ST. LOUIS – Gabrielle Lord-Klein claimed sixth place to earn All-American honors for the second straight season while leading the Waldorf College women's wrestling team in the Women's Collegiate Wrestling Association (WCWA) National Championships.
Lord-Klein, a 136-pound senior from Stevens Point, Wis., won three of six matches while closing out the two-day tournament on Saturday.
"Gabby came out and battled each match," Waldorf coach Tyreece Gilder said. "She put together solid matches, but unfortunately we had a few positions and situations that didn't go our way."
Starting strong, Lord-Klein won her first three bouts on Friday. She opened with a 10-0 technical fall over Menlo College's Jeanette Naranjo and continued her dominance, taking a 10-0 technical fall from Missouri Baptist University's Lindsay Villarmia.
Lord-Klein, ranked No. 7 in the WCWA poll, secured a 3-2 decision over Simon Fraser University's Francesca Giorgio in the quarterfinals. She lost a 9-4 decision in the semifinals to the University of Jamestown's Shai Mason, who finished as the tournament runner-up.
Lindenwood University-St. Charles' Monica Ramirez edged Lord-Klein in a 5-4 decision in a consolation semifinal. Giorgio avenged an early loss, pinning Lord-Klein in the fifth-place match. Lord-Klein ended the season with a 25-11 record.
"Any hill is a tough one to climb at this level, but I'm absolutely proud of her and her ability to push through the setbacks and wrestle to the very end of each match," Gilder said.
Freshman Maciel Ramirez (109 pounds) posted a 2-2 tournament record for the Warriors.
Maciel Ramirez (4-17) lost a 12-2 technical fall to Southwestern Oregon Community College's Yolonda Laws in the first round. She bounced back, earning an 8-4 decision over Pacific University's Mariah Damaso and then took an 8-2 decision from Hopwood. Lindenwood-St. Charles' Audrey Diaz topped Maciel Ramirez with a 13-0 technical fall in a third-round consolation match.
Competing at nationals for third time, Legate (12-17) opened with a fall over Missouri Valley College's Anissa Abrego. Campbellsville University's Tiaira Scott, the eventual national champion, pinned Legate in the quarterfinals. Life University's Donaldson won by fall over Legate in the consolation bracket.
"Sonya wrestled tough this weekend," Gilder said. "She ran into the No. 1 seed early and wrestled her tough, but gave up a couple big moves. That match gave her confidence moving forward and she wrestled a close match before getting caught and pinned by a girl that beat her soundly earlier in the season."
Coming off a first-round bye, Ramirez-Brambila (6-12) took care of business with a 10-4 decision over McKendree University's Annelis Tapia. She lost a 10-0 technical to Menlo's Kalin Knight-Alvarez in the third round. Menlo's Lauren Richardson won a 10-0 technical fall over Ramirez-Brambila in a consolation bout.
Sanchez (12-12) was pinned by McKendree's Kennon Henderson in the opening round. Ottawa University's Maudie Arronado defeated Sanchez in a 16-6 technical fall. Sanchez ended the tournament, losing a 14-6 technical fall to Missouri Valley's Anna Poyner.
Hopwood (1-4) received an opening-round bye and lost a 10-0 technical fall to Lindenwood-St. Charles' Hannah Padilla before dropping an 8-2 decision to teammate Maciel Ramirez.
McLaughlin (0-4) lost a 10-0 technical fall to University of the Cumberlands' Esmeralda Garcia. Jamestown's Marlie Gillis earned a fall over McLaughlin in a first-round consolation match.
Torres (2-6) earned a first-round bye and was pinned by Missouri Baptist's Cheyenne Youngblood in the second round. Cumberlands' Olivia Cepak won by fall over Torres in a second-round consolation bout.
The national tournament ended the season for Waldorf. The Warriors placed 16th, scoring 25 points in the 21-team tournament.
King University won the national championship with 269 points, Campbellsville claimed runner-up honors with 196 points and Oklahoma City University took third with 195 points.
With six Waldorf freshmen making their national tournament debuts, it helps set the tone for the Warriors as they prepare for next season.
"This experience definitely helps the younger girls in that they had a chance to wrestle against and side by side with the best in the country," Gilder said. "They had a chance to see where they need to work to get to."