NAPERVILLE -- The Millikin wrestling team finished in second place at the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin (CCIW) Wrestling Championships held at North Central College Thursday.
North Central won the team title with 123.5 points followed by the Big Blue at 114.5. Elmhurst College was third with 100 points.
Millikin freshman Bradan Birt was the CCIW champion at 149 pounds. Birt opened the tournament with a 16-0 technical fall win and then won his semifinal match to Matt Sears of Augustana by major decision 19-6.
He won the championship match in thrilling fashion. Birt trailed Ben Williamson of North Central 8-6 in the closing seconds. Birt scored a four point near fall to pull out the victory as time expired. Birt's point for ride time made it an 11-8 final.
Millikin junior Chris Williams finished in second place at 141 pounds to earn All-Conference honors. Williams won in the first round by fall and then took his semifinal match by major decision 11-3. Williams lost the championship match to Jimmy McAuliffe of Elmhurst 8-2.
Big Blue junior Keajion Jennings was second at 184 pounds. Jennings opened the tournament with a win by fall and then won 18-10. Jennings lost the championship match to Christos Giatras of Augustana 8-5.
Three other Millikin wrestlers earned All-Conference honors with a third place finish in their weight class. Senior Blake Tisza went 3-1 at 165 and won the third place match 2-1 in a tiebreaker over Paul Ladd of Lakeland. Freshman Isaiah Herrera was third at 197. Herrera went 3-1 including a 6-2 win over Timothy Blicke of Wheaton in the third place match. Hamilton was third at 285 going 3-1 and winning his final match 3-2 over Max Gierke of Wheaton.
Millikin opened the tournament strong winning nine of the 10 opening matches. The Big Blue got a bye in the first round of the 125 pound weight class opening round.