DES MOINES, Iowa - Two Iocal wrestlers capped off incredible careers with Indiana Tech wrestling, claiming national championships at the NAIA meet.
Erique Early (133 lbs.) and Sawyer Miller (125 lb.) scored thrilling wins in overtime in their respective weight classes. Early and Miller are the second wrestlers in Indiana Tech history to stand atop the NAIA podium at season’s end.
Early’s journey to the top of the NAIA podium almost didn’t happen. After losing in the national final a year ago, Early says he nearly opted not to return for his 5th year of eligibility.
The individual national title is part of a long list of accolades for Early, who graduated in from Snider High School in 2014. Back then, he swept the Summit Athletic Conference championships all four years, won 3 sectionals, 2 regionals, 1 semi-state and placed 4th at the state finals as a senior. His father, Eric, was a state champion at North Side High School in 1991.
As a team, Indiana Tech placed 4th. It’s the Warriors’ second Top 5 finish in four years, and the fourth-straight season placing in the top 10.
Miller has worked his way up the ranks to become one of the best wrestlers in America. Back-to-back NAIA All-American seasons became the launching pad for national championship season this year. Miller, a Berne native, was state runner-up as a South Adams High School senior, 3rd place as a sophomore and 4th place as a freshman.
Indiana Tech is one of 5 colleges that partners with Parkview Sports Medicine for athletic training, nutrition, athletic rehabilitation and orthopedic services for Warrior student-athletes.