The Christensen clan

by Matt Bower

For them, Simpson was an easy choice: “We could all be together and it was easier for the family to come watch,” junior Chase Weller said. “It’s a good experience to wrestle and know that you’ve got family members on the same team. It’s an opportunity that a lot of people don’t get to experience.”

Weller is a member of the Simpson wrestling team, but so are three of his cousins. Joining Weller on the team are senior Quent Christensen and juniors Cole Christensen and Brett Christensen.

“I’ve coached a pair of brothers on the same team before but never a set of cousins,” coach Ron Peterson said. “It’s really been a great experience for us.”

Southwest Iowa is home to the Christensen cousins; Quent and Chase are from Bedford, Cole hails from Leon and Brett from Lenox.

“They have a long tradition of success in the southwest of Iowa,” Peterson said.

Cory Christensen, another family member who won a national championship at 158 pounds in 1998, came to Simpson and wrestled for Peterson and the Storm ahead of the four cousins.

“I had the pleasure of coaching Cory when he was here,” Peterson said. “He went on to become a national champion.”

After Cory graduated, Quent came to Simpson to continue the Christensen legacy along with Tysen Christensen.

“I think we sort of started a trend,” Quent said.

Tysen transferred after a year here but Quent has remained with the Storm.

Quent has had an impressive run at Simpson. He’s started all four years and is a returning All-American, placing seventh at the Division III Championship last year and second in the Iowa Conference. He held an 11-7 record as of Jan. 21.

“He’s one of our captains this year,” Peterson said. “He’s a very solid competitor.”

According to Quent, there was some family pressure coming from his grandparents for the cousins to wrestle together but he has enjoyed every minute of it.

“It’s brought a close bond between us,” Quent said. “We’re a lot closer than we ever would be.”

Cole and Chase agree with their cousin.

“The bond between us is very strong,” Cole said. “We support each other in everything we do, on and off the team. We keep each other on the straight and narrow.”

“We’re a very close group,” Chase said. “The whole team is like one big family.”

The four cousins agree it has been and will continue to be a fun and rewarding experience wrestling on the same team together.

“You always have someone there; someone to turn to,” Brett said. “It’s like a support group.”

The support group must be working. Brett took third place at the Iowa Conference Championships last year and was 20-10 as of Jan. 21.

“Brett went to nationals two years in the heavyweight class,” Peterson said. “Cole and Chase have also been very successful.”

Cole currently held a 15-8 record while Chase stood at 15-4 as of Jan. 21.

The cousins spend a lot of time together both on and off the mat.

“We hang out a lot,” Brett said. “We’re always around each other helping out with grades and classes or talking about things.”

Peterson agrees with the cousins that it has been a positive experience for them to wrestle together.

“I haven’t seen any problems between any of them,” Peterson said. “They’re a lot like brothers. We’d take all of the Christensens if we could.”

The only negative aspect of this situation, if there is one at all, is the rare occasion when the cousins have to wrestle off against one another.

“You never like to wrestle off but you just have to do it sometimes,” Cole said.

The Christensens don’t let it get them down.

“There’s never been a problem to come out of it,” Brett said. “It’s been a lot of fun for the whole family.”