BACK-TO-BACK: Rider wins second straight, Garcia wins 125-pound title

Adams State University’s Josiah Rider (149) won his second consecutive national championship, and Brendon Garcia (125) also won at the NCAA Division II Tournament Saturday in Cedar Rapids, Iowa (courtesy photo ASU sports information).

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa – A last second shot led to an individual championship for the Adams State University Grizzlies on Saturday night at the Alliant Energy PowerHouse Arena in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. The Grizzlies emerged with two individual titles.

The first match saw No. 2 seeded Brendon Garcia lock up with No. 5 seeded Jaxson Rohman Augustana (S.D.). Garcia took a shot with 45 seconds showing and could not break the ice to open the match. With just over a minute left, both teams battled and went for a shot but again, neither team got the upper hand.  Neither grappler was able to score in the first period.

Garcia made a clean escape after just ten seconds in the second period for the 1-0 advantage. Rohman than worked his way to a take down and rode it for 19 seconds before Garcia earned an escape for a 2-2 tie after two.

The third period saw Rohman choose the neutral position and it looked like the match would be destined for overtime but Garcia stunned Rohman with a shot and a takedown with seven seconds left to get the 4-2 win.

Garcia is the 39th national wrestling champion in Adams State history.

Taking the mat for the championship were two RMAC rivals who had seen each other four times before in Josiah Rider of Adams State and Jason Hanenberg of Western Colorado. Entering Saturday’s match, Rider had won all four previous match ups by a combined score of 25-7.

On Saturday, Rider, who won the 157-pound title last season, was the No. 2 seed while Hanenberg, who has qualified for nationals three times, was the No. 5 seed.

Neither wrestler was able to score in the opening period. With Hanenberg selecting the down position, Rider did the best he could to force Hanenberg to work for the break out. Rider than reversed an escape attempt with a cradle before earning a fall in 3:46.

Rider is the first two-time champion for the Grizzlies since Scott Ritzen won the 126-pound championships in 1980 & 1982. He is the first to win two titles in consecutive years since Herbert Stanley won the heavyweight titles in 1978 & 1979.

As a team the Grizzlies scored 58.5 points.