The Brock Badgers wrestling teams brought home two more national championships this past weekend in Calgary, bringing the program total up to a staggering 28 national titles across both the men’s and women’s programs.
The men have now won 19 national championships, with this most recent one being their sixth straight. The women brought home their ninth national title, extending their streak of dominance to an incredible eight in a row.
Head coach Marty Calder, the man behind this incredible 25-plus year streak of national dominance, was awarded his 10th National Coach of the Year award in addition to the banners.
For the athletes themselves, the men’s team ran away with the team standings, finishing the weekend with 81 points, followed by Concordia’s 56 and Alberta’s 52. Individually, the Badgers saw Ligrit Sadiku, Christopher McIsaac, Jevon Balfour and Ty Bridgewater all bring home gold in their respective weight classes. Garette Saunders and Richard Deschalates Jr. took home silver, while Clayton Pye, Calvin Daum, Joseph Martin and Cruiz Manning earning bronze.
The women also finished atop the leaderboard in the team standings, although it was much closer than the men; the Badgers ended up with 53 points, followed by Saskatchewan’s 48 and Concordia’s 37. Saskatchewan was actually ahead of Brock at one point but were ultimately unable to hold the lead for long as the Badgers came back to secure first place. Individually, Emily Schaefer, Hannah Taylor and Darrion Sterling all took home gold, Tina McLaren brought back a silver, while Skylar Grote earned bronze in their respective weight classes.
The medals were especially sweet for Schaefer, McLaren and Balfour, who are all capping off impressive varsity careers that saw each of them finish their time at Brock with five national titles in as many years.
The men finished the weekend with five pins in an incredible combined time of 5:51 — for comparison, Alberta finished with the most pins (eight) but did so in over 23 minutes. The Badgers led the country in most tech falls with 24 (14 more than the next-highest total), most combined pins and tech falls with 29 and ran away with the highest match point total with 349 (Concordia was second with 231). The women led the country in most combined pins and tech falls with 15, and had the highest match point total with 169.
The weekend capped off what has become the norm for Brock Badgers wrestling, as this year the Badgers brought home two OUA titles, two national titles and Calder brought home two more Coach of the Year awards (OUA and U Sports). The greatest dynasty in Canadian wrestling history continues and it doesn’t look like it’ll slow down any time soon.