Nelson has coached 35 All-Americans
By Kevin Schrock
For the University of Findlay Roughnecks it was another successful season under the direction of head coach Shawn Nelson. Nick Goeble made all the headlines for the Roughnecks with a third place finish at the NCAA Division II National Championships, but the event was far from a one-man show.
Nelson, who earned Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Co-Coach of the Year honors, finished up his 19th year at the helm of the program this year. Goeble became the 35th All-American Nelson has coached in that time.
Goeble, who came into the tournament as the number one ranked wrestler in the 149-pound weight class, gained a national tournament birth by going 4-0 in the regional tournament. However, after winning his first match at Nationals, he suffered a defeat by pin-fall to the number two ranked wrestler in the weight class.
“Nick (Goeble) is just an extremely hard worker,” said Nelson. “He’s really been a leader for us and he knows what he wants and he doesn’t let much come between that.”
Still, with one year left to compete, you can expect Goeble to be back competing for a national title in 2017.
“Anytime you can be an All-American there’s some joy in that but for a guy like him and seeing how much time and effort he put in I think anything less than first was a short coming,” said Nelson.
Goeble finished the season with 40 wins, setting a new school record. The previous mark of 39 was set in 2011 by national champion Michael Lybarger.
The Roughnecks sent two other competitors to the national tournament who didn’t have quite as much success as Goeble. Junior Joey White earned a birth in the national tournament by placing second at the Regionals, beating his fifth place finish from a year ago. White ended up going 1-2 at the National Tournament but it was still a successful year for the junior.
“For Joey (White) to make his first trip to the national tournament was really positive for us,” said Nelson. “Along with Goeble him and Alonzo (Turner) were our standouts.”
Turner, who was a redshirt-freshman, came seconds away from becoming an All-American. He dropped his first match 2-1 sending him into the consolation bracket where he split his next two matches.
‘Turner wrestled up a weight class all year so that he could come down,” said Nelson. “We ended up having two freshman who got us some wins.”
With young talent across the board for the Roughnecks, the focus quickly turns to next season now.
“We’re already talking about next year,” said Nelson. “I like to give the guys a week break but then we’ll meet as a team and kind of go over everything and then go from there.”
For the Roughnecks, who did not have a senior on the roster this year, next season will look to be another record-setting campaign.