*Update: NCAA announced Thursday at approximately 3:15 p.m. that all remaining winter and spring championships have been canceled. Jets wrestlers and coaches will return home Friday, March 13. Congratulations to Tyler Lawley and Kameron Frame on their season accomplishments.
Newman University wrestlers Tyler Lawley (133) and Kameron Frame (157) will be hitting the mat this weekend at the NCAA Wrestling Championships.
Head Wrestling Coach Ryan Smith said it took a great deal of hard work to get to this tournament.
“These guys get to this tournament at the NCAA Division II level through one of the six super regionals across the nation. The top three out of those tournaments go on to compete at the national tournament,” he said. “So, there’s 18 total qualifiers across the entire nation to make those brackets.”
Frame, a management information systems and data analytics major, said that he is back to win this year.
“I’m happy with how this season has gone so far,” he said. “Last year, I became an all-American but came up short of my goal of being a national champion. I hope to win a national title this season.”
Smith said the wrestlers are being leaders without even having to think about it.
“When Kameron Frame came to Newman, he was an automatic leader. The other guys and the younger guys are looking at the guys that are winning matches,” he said. “There’s a lot of leadership values there without even really being in a leadership role.”
Lawley, who is majoring in criminal justice, said he has pushed through difficulty to get to this point in his career.
“The biggest thing that I have learned that I believe helped me qualify is just having self-belief,” he said. “It’s amazing what you can accomplish when you truly believe in yourself.”
Frame says his inspirations help him wrestle at a high level.
“My family, team and everyone who has been there for me during this process are who inspire me,” he said. “I want to make all of them proud.”
Lawley said he has similar inspirations.
“The life lessons wrestling teaches you are what has inspired me the most,” he said.
Smith gives credit to his staff for what the team has achieved.
“It’s incredible to watch the journey and see it. We’re blessed to be a part of the journey,” he said. “It’s phenomenal to watch my staff work with these guys, to take kids into the next level. It’s an emotional roller coaster at times, but it’s wonderful.”
Frame said his ability to pass through difficulty has cemented his success.
“One of the most important things I’ve learned over the years is how to overcome adversity,” he said. “I’ve been able to cope with any obstacles that get thrown my way and use them as learning lessons.”
Smith said though he is grateful for all he has achieved within this program, he wants more.
“We’ve got 20 All-Americans and we’re hoping to bring back numbers 20, 21 and 22 after this trip, so it’s going to be a fun weekend,” he said. “And you know, I think Noel Torres is getting a little lonely being the only Newman wrestling national champion. We’ve got a couple of opportunities to make that happen.”