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REGION COLLEGIANS: Northwestern’s Davison 'ready to contend' for national title
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REGION COLLEGIANS

REGION COLLEGIANS: Northwestern’s Davison 'ready to contend' for national title

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Lucas Davison

Chesterton grad Lucas Davison, a redshirt freshman, has only one Big Ten loss this season. The standout 197-pounder had a string of nine straight dual victories before his first Big Ten setback to Ohio State's top-ranked Kollin Moore on Feb. 9.

Andrew Howe knows a winner when he sees it.

That’s why he’s so excited about the potential he envisions with Chesterton’s Lucas Davison.

“Luke is ready to contend for a national title now,” said Howe, associate head coach at Northwestern. “He is constantly making adjustments and gets better each performance. He gets the most out of every day and continues improving.

“We really look forward to seeing him make a strong run (at the NCAA championships) in March.”

Howe, a Hanover Central grad, knows the sign of a champion, and those are strong words for a redshirt freshman like Davison. Howe was the 165-pound national champion at Wisconsin in 2010 when he went 37-0. He was 192-1 in high school and won three state titles at Hanover Central. And Howe, the Big Ten Freshman of the Year in 2009, loves what he sees in Davison, who has only one loss in the Big Ten at 197 pounds and has won 10 of his last 11 matches.

“Luke elevates the entire wrestling room,” Howe said. “He has a positive attitude day in and day out. His work ethic and coachability make him someone who is a lot of fun to work with.

“He has bought into a high standard and is willing to do what it takes to succeed at this level and beyond.”

Davison is currently ranked No. 9 in the nation at 197 pounds. He lost two matches to Purdue’s Christian Brunner in nonconference action prior to avenging those two setbacks in a 4-2 sudden-victory on Jan. 10.

Davison’s only loss in the Big Ten this season was to top-ranked Kollin Moore of Ohio State, 14-9, on Feb. 9. That broke a string of nine straight dual wins for Davison.

“Luke’s pedigree prepared him with all the necessary characteristics to transition well into college wrestling,” said Howe, who went 122-10 in college and finished no lower than third in the nation.

“He has made tremendous gains in a short amount of time and I think he is just starting to understand his true potential in the sport.”

Howe knows what it takes as well. He had success on the world stage, winning the 2010 U.S. Open freestyle championship and was the 2009 junior world bronze medalist as well as a runner-up at both the 2012 and 2016 Olympic trials.

“Luke is someone who can take this a long way and have success at the highest level,” Howe said. “Because of the person he is, we’re really not surprised to see him having the success he’s having. We’re lucky to have him a part of this program. This really is just the tip of the iceberg for him.”

Davison’s brother, Andrew, is currently wrestling at Michigan, while his father, Keith, was a two-time All-American at Wisconsin and the 1990 Big Ten Freshman of the Year.

Softball

Texas’ Miranda Elish (Crown Point) was named the initial Big 12 Conference Player of the Week of the 2020 season.

The senior standout batted an incredible .818 (9 for 11) with seven runs scored, three doubles, four homers (including a grand slam) and 17 RBIs against Maryland and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi at the Texas Classic.

Elish, who had 27 RBIs all of 2019, also excelled in the circle with a 2-0 record and 1.40 earned run average, one complete game and 18 strikeouts over 10 innings of week. She limited the opponents to a .171 batting average.

Elish’s weekend performance was so spectacular it also earned her the Louisville Slugger/National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) Division I National Player of the Week.

Women’s track and field

Manchester’s Ana Acevedo (Chesterton) won the mile at the DePauw Small College Invitational on Feb. 7. Her time of 5:18.69 was a personal record and ranks as the sixth-best time in program history.

Men’s basketball

Manchester’s CJ Hampton (Griffith) had 44 points in two games, including 11 of 13 from the free throw line and 5 of 9 from 3-point range. He had 24 points, four rebounds and four assists in a win over Defiance College. The junior followed with 20 points and seven boards against Franklin College.

Baseball

St. Xavier’s Ryan Troxel (Valparaiso) earned his first career save in the team’s 10-3 victory over Indiana Wesleyan on Feb. 11. The freshman closed out the game with three scoreless innings.

Men’s swimming

Wabash's Justin Dusza (LaPorte) and Wesley Slaughter (Chesterton) helped the team capture the 400 medley relay at the North Coast Athletic Conference meet. It was the first conference relay title in school history with a record-setting performance time of 3:19.95 in the finals.

Slaughter also helped the team finish third in the 200 free relay with Isaac Temores (LaPorte) on board in the event with a school-record time of 1:22.49. Slaughter added another third-place finish with the team in both the 200 medley relay with a school-record time of 1:30.92 and the 400 free relay. Dusza was also sixth in the 200 backstroke as the Little Giants finished third as a team behind powerhouses Kenyon and Denison. Wabash scored 1,264 points — the first time the program has ever surpassed 1,200 points.

Women's swimming

Wittenberg's Marita Banta-Long (Chesterton) helped the team to an eighth-place finish in both the 200 free relay and 400 medley relay at the NCAC Championships over the weekend.

The Times welcomes information about local athletes for inclusion in Region Collegians. E-mail Brian Waddle at bjwaddle@comcast.net.

The Times welcomes information about local athletes for inclusion in Region Collegians. E-mail Brian Waddle at  bjwaddle@comcast.net.

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