Two other Baker wrestlers would come within two matches of gaining All-American status. Freshman Joe Pace (174, Platte City, Mo.) and Jacob Nowak (197, Overland Park, Kan.) were eliminated in the consolation rounds. Pace would earn a rematch against Missouri Valley senior Preston McKinney, the 2009 NAIA national runner-up who had defeated Pace in the finals of the Wildcat Open earlier this season. Pace defeated McKinney 10-3 at the NAIA tournament.
Nowak won a double-overtime thriller over returning All-American Ike Okenwa from Missouri Baptist University. Nowak was eliminated 2-1 in the next round by David Dill from California Baptist University.
Overall, the Wildcat wrestling program gained valuable experience at this year’s national championships. With a very young team, the Baker wrestlers will harness this experience and build on it, looking forward to the 2011 NAIA National Championships in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.View the full results here.