in his opening round match before falling 13-6 in the second round of consolation matches.
Jared Bronaugh (New Market, Ala./Buckhorn) (197lbs) and Gable Bonner (Estherville, Iowa/ELC) (HWT) also fell in each of their first two matches on the day to finish their seasons.
Schultz, Mennenoh and Shatto each advanced into the third round of consolation matches with a shot of getting into the placing round. Schultz had his bid come up a little short as he was edged 5-1 to close out his year with Mennenoh and Shatto losing by technical fall and major decision, respectively.
As a team, the Beavers tallied 24 points on the day and took ninth place among the 11 teams. Schultz, Gutschenritter and Shatto each posted career-highs in victories this season.
Broll will now look to earn All-American honors for the first time in his career when the NCAA Championships get underway on March 15-16 in Cedar Rapids.
Check out photos of our student-athletes in action in the Beaver sports photo galleries.