Twins Bart and Ben Orth, who attended Lakeside High School in Nine Mile Falls, helped Central Washington complete one of its best wrestling seasons in history at the NAIA national championships last weekend in Primm, Nev.
Bart, a junior, finished second at 167 pounds. Ben, a sophomore in eligibility (he redshirted one year), was sixth at 150. They were two of the record seven Wildcats to earn All-America honors.
As a team, Central finished fifth.
The Orths haven’t limited their success to the mat. Both have 3.89 grade-point averages, the best of any of the 13 wrestlers named to the NAIA Academic All-America team. Bart majors in business education, Ben in biology education.
Bart, who missed most of the season after undergoing knee surgery, won four matches at nationals before losing to Dennis Herren of Simon Fraser 6-4 in the championship match.
Zac Taylor of Sandpoint qualified last weekend for the NCAA Division I championships, but three others with local ties, Kole Clauson of Wisconsin, Burt Beamer of Northern Iowa and Dusty Roberts of Oregon, failed to qualify.
The 167-pound Taylor (29-8), who had split regular-season matches with Clauson, handled the Rathdrum, Idaho, native 12-3 in the quarterfinals of the Big Ten meet. The top six in each weight qualified for nationals. Taylor placed sixth, losing to Will Hill of Michigan State 5-4 in the match for fifth. Taylor was seeded fourth going into the tourney.
Clauson (17-7), seeded fifth, was eliminated in a first-round consolation match, losing to eventual fourth-place finisher Jeff Catrabone of Michigan by pin at 2:39.
Beamer (15-17), a junior from Post Falls, finished fifth at the East Regional in Atlanta.
Roberts (15-12), a sophomore from University High, finished sixth at the Pac-10 tournament in Los Angeles. The top four advanced to nationals Thursday-Saturday in Cleveland.
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