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Saturday, Apr. 30, 2016

Lady Vikings have six all-Americans

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Valley junior Danielle Curliss (top) won five of seven bouts Saturday for fourth place in the WCWA National Championships.
(Chris Allen/Democrat-News)
BRISTOL, Tenn. -- Six members of the Missouri Valley College women's wrestling team captured medals Saturday to earn all-American status in the WCWA College Nationals at Bristol, Tenn.

The sixth-ranked Lady Vikings finished in sixth place with 21 points. The top three spots corresponded with the latest rankings, with No. 1 Oklahoma City (141 points) taking the title ahead of King (91) and Simon Fraser, B.C. (77).

There were varying degrees of difficulty in reaching the medal rounds, as evidenced by Valley's two fourth-place finishers. Junior Danielle Curliss had to win four of six rounds to get to the third-place match at 136 pounds, where she was pinned by top-ranked Oklahoma City senior Tessa Plane, while taking two of three bouts got senior Summer Sistad to the same round at 123 pounds -- losing a 4-0, 4-4 decision to No. 7 senior Laura Wilson of Simon Fraser.

Junior Francis Elfiong (143 pounds) picked up a win in the consolation semifinals, then dropped two matches to place sixth. Junior Jordan Hagerman (155) won three of five contests, including a pin in the seventh-place match.

Two Lady Vikings wound up in eighth place, both winning two of five matches: junior Paloma Basulto (191) and freshman Jessica Ulloa-Martinez (170).

Also picking up wins for Valley were freshman Sonia Smith (109), sophomore Samantha Lovelace (116) and sophomore Brittany Jones (170).

Curliss received a scholar-athlete award, while the MVC squad received a team scholar honor for a cumulative grade-point average of at least 3.0.

The Lady Vikings are competing this week in the Dave Schultz International Open at Colorado Springs.

Men's Wrestling

The seventh-ranked Valley men's wrestling team won two dual matches over the past week.

The Vikings split six bouts during a 31-17 victory at Maryville, No. 17 in the NCAA Division II poll, on Thursday, Jan. 26.

A big win was posted for Valley at 125 pounds, senior all-American Paul Hansen -- ranked 11th in the NAIA -- ripped through No. 3 sophomore Terrel McKinney for a 14-2 major decision.

The Vikings also got a 5-3 win at 133 from freshman Willie Essex and 8-0 major by freshman heavyweight Dan Mueller. The Saints (0-1) gave up a net of 12 points on defaults.

Valley knocked off host William Penn (Iowa), 17th in the NAIA rankings, 32-10 on Tuesday, winning seven times. Hansen, sophomore Brian Bitney (133) and No. 7 sophomore Josh Manu (184) all won by fall.

Senior Damon Jackson (174) and sophomore Carl Lawrence (285) posted major decisions, while second-ranked sophomore Gian Travarso (157) and freshman Nico Martinez (165) also won.

In a battle between the top two grapplers at 149, No. 1 sophomore Eric Burgey of the Statesmen (2-6) notched an 8-3 victory over second-ranked senior Shay Shive.

The Vikings (7-3) will host the MVC Open on Sunday.

Track and Field

ELSAH, Ill. -- The Valley track and field team had two athletes win Heart of America Conference honors for their performances Saturday in the Principia Relays at Elsah, Ill.

Sophomore Tyler Davis of University City got the men's weekly award for winning the long jump with a leap of 7.06 meters, qualifying him for the NAIA Indoor Championships.

Freshman Billi Pipes of Salado, Texas, was the league's top woman with a win in the 300-meter hurdles (44.32 seconds), third place in the 60-meter dash (8.17) and leg in the Lady Vikings' second-place sprint medley relay (4:30.26).

Getting wins for the Valley men were sophomore Keith O'Neal in the 60 (7.18) and junior Matt Leonard in the mile (4:34.15), while second-place showings were turned in by senior Will Coleman in the shot put (13.82 meters) and the 1,600- (3:40.81) and 3,200-meter (8:51.60) relay teams.

Senior Sara Stafford won the shot put (12.17) for the Lady Vikings, who also got a silver medal from sophomore Amanda Buhr in the 3,000 (12:00.90) and third place by freshman Sarah Niemeier in the 500 (1:26.51).

Next up for Valley is the Mule Relays, Friday and Saturday at the University of Central Missouri.

Men's Volleyball

The ninth-ranked MVC men's volleyball team bounced back from its first loss of the season with a pair of home wins.

The Vikings swept Lindenwood-Belleville (Ill.) in a non-conference contest Saturday, 36-34, 25-16, 25-9. Freshman Caio De Souza had 12 kills and sophomore Peterson Silva added 10 for Valley, which posted a strong .448 attack percentage against the Lynx (1-3).

On Tuesday, the Vikings also took only three sets during a 25-19, 25-21, 25-17 MAMVIC West victory over Hannibal-LaGrange. Silva and De Souza again led the offense, splitting 19 kills, with sophomore Will McCracken setting 25 of the team's 36 spikes and dropping in a pair of aces on the Trojans (1-5, 0-2 MAMVIC).

Valley (6-1, 1-1) will head to St. Charles this weekend for the Lindenwood Tournament.

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