Des Moines, Iowa – The Menlo Oaks 2012-13 wrestling season came to an exciting conclusion on Saturday evening at the NAIA Wrestling national championships. Eric Lopez headlined the Oaks efforts, finishing second at 165 lbs. Lopez won his semifinal match 7-5 to start the day and become the only Oaks wrestler to enter the championship round. Lopez met Jimmie Schuessler of Grand View in an exciting conclusion to his season. Schuessler and Lopez battled it out and were tied with just 18 seconds left in the match. Schuessler was able to score a point with just under 18 seconds remaining to earn the 4-3 decision and claim the national championship title. Lopez took him second place for his impressive efforts.
Angel Garcia, Scott Brasil, and Lopez all earned All-American status on Saturday. Garcia placed third in the 133 lb division. Garcia lost his semifinal match to eventual national champion Prescott Garner of Southern Oregon University. Following the loss, Garcia won a 4-2 decision to enter the third place match which he won in dominating fashion, earning an 11-3 major decision win to secure his third place finish.
Scott Brasil lost his semifinal round to the eventual champion at 285 lbs, Eric Thompson of Grand View. Brasil then lost two consecutive one-point decisions, 2-1 and 3-2 to take home sixth place in the tournament.
The strong showing at the national championships by the five competing Menlo wrestlers also earned the team a top-ten finish overall. Menlo finished with 41.5 points, good for tenth place out of the 37 teams in the tournament. This concludes yet another successful season for the Menlo Oaks wrestling team who also finished #15 in the final NAIA coaches' poll released on February 20th.