DICKINSON, N.D. – Five Blue Hawks will be taking the mat for the NAIA National Championship March 2-3. Mat Edward Hruby, Gresh Jones, Jamie Mullins, Cody Johnson, Casey Jones will all be grappling for the Blue Hawk team.
Hruby, a freshman at 125 pounds, has made noise in his first year as a Blue Hawk. The Vacaville, Calif. native won the home Tyler Plummer Invitational and qualified for Nationals through the tough Heart of America (HoA) Conference tournament. Hruby finished the regular season ranked 18th in the country. Hruby has been given a bye in the first round of the tournament.
Gresh Jones, wrestling at 133 pounds, will have his second opportunity at Nationals for the Blue Hawks. The sophomore from Sidney, Mont. reached Nationals his freshman year, tallying a 1-2 record. Jones has an opportunity to better his performance this year. As the 5th ranked wrestler nationally jones took down some of the top talent in the HoA tournament on his way to the title. Jones will be wrestling Randy McCray of Allen University in the first round.
Mullins will be wrestling in the 141-pound weight class for the Blue Hawks. Mullins of St. Ignatius, Mont. is making his first appearance at the National Championship level. Mullins finished third in the HoA qualifier, where he faced two of the nation's top wrestlers in the weight class. Mullins received a bye in the first round of the tournament.
Johnson is returning to the National championship for the second time. Johnson competed in the 2016 Championship, finishing with a 0-2 record. After taking a redshirt year in 2017 Johnson is returning to the National stage. The redshirt-sophomore from Sidney, Montana finished fourth in the HoA qualifier. Johnson will be up against Jack Murphy of York College in the opening round.
Casey Jones, a sophomore from Clovis, Calif., will be in the heavyweight bracket at Nationals. Jones finished the year ranked 13th in the nation. Jones finished third in the HoA qualifier and looks ahead to a good opportunity at Nationals. Jones will be wrestling Justin Harbison or Providence in the first round.
Live video and tracking will be available on Track Wrestling and the final rounds will be on ESPN 3. Full brackets can be found HERE.