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Kriss, Budke head to nationals for Tigers

By The Hays Daily News

CHADRON, Neb. — Two Fort Hays State University wrestlers are headed to the NCAA Division II national tournament March 8 in Birmingham, Ala.

Tanner Kriss (197 pounds) and Travis Budke (174) finished third in their respective weight classes Saturday in the Super Regional 4 Tournament in Chadron, Neb.

The Tigers had eight wrestlers alive after Day 1, but Kriss and Budke were the only ones in the top four. Fort Hays did have three wrestlers finish fifth that were unable to challenge for a qualifying spot because of losses earlier in the bracket.

Kriss, a Colby native ranked No. 5 in the nation, won two matches to claim third place. He defeated Chadron State's Chris Leak 16-4, then New Mexico Highlands' Justin Rockhill via pin in 1 minutes, 7 seconds in the third-place match.

Budke, a TMP-Marian graduate, defeated Colorado Mesa's Zak Slotten, 3-2 in OT, then defeated CSU-Pueblo's Ray Hall for third.

Also making it to the second day were Rory Wilkinson (6th at 133), C.J. Napier (6th at 141), Noah Killip (5th at 149), Derek Koehn (5th at 157), Sam Thoman (5th at 165), and Zack Grimes (6th at 184).