On Tuesday, January 30th, Hannibal-LaGrange University Wrestling Team hosted its senior night and their last home dual of the season. The tri-dual was between the HLGU Trojans, Calument College of St. Joseph, and Graceland University. The dual between Calument ended with a 36-6 win for the Trojans followed by a loss to Graceland with the score ending with 24-25.
The Trojans wrestled the two wrestlers that Calumet brought to begin the dual. Calumet brought their 197 and 285 weight classes to compete. Nigel Burnett and Drew McCollum both lost their matches with close decisions; starting the senior night off on the wrong foot. After the Trojans wrestled Calumet, Graceland and Calumet had their dual. Graceland had every weight class except one, so they ended with a win against the two wrestlers Calumet brought.
Before the dual between the Trojans and Graceland could begin, Coach Scott Hawes, honored five seniors for their dedication and commitment to the Trojans. The five seniors were: Joshua Nidever, Nigel Burnett, Caleb McElfresh, Joshua Culp, and Jeremiah Reed. During the senior night events, they were each able to share a little about themselves with the Trojans fan base.
The Trojans then faced Graceland, starting off with a rough start of 0-21. A positive to this bumpy start was the match between Caleb McElfresh (133) and his opponent. The opponent he faced is ranked seventh in NAIA, and McElfresh wrestled hard and only lost by decision 4-2. Gage Maxwell (157) stunned the crowd with a quick 45 second pin against Brandon Seward. Jeremiah Reed received a forfeit at 174. The Trojans were able to inch closer the closing the score gap leading into 184 weight class. Austin Hawes earned the Trojans three points with a win over Jonathan Juarez with the decision of 12-5. Nigel Burnett (285) rounded out the night with an exciting match and an eventual win of 7-3.
- Alia Calhoun / February 2018 / HLGU Vanguard